| by María López Godoy


María López Godoy outside
María López Godoy MAIEP ’20

Middlebury Institute students discuss their internships, how the Institute helped them, and what advice they’d give to current and future MIIS students.

My name is María López Godoy and I graduated with an MA in International Environmental Policy from the Middlebury Institute in 2020. I found my internship through the weekly emails sent by my advisor, who received the posting from an alumna. I applied for it as soon as I saw it and the process was rather fast. After a week, I found out I had an interview and three days later they confirmed I was hired as a graduate student assistant at the Monitoring and Stewardship Unit of the California Natural Resources Agency in Sacramento, California.

We never know what will happen, so go for it, every time.
— María López Godoy MAIEP ’20

The MIIS network, every class project, and some career advice I received have been by far the most helpful. I was able to connect with professionals and alumni many times and discuss ideas and expectations. At the same time, I always focused class projects on real experiences that could contribute to my job search and my professional growth.

Take the Initiative and Go For It

My advice for students is to never let fear of the unknown take over your decision making. Under stress, we often get lost in the “What if…?” and tend to make decisions based on hypothetical situations; for example, not sending out a résumé because “What if…?” or “I’m not going to apply for this job because X might happen if I do.” We never know what will happen, so go for it, every time. Remember you can only make decisions based on facts and not on fake scenarios playing in your head. And above all, be as persistent as possible. It pays off. Follow up on emails, calls, and potential opportunities, and talk to anyone who might be able to help you.