March 15, 2016

Professors, Students Advocate Careers in Public Sector

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Visiting lecturer Duncan Campbell, industrial and labor relations, urged students to develop an understanding of the world beyond the United States at a panel in Goldwin Smith Hall Thursday.

Campbell was one of eight speakers at Cornell’s second annual Careers in Public Service Expo, where over 75 attendees witnessed presentations on the benefits of choosing careers that serve others.

Campbell — who has spent the past 25 years working with the International Labor Organization — said he chose to work in the public sector because he found his work there more rewarding.

“Working in the international civil service means waking up in the morning, knowing the values of my organization are important to me,” Campbell said. “The world is much bigger than the US. With my career, I get to know other cultures and the way in which other people think.”

The expo — which was co-hosted by Cornell International Affairs Society and the Roosevelt Institute — focused on introducing the idea of not choosing careers for personal profit, according to CIAS Director of Professional Development Marc Masson ’17.

“We believe such events are rarely held at Cornell, the focus being mostly on business careers, and both CIAS and Roosevelt want to encourage more students to strongly consider working in a public service career,” Masson said.

Large, private-sector organizations such as JP Morgan, Morgan Stanley and Goldman Sachs are discussed in conversation almost daily at Cornell, while public sector organizations are less frequently mentioned, according to Masson.

Shlagha Karjee ’18 said she attended the expo because of her interest in public service.

“I plan on going into an international organization or the public sector,” Karjee said. “I think it was necessary to hear that there are jobs and internships out there.”

The event was planned and run entirely by students, according to Masson.

“The CIAS board tasked me with planning the expo and [afterwards] we partnered with the Roosevelt Institute,” he said. “We met with the Director of Academic Events planning and the Director of Logistics at Roosevelt and we worked with them to find speakers of the event and how to hold the event.”