ALUMNI NETWORKING: 2013 Editor Interview Sandra Hassan
1. Where and what is your current work/professional situation?
I am currently working as an IT and Multimedia Analyst at the World Bank in Marseille, France. Part of my job is to offer support to program teams who are in the field implementing development projects. Another part is as webmaster for the Center for Mediterranean Integration, which requires an understanding of development work and the humanitarian context. The MPH helped me gain the skills needed to do this job, building on my bachelor’s degree which was in Computer Science.
2. How did you get involved in your current work?
While in my second year of the MPH, I prepared a list of organizations that I would like to work for and I tried to check their websites for vacancies often. Despite my efforts, I almost missed this job posting. If it weren’t for a friend pointing it out I’d never have seen it. And truthfully it was a perfect fit for me; a position at the intersection between development work and technology.
3. What skills did you learn from the MPH program that are applicable in your current roles?
As much as I hate to admit it, learning statistics has been extremely helpful. It comes up almost everywhere, and knowing my way around stats has made a huge difference. During the MPH I also learned a lot about working in teams and giving presentations. Those are skills that are invaluable in the workplace. It was also great fun and a wonderful experience to work on the newsletter while I was there, and it’s an experience that now lends itself to much of the online work that I do.
4. Any advice for future EHESP MPH graduates?
This field is based heavily on networking and your professors at the program are excellent connections to have. Make the best of them. Don’t just attend for the course content; make an effort to get to know your professors and let them get to know you. Also, go to every conference you have the chance to attend. Meet the professors/speakers there and talk to them. I know it might feel you don’t have anything to say…talk to them anyway. It’s a great way to find internships and even jobs later on.