May Graduate Nathalie Marin-Gest Turned Summer Internship Into Dream Job

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Nathalie Marin-Gest

Nathalie Marin-Gest (MBA/IPS '13) working with avocado farmers in Mexico for Fair Trade USA.

August 9, 2013 - 12:00am

Nathalie Marin-Gest (MBA/IPS ’13) has a lot going for her.  Multilingual, intelligent, and likeable, she was so enthusiastic about a career in development that she added a Masters in Business Administration (MBA) degree to her International Policy Studies (IPS) degree to make sure she had all the right skills.  It was not a surprise to her career advisors that she came away from the 2012 Monterey Institute Career Fair with two offers for promising summer internships. 

Her choice was to spend the summer of 2012 working with Fair Trade USA in Oakland.  Some of her assignments turned out not to be as challenging as she had hoped, but she was still very interested in the organization and made sure to have a positive attitude, and to be “willing and ready to take on any task.”  She kept in touch with the people she worked with over the winter and even offered to do some translation work for them pro-bono along with her studies. 

In February of her last semester Nathalie saw a job posting from Fair Trade USA and decided to apply.  She was hired as a part-time contractor in March and helped organize a conference in Mexico.   Her great performance there, especially in relating with the farmers, led to an offer of a full-time position and the day before graduating from MIIS she signed the employment papers.

“This position is really the opposite of my internship,” Nathalie shares, “it is very challenging and greatly rewarding.”  She is a Supply-Chain Manager for the Produce & Floral Department at Fair Trade USA, working with farmers in Latin America who are not Fair Trade certified, helping them go through the certification process.  “After I was hired I was told that my supervisor during the internship had pulled my application from the pile for special consideration,” she says.  Nathalie loves her job and feels perfectly prepared for the challenge, adding laughingly that being a student at MIIS simply “makes you sharper all-around.”


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