In the words of Ms. Sojung Kang
“I have always aspired to make a substantial contribution to the environment, especially biodiversity conservation, in the global aspect since I was a middle school student. Studying Public Administration and Economics for my bachelor’s degree led me to pursue working for environmental governance. When I found the EAAFP internship recruitment post, at first glance, I knew that this experience could be a stepping-stone to chart my career path in ecosystem and biodiversity conservation and after working for ten months, I can recognize that it really was.
Although the EAAFP Secretariat has a small number of staff members, it became an opportunity for me to take much responsibility in each project that I took part in. During the 2019 EAAFP Waterbirds Photo Contest, I could learn the project management skills by leading a small project stemmed from the main contest. I drafted concept notes, managed and analyzed raw data, posted articles, communicated with over 1000 participants from all around the world, judges, and Partners. Moreover, I even took a chance to be the MC of EAAFP’s 2019 Year-End Reception, leading the event for an hour and a half. Through this experience, I gained public speech, networking, and advocacy skills at high-level setting and learned how to manage sudden and unexpected situations professionally. By assisting several international conferences, meetings, and workshops, internship at EAAFP allowed me to be in charge of various and meaningful tasks, not only desk research but also actively involving in outreaching activities.
Besides these hands-on works, the internship at EAAFP provided numerous opportunities to learn the importance of conservation of wetland and migratory waterbirds and to meet like-minded people working in the field of conservation and sustainable development. As I am planning to do master’s degree to study further about the environmental change, biodiversity conservation and management combining my background knowledge of Public Administration and Economics, working at the Secretariat has helped me to be able to specify my research interest which is to contribute to conservation governance. Also, meeting with the EAAF Partners including Governments, International Environmental Organizations, INGOs, and other important players such as, corporates, research institutes and indigenous people allowed me to gain a deeper understanding of the way to achieve consensus on the environmental protection among various stakeholders.
I would like to thank all staff members for trusting and supporting me to take important roles and to learn more about wetlands, migratory waterbirds, and the network of international organizations. It was my pleasure to contribute to the EAAFP itself and what EAAFP is aiming for. On the basis of working experience at EAAFP, I will keep developing my skill set needed to be invested in the environmental protection and sustainable development to uphold the value of biodiversity.”