Mary Effie spent the spring of her junior year studying and interning in Washington, DC.
Mary Effie spent the spring of her junior year studying and interning in Washington, DC.

Washington Semester Program sparks CMU-Q student’s passion for international development

Mary Effie Akinyi, a business administration senior at Carnegie Mellon University in Qatar (CMU-Q), has developed a passion for policy and international development during her undergraduate education. 

In her third year, Akinyi was selected to participate in the CMU Washington Semester Program (WSP). Organized through the Carnegie Mellon campus in Pittsburgh, WSP is an opportunity for undergraduates to spend a semester living, interning, and studying in Washington, D.C.

“The whole experience was wonderful,” said Akinyi. “Washington D.C. is not just the center of US policy making, it is a place where decisions affect people around the world.”

During the program, Akinyi interned at mEducation Alliance, an organization that brings together development organizations involved in education. mEducation Alliance provides a platform for information sharing and collaboration. She returned to Washington in September to attend the 2023 mEducation Alliance Symposium. The theme for this year’s symposium was inspiring the next generation of STEM (science, technology, engineering and mathematics) leaders.

“This conference was an opportunity to bring together my internship experience, and the coursework I have taken,” she said. “I am so interested in education and international development, I would like to explore it more when I graduate.”

Akinyi is particularly interested in working on the policy side of international development. Graduating in May 2024, she is earning a minor in politics and policy, and hopes to use her skills and experience to help create and implement policies to make quality education accessible to all children.

“When I started at CMU-Q, I didn’t appreciate how many opportunities I would have to learn and grow. I’ve been so fortunate to find this field, where I can use my quantitative and analytical skills to make a difference in the world.”


Search News

Get updates on all upcoming CMU-Q events & news