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Sreya Panuganti

Sreya Panuganti

I've been exposed to a variety of disciplines touching on international politics and human rights.

What do you do now?

I am currently seeking a second Master’s degree at the George Washington University’s Elliott School of International Affairs. My program focuses on International Development Studies. In addition, I interned with the U.S. Department of State in their Bureau of Democracy, Human Rights and Labor, and currently am interning with Pact, a development NGO, where I assist with program delivery in Southern Africa and Francophone countries. I most enjoy knowing that I am contributing to making a difference in developing countries, learning about other cultures, and working in a team.

What path have you taken to get there?

Prior to attending City, University of London, I was working in the private sector in a job that did not feel meaningful. By being exposed to people from all over the world, and by having the ability to intern with WaterAid, an NGO specializing in delivering access to clean water and sanitation, I truly found my passion, and began to explore what it would take to ultimately get a job in that sector.

Why did you choose to study at City, University of London and how has it helped you?

When researching MA programs abroad, I already had 2 years of work experience, and my intention was to find a program that coupled practical knowledge with academic learning. City was one of the only schools to boast an excellent careers office and the flexibility of my schedule allowed me to intern concurrently. By being exposed to a variety of disciplines touching on international politics and human rights, I was confident that with this experience, I could make myself a competitive candidate for a job in the field I wanted to go in. So far, this has definitely proven true!

What did you enjoy most about your course?

I loved that my professors all came from different backgrounds – the private sector, academia, think tanks, and brought their respective world views into the classroom, encouraging debate and dialogue with us students.

What was the hardest part of your course?

I found that at times it was a bit difficult to adjust from an “American” academic background to a different set of grading and expectations. But the professors were always willing to sit down and discuss my concerns and help me to understand what it was they wanted from an assignment.

What was your favourite part of being a City Student?

Because City is so well positioned in London, I felt that not only was I getting a great academic experience, but I was also able to enjoy living in one of the most interesting and exciting cities in the world.

If you could give one piece of advice to a prospective City International Politics and Human Rights MA student, what would it be?

I would absolutely, emphatically advise a student in my program to take advantage of volunteering at an organization that catches your interest while in London. Balancing school and work is difficult but so rewarding. I found myself bringing up things I discussed at work while in class, and vice versa. In addition, I’d recommend students take advantage of the many events taking place at City, from speakers to film screenings. It’s a great way to meet people and discuss your interests!