IYF Intern Alumni Spotlight Series: Collins Oswago, Summer 2022 Intern

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C. Oswago headshotTo promote a more equitable landscape, IYF established the DEI Council and launched the #4toSoar initiative, aimed at enhancing access and representation across all levels of the organization. A cornerstone of these efforts is our internship program, designed to cultivate talent from underrepresented communities and diversify the international development field.

As part of our ongoing series highlighting the journeys of our interns, we're excited to share the insights and experiences of Collins Oswago! Collins’ dedication to youth development and women's empowerment motivated him to pursue an internship with IYF. This experience provided invaluable insights that shaped his career trajectory.

Recently, IYF caught up with Collins to learn about his current endeavors and how his internship has shaped his career. Collins now works as an administrative assistant at Morgan State University's Center for Urban Health and Equity. He also runs Gateway for Rural Development, a community-based organization committed to youth development and job placement in Kenya. Here is what he shared:

What motivated you to apply for the internship program at IYF? 
I'm passionate about youth development and women's empowerment. When I learned about the youth opportunity internship program, I was motivated to apply because it aligned with my passion and career objective.

How did your experience as an IYF intern influence your career trajectory? 
My time at IYF broadened my professional experience and interests. Since then, I've worked with resettlement organizations and educational institutions, among others.

What are some key learnings or skills you gained during your internship? 
I obtained extensive knowledge and experience in youth programming and development, project management, and digital skills, all of which have been crucial to my professional development.

Can you share any memorable moments or experiences from your time in the program? 
I have vivid memories of attending the IYF general board meeting in Washington, DC. I got to meet some incredible people. I networked with several of them and exchanged contacts. I was fortunate to meet with a few of them again, and I will always remember that experience.

Where are you now in your career journey? 
I currently work as an administrative assistant at Morgan State University's Center for Urban Health and Equity. My objective is to gain more expertise in the fields of project management, youth development, and health equity advancement. 

Are there any words of advice or encouragement you would like to share with current/future IYF interns? 
I will always advise future interns to seize every opportunity to network with diverse experts within the organization. This will allow them to learn from many sectors, which will benefit their professional development.

Check out the journeys of our other intern alumni: Kristi, Megan and Brandon. Applications for our 2024 internship program are now open to those ready to make a difference. Explore the possibilities and stay tuned for more inspiring stories from our Intern Alumni Spotlight series, as we continue to showcase inspiring stories of resilience and success