This summer, UVU sent two seniors to intern in Switzerland with the United Nations for a period of three months under the Women and Education Project, directed by Dr. Susan R. Madsen.
“This is not a normal internship,” Madsen said. “It gives them global skills to work internationally. Their lives will be changed and this will transform them.”
By focusing on student internships, UVU is paving the way for students to leave an impact in the world. UVU’s mission of engaged learning encourages student internships that are creating successful professionals.
Madsen founded the Women and Education Project after learning about the low percentage of women graduating from high school and college in Utah. She set out to find the cause of the problem.
Her two-year project has come to a close, and she is now compiling her findings with videos. The videos encourage women to attain higher education and demonstrate how families and other women can help.
Madsen recently had the opportunity to present for the UN in Geneva and formed a relationship with the Vice President of International Affairs over the Worldwide Organization for Women, also known as WOW.
Nicolle Johnson, a communications and business management major, will be working with the World YWCA to plan their upcoming International Women’s Summit.
“There are currently 48 approved [breakout sessions] and they will include approximately 1,000 participants,” Johnson said about the Summit. “We are planning to have roughly 100 different countries participate, including Australia, Canada, Denmark, Finland, Japan, Iceland, Nigeria, India, Palestine, and Sri Lanka.”
Meanwhile, Jessica Burnham, an Integrated Studies major with emphasis in Peace and Justice Studies, Sociology with a minor in Gender Studies will be attending various conferences and meetings with the World Health Assembly and the Human Rights Council.
Some of her responsibilities include note taking, writing reports, and event planning.
“I have also met some incredible people who are extremely passionate about what they are doing with their lives, which is simultaneously inspiring and informative,” Burnham said.
UVU’s representation in Switzerland helps to add credibility to the University and exemplifies the mission of engaged learning. Both students received support from various departments on campus including the School of Humanities, Social Sciences and Internship Services.
“My opportunity with WOW displays UVU’s willingness to invest in its students,” Burnham said. “UVU makes a great effort to foster the potential within their students.”