Friday was my last day at USAID, so I’ve spent the past couple of weeks wrapping up all of the projects I’d been working on, helping with some quick/short-turn around research projects, and saying goodbye to the attorneys and interns.
I had a great summer at USAID - both because I enjoyed the projects I was able to help with but maybe more so because the people in the office were so helpful, kind, smart, and funny. I worked remotely all summer, which made getting to know everyone in the office more difficult than if I’d shared a workspace with them, but there ended up being advantages as well. I was able to help on projects for and attend meetings with attorneys at the missions overseas since all meetings were held virtually, as well as meetings with other bureaus within the Agency and other agencies/departments outside of USAID.
Working at the General Counsel’s office was a great experience because it offered opportunities to work on a lot of different subject matters, many of which were unfamiliar to me at first. I helped with employment litigation, drafting contracts and agreements, federal ethics rules, foreign assistance, and more. Having to work on issues involving subject matters which were unfamiliar to me, such as data and privacy or foreign assistance, felt daunting at first and required me to do a lot of background research in order to get up to speed on the assignments. However, one of the attorneys explained to us that even without prior experience with a particular subject matter, we would be able to get by if we had good at research, writing, and analysis skills. The attorneys told us that they also often worked on issues which were unfamiliar to them, and they had to do the same thing as us interns - go do a deep dive of research and get caught up.