Reflecting on my Time with IBJ

I am now 5 days out from the end of my internship with IBJ and I have had some time to reflect on my work there.

My greatest challenge while at IBJ was working around the time differences. It took me a while to get into the rhythm of working within multiple time zones. Most of my interactions happened with the main office in Geneva, so I had to be sure to get all of my questions and work into them before their end of workday, while also making sure I had enough work to sustain me until the end of my workday. I also worked on team members in Asia and Africa, sometimes all at once, and I had to juggle everyone’s time zones in my head while I worked. Eventually, I figured out how to make several world clocks the screensaver on my laptop, so I could easily glance and see multiple times at once. This made it much easier to make sure everything was happening on time. I am proud to say I never missed a meeting. I feel that this was a very important lesson and skill for me to obtain, because I hope to work in international law, and this is likely a problem I will face fairly often. I am glad I was able to recognize it as a challenge and find a solution so early in my career.

 My favorite project was the launch of the AA2J program. I think it is the most brilliant solution to a real problem and that it will empower both imprisoned women and women lawyers across Africa for years to come. I am so glad I got to be a part of it, and I look forward to following the program’s progress. When I am discussing my summer internship with family and friends, that is always the project I use to highlight IBJ’s work.

What I am most proud of is my white paper on democracy and the rule of law. I did more in-depth research for that than any project I have ever worked on, and I understand the interconnectivity of the two subjects on such a higher level now. The final product was some of my best writing, and positive feedback on the paper makes me feel confident that it will be used productively for grants in the future.

Overall, I have really enjoyed my time with IBJ. It is an incredible organization doing incredible work, and I am grateful that I was able to be a part of it. I am also thankful for William & Mary’s international internship program, without which I never would have ended up there. I would highly recommend this job and this program to any 1L or 2L at William & Mary who has an interest in international law.