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Professional Development

The MIDP program includes personalized career advising and professional development services for fellows. We know that you don't just come to Duke for an education, but to advance your career in international development. So, we offer one-on-one counseling, small groups, and even courses aimed at supporting graduate students as they refine their professional skills. 


Career Advising and Employment Assistance

MIDP fellows in the traditional two-year program are required to complete an internship or consultancy. Internships are recommended but not required for one-year degree MIDP fellows. Why? We believe that there is no substitute for practical, immersive experiences. These summer opportunities allow fellows to practice some of the skills they are learning in the classroom. Fellows who go through the process of applying and completing internships are better prepared for the job search after graduation. But, you're not on your own: our experienced staff are familiar with U.S. employment protocol and available resources, and have networks in the development field in a broad range of issue areas and organization types.



CareerLink is your gateway to a number of jobs, internships and fellowships specifically targeted at MIDP fellows. This series of instructional videos will teach you how to register for CareerLink, search for jobs, and schedule an appointment with your career advisor. Watch the videos here.


Skills-based Workshops Series

Throughout the academic year, MIDP fellows are invited to attend workshops designed to teach practical skills. Themes include:

  • Polishing your international development resume or CV
  • Interviews: review of types of interviews, and video-recording of interviews by fellows
  • Employment research and application tips and tricks, and networking tools like LinkedIn
  • Leadership-building tools such as MBTI and StrengthsFinder 


Meet and Greet Sessions

Throughout the year, a wide variety of impressive thought leaders come to Duke. We do our best to include time for MIDP fellows to "meet and greet," and when possible, we help organize a special seminar or discussion as part of the speaker's visit schedule. We have found that these opportunities often help fellows narrow down their interests in particular sectors and organizations because they get an insider's view.


Alumni-in-Residence and Practitioner-in-Residence programs

Once each semester, the MIDP program invites an alumnus or alumna to participate in our Alumni-in-Residence Program. This program consists of a general “career talk” followed by a morning of one-on-one informational interviews. Once each semester, we also invite a development professional to participate in our Practitioner-in-Residence Program, which is similar to the Alumni-in-Residence Program in structure.


DC Professional Development Trip

In early January each year, MIDP fellows travel to Washington, D.C., for two days of seminars, panels and appointments with international development organizations, development professionals, MIDP alumni and other resource people who provide insights into international organizations in the D.C. metropolitan area and worldwide. Our speakers will also bring information about internships/consultancies in their organizations. During the trip, fellows attend group meetings with various officials from international organizations such as the World Bank, International Monetary Fund, Inter-American Development Bank or USAID as well as international and domestic NGOs. Fellows may also arrange individual, informational meetings with officials from organizations of their choice.


MIDP Alumni Network

Current MIDP fellows, Master of Public Policy (MPP) students, and alumni from both programs are excellent resources for internship and job ideas as well as for sharing best practices in your area of specialty. Sanford School of Public Policy alumni are fiercely loyal and are a great source of leads for the Sanford community. The MIDP staff and faculty can suggest which alumni might be most helpful. There are also active LinkedIn and Facebook groups for our alumni to meet each other directly. 


Devex Career Accounts and Access to Devex Resources

Devex is a portal for information on international development that is specifically tailored to mid-career development professionals. We are pleased to offer fellows membership to Devex as a part of our program. Devex hosts a forum in Washington, D.C., that we attend every year. Interested fellows are welcome to join us at the conference.


Portal of International-Development-Related Professional Resources

MIDP students can log in to SanfordCareerLink for access to MIDP's professional development webmix, a dashboard of links to online material for development professionals. This site is intended to be an up-to-date, easy-to-access space for all online information related to international development and professional development opportunities in the field.



Other Professional Development Opportunities


Duke Program on Global Policy and Governance in Geneva

In this program, MIDP fellows participate in a Geneva Policy Internship and an intensive one-week course focused on Global Health, Environment and Sustainable Development, Global Economic Governance and Development, or Humanitarian Assistance and Human Rights.


Duke Summer Internships in India

This program is designed to give Duke University graduate and undergraduate students the opportunity to intern with NGOs, government departments and socially focused businesses in India, providing them with a meaningful and professional opportunity to practice and gain new skills and responsibility in a developing country. Learn more. 


Summer School for Future International Development Leaders

The Summer School for Future International Development Leaders offers a 6-10 week summer research and educational program that gives Duke University graduate students the opportunity to work with students and development professionals from universities and organizations throughout India. The program, based in Udaipur, India, combines coursework and field research in a collaboration that aims to help transform the lives of some of the poorest people in the world. Duke University’s Sanford School of Public Policy and the Indian Institute of Management, Udaipur, sponsor this intensive, results-oriented program. Learn more. 


Internship Funding

  • MIDP Internship Fund: All fellows who are not fully sponsored and who participate in an unpaid internship as a requirement to complete their degree are eligible to apply for a summer stipend from the MIDP Internship Fund. An award is based upon many factors, including a fellow’s own resources, the sponsor’s contribution and whether or not the host organization is offering a financial or in-kind benefit.
  • Lethem Summer Internship Award: With a generous donation from Francis Lethem (MIDP ’95), Director of DCID, the MIDP offers a small monetary award to a fellow who performs his or her summer internship with MIDP alumni.




*Duke University policy states that all non-US citizen Duke students must present evidence of immigration status to the Duke Visa Services Office before the first day of classes and, whenever, thereafter, their status changes. Any work must be requested and approved through the Duke Visa Services office. Failure to comply will result in the inability to enroll for classes. Any students who are outside the United States and are unable to comply will be handled on a case by case basis. Graduate and professional students who are not in lawful status will not be enrolled or permitted to continue enrollment. Such students will be allowed to enroll or to continue only after regaining lawful status.*