On the 7th of October thanks to the Community Engagement Mini Grant I received I attended the World Bank 2014 Youth Summit in Washington D.C. The topic of the event was “Open and responsive governments”. Bringing together youth leaders from around the World, the summit created space for and facilitated conversation and skill-building to promote government openness and fight the lack of trust towards government institutions brought by corruption, bad management and inefficiencies. The event featured a number of keynote speakers among who were prominent world leaders and politicians. Additionally, there was a variety of workshops to choose from which offered space for discussion practical ideas how to improve the involvement of young people in government processes, transparency and accountability building.
Starting with the preparation for the event, I was allowed to grow professionally and exercise skills that will be of importance to my future career such as perfecting my resume, learning strategies about effective networking and choosing appropriate attire. Attending a World Bank event was surely a unique opportunity for a second year student, yet I learned that being genuine is the best policy. Giving my resume to a junior professional working in international development and confessing it was the first resume I have given to someone, got the person very touched and motivated to provide me with mentorship. I also met a lot of mind-like peers, UN staff and even several youth activists I had met at previous global summits I have attended such as the Global Youth Forum in Bali in 2012. Thus, the experience provided me with an opportunity to network outside of my typical college setting, as well as to learn more about the networking and internship seeking processes which I am now better prepared for.
Moreover, the event inspired me to transition from my interest in non-profit work towards more advanced policy and social movement building. The topic of government accountability made me realize that the ways to youth empowerment which I am strongly dedicated to are various. Because of this event, today I am richer with ideas about empowering youth that no longer are limited to informal education and volunteering. Realizing the growing in importance role of youth participation in society further inspire me to work with youth and for youth. Last but not least, because of attending the event and staying for the following IMF and WB annual meetings which gathered political and business leaders gave me a chance to get to know some of the biggest and most influential institutions from as close as it gets which gives me more perspective on the career options I have in front of me.
-Maggie Nazer ’17
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