During the fall semester of 2022, I interned at the International Center of Religion and Diplomacy. The experience has given me a toolkit full of priceless skills that can be used to help advance peace and foster positive change. As an international studies major, after spending three years learning about restorative justice and peacebuilding work from textbooks and professors, witnessing ICRD’s different programmatic operations apply the concepts in action through international workshops, cultural exchanges, and informative webinars has been incredibly insightful.
As a communications intern, I worked primarily on helping shape the organization’s content creation strategies, such as drafting compelling newsletters, designing impactful graphics, and ensuring that ICRD’s branding and messaging were consistent, all while being mindful of empowering the communities we were working with. The hands-on work helped me gain valuable insight into the interdisciplinary nature of the humanities, social justice initiatives, and marketing efforts that culminate in creating change.
One big thing I learned was how fast-paced communications work can be! I helped with planning and moderating ICRD’s three-day webinar to celebrate the International Day of Nonviolence, and being able to coordinate eleven speakers over the course of three days was a rewarding lesson in event management, as was the incredible opportunity to listen to the inspirational lineup of peacemakers from around the world who had volunteered their time and expertise to speak about the importance peace and nonviolence.
I also helped create the following video to celebrate the International Day of Peace!
Throughout my time at ICRD, I have learned that peace is challenging, especially when religion is part of the question. However, seeing the work that the International Center of Religion and Diplomacy has done to not only strive for diplomacy but also add religion into the equation has been fascinating and enriching. I have loved getting to work with so many interesting people.
One of the most incredible features of the internship is that you are really integrated into the team. The Fall 2022 internship cohort was an essential aspect of this, we met weekly to check in and connect with one another. The intentional community-building allowed for great learning experiences and building companionship.
One of my favorite memories from my internship was the opportunity to attend the IRF forum, hosted by Empower Women Media, in November! Seeing how vital media and film productions are to empowering communities and influencing international politics was inspirational and humbling. There is so much power in our collective voices. I am grateful for the experiences that I have gained through this internship and the connections I have made!
The views, thoughts, and opinions in this blog belong solely to the author and are not representative of an official position or endorsement by the International Center for Religion & Diplomacy (ICRD).