Charpentier, 2017, United States
On the MA: Earning my MPA at New York University and receiving a two-year Leland Fellowship from the Congressional Hunger Center set me on my path in the UN, focusing on international development and humanitarian assistance. As a generalist, I have worked in program development, planning and coordination, as well as resource mobilization and partnerships in the fields of food security, agriculture and rural development, child rights and aid effectiveness. Over a decade, five countries and four agencies later, I've retained a sense of mission, as well as a drive to keep learning and getting better at what I do.
A key lesson from my experience to date, particularly afield is that there is no one-size-fits-all solution and that every context demands its own analysis and customized response. So development and aid workers are asked to step out of silos and become skilled integrators, capable of fostering links among various sectors and collaboration among diverse actors. Coming to Fletcher seemed the best option for a mid-career sabbatical. The courses are letting me refresh my knowledge as well as fill in gaps to equip me better as an integrator. At the same time, I can take a step back to assess my career to date and contemplate a pivot within the field. And I get to do it while being supported by the Fletcher community and taking advantage of greater Boston's academic and cultural offerings.
Something that has surprised me: Diversity was a given working in the UN, but I didn't expect to find it at Fletcher. As I found out on the first day of fall classes, not only the USA but Asia, Europe, North and South America were well represented, and diversity in gender, nationality and ideas is the norm.
Most rewarding trip
Hiking in Bhutan
Most pressing world issue
Our impact on the environment and climate change
Most memorable international experience
Living and traveling in Central Asia
Best place to study
Third floor of Ginn Library
Favorite location on campus
Tisch Library rooftop with its view of downtown Boston
Education before Fletcher
MPA, Public and Nonprofit Management and Policy, New York University
BA, French, University of the Philippines
Experience before Fletcher
Consultant, United Nations Children's Fund and World Food Program, Port-au-Prince, Haiti
Donor Relations Officer, World Food Program, Dakar, Senegal
Head of Secretariat, Development Coordination Council, United Nations Development Program, Dushanbe, Tajikistan