Careers

IDC creates opportunities for members to learn about career paths in the field of international development. IDC also helps its members develop contacts and find internship and job opportunities through events, study trips and career treks.

In the last few years, international development professionals have recognized the role that the private sector plays as a key partner in the fight against poverty. The application of business concepts and techniques has become crucial to improving the way in which leading development organizations operate and achieve their goals. In addition, many MBAs are finding ways to help reduce poverty and affect change while working in traditional business fields including finance, consulting and marketing.

Washington, DC Trip

Each year, the IDC organizes a trip to Washington, DC to visit organizations employing MBAs in various areas of international development including private equity, development consulting and social entrepreneurship. The trip is designed to enable students to garner first-hand knowledge of international development career options, and to network with practitioners working in leading firms within the industry.

Last Fall, the IDC organized its 7th annual trip to Washington, DC. The event featured:

Breakfast at the IFC with Columbia Business School alumni
Private Equity in Emerging Markets panel with IFC, the Global Environment Fund, and Calvert Investments
Private Sector Development, Carbon Finance, and Banking & Debt Management panel with the World Bank
Development Consulting panel hosted by Chemonics, Dalberg, DAI and Technoserve
Social Entrepreneurship panel with Agora and Ashoka.

UN Trip

Each year, the IDC organizes a trip to the United Nations (UN) World Headquarters to provide students an opportunity to learn about MBA career options with the UN. The event is structured around panels designed to demystify the organizational structure and hiring process, and offer insight as to where the skills of an MBA might be most valuable. In previous years, panelists included Columbia University alumni from the Business School and School of International and Public Affairs (SIPA) working with various organizations within the UN, including:

Millennium Development Goals (MDG) Carbon Facility
United Nations Global Compact
Human Resources Planning
Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA)

International Development Industry Networking Night

The Industry Networking Series provides an opportunity for alumni and students focused on international development to both network and engage in a lively discussion about potential careers in the industry. Of particular focus is finding “traditional” jobs to serve non-traditional markets. This event is open to alumni, faculty and MBA students only.

In Spring, the International Development Industry Networking Night featured Professor Antony Bugg-Levine, Managing Director of the Rockefeller Foundation, moderating a panel discussion. The event also featured a panel of distinguished speakers including:

Partner at Developing World Markets, a private equity firm
Partner at Dalberg Global Development Advisors, a leading global economic development consultancy
Founder of Conscious Impact
Director of Strategy & Planning at McGraw-Hill

Student Career Paths

IDC and Microlumbia, our student-run microfinance organization, organizes student career panels to facilitate the exchange of knowledge, as well as to generate ideas and contacts among club members. During the fall semester, second-year students who have completed a summer internship in international development share their experiences. During the spring semester, students with international development experience prior to business school also share their experiences in the field.

IDC and the Social Enterprise Program work closely with Columbia Business School’s Career Management Center to develop recruiting relationships and highlight internship and job opportunities with organizations in the field of international development. IDC also conducts an annual survey of member interests, to collect information about student career preferences along geographic, functional and organizational lines.

Columbia Business School’s Career Management Center

The IDC strives to keep students informed of summer internship and full-time international development opportunities through bi-weekly e-mails detailing postings on the Columbia Opportunity Information Network (COIN) as well as upcoming application deadlines.