For Amy Huang ’13, recipient of a Davis Projects for Peace award, her interest in international development did not end upon her return from Ethiopia in 2013. Now Huang is pursuing a master’s in international affairs at Columbia University’s School of International and Public Affairs.
Huang and her classmate Abdi Ali ’13 traveled to Ethiopia after receiving a $10,000 grant from the Davis Projects for Peace, which funds grassroots projects to promote peace worldwide. In Dabola Village, they used that money to establish a community health center for women affected by obstetric fistula.
“I studied economics while at Denison and did research on development in rural China, so now I want to look at economic development internationally,” Huang said.
Hoping to work for an international organization in the future, Huang explained that the field experience in Ethiopia provided her with a new perspective on challenges and opportunities.
“I think it was a very empowering process for me. The women we worked with are very strong. They are very positive about their situation,” Huang said. “It was really great to interact with them; it gave me more motivation to pursue this area in the future.”
The value of her study abroad experience in Germany, the close relationships she developed with her professors, and the rigor of academics in her undergraduate time have been of great value to Huang in graduate school.
“Denison prepared me well. And being at Columbia will give me the most updated perspective and skills for this field. It opens up a lot of opportunities to put the theory in practice,” Huang added.