Dear Future Hannah,
Here we are – May 2022, I have just submitted my last assignment and am ready to receive my diplomas! What a crazy two years this has been. To think it all began in the midst of a global pandemic. An entire year [at least] completed online while completing my Masters of Arts in Sustainable International Development. The second year [hopefully] completed mostly in person while completing my Masters of Science in Global Health Policy and Management. I did it. I now have two masters and a well-packed tool kit of new skills and knowledge to take with me as I enter the field. All in all a good year!
My resume looks great, I am feeling confident, and now I can take some time to reflect on my experience at Heller. First of all, the connections I have made – even virtually, have been wonderful. I have met some of the most incredibly talented individuals during my time who have inspired me in every way; fellow students, professors and staff alike have deeply enriched my time at Heller and my life at large. I have also gained valuable quantitative skills to take into the field; from cost-benefit analysis to international health financing, I am feeling much more confident dealing with data. I also have a number of completed projects that will serve as competency checks for future jobs. This includes a full survey designed, a monitoring and evaluation project, even a corporate sponsorship plan for an NGO (just to name a few). Wow – I am ready!
So, what’s next? Well, I hope I have a job pinned down upon graduating, but I know how tough it can be to land the right job at the right time so I am not averse to a little patience. Will I be working with a faith-based NGO? For the government? Within the United States, Canada, or maybe even Brazil? The possibilities are exciting, but scary. I know that at this point I have more direction, but I wish I could tell my past self that it will all work out because she is freaking out a little. I wish I knew exactly which career path I was headed down. Not only for peace of mind but also to ensure I am taking classes that tailor well to that. However, the beauty of my degrees from Heller is that I am gaining information across a wide landscape of topics. This will make me versatile in the job market and flexible within my career.
Okay, now that we are here at graduation, here are some things I hope I can say as I finish this two year journey:
- I made it through while making the best of my situation (Covid really changed everyone’s plans, but I hope I didn’t just “get through it” but that I made the most of it).
- I created some long-lasting relationships with those at Heller who I can always lean on in the future, and who can lean on me.
- I took advantage of opportunities for various forms of growth while at Heller.
- I applied myself and did the best work I possibly could throughout my courses.
- I left an impact on Heller, and it left an impact on me.
- This investment was totally worth it, and I would not have changed a thing… okay maybe the whole global pandemic thing! But besides that, I wouldn’t have changed a thing.