Katie Coldwell

What excites you about your new position?

I am excited to work for an international development and humanitarian aid organization that is committed to serving the poor, marginalized and oppressed persons. CRS works diligently to uphold the Catholic Social teaching principles in every element of their work. CRS is a leader in the peacebuilding field and I am excited about the professional development opportunities the organization can offer.

What steps did you take and/ what resources did you access to land this particular opportunity?

I applied to the Kroc Institute of International Peace Studies at the University of Notre Dame because I knew this institution had a strong working partnership with Catholic Relief Services (CRS). During graduate school, I looked for ways to learn from and interact with members of the CRS staff. I used the semester-long field experience to intern with CRS to gain a deeper understanding of their work. I also utilized the services of my Graduate Career Services Consultant to proofread my cover letters, help edit resumes and conduct mock interviews.

Looking back on your job search experience, what advice would you give to current students?

Informational interviews are excellent opportunities to learn about the different types of employment in a particular field. Even when I am not actively looking for a position, I continue to arrange informational interviews to ask questions and build my professional network. These contacts have often served as connections and support for me years later. I recommend all graduate students explore the funding opportunities the University of Notre Dame/The Graduate School has to help cover expenses associated with their professional development opportunities.