October 21 2010
ILR Students get exposure to Internship Opportunities at SVYM, an Indian NGO
Swami Vivekananda Youth Movement (SVYM, for short) is a non-religious, non-political and nonprofit organization, which strives to improve quality of life for underprivileged sections of society in India. The organization, founded by Dr. R. Balasubramaniam (aka Dr. Balu) in 1984, is involved in multiple sectors including, health, education, community development and training, research, advocacy and consultancy (TRAC). SVYM’s principal area of operation is in the Mysore District of Karnataka, India. It is currently running 60 projects which impact 5 million people.
Dr. Balu visited Cornell October 18-20, 2010 to talk to students about internship opportunities at SVYM. Over the years, SVYM’s presence at Cornell has been growing and students are showing high levels of interests in working for the nonprofit organization. During Summer 2010, Medalis Trelles '12 and Eva Drago '12 interned in Bangalore and worked on an education project, which aims to provide a range of academic, financial, and career counseling services to students in urban government schools throughout Bangalore. In particular their projects involved creating basic spoken English curriculum for the education-centered PremaVidya Project and developing an evaluation system for selecting students for educational advancement programs.
Eva and Medalis shared their experiences with great enthusiasm. Not only did they get the chance to work on a very meaningful project, but they also experienced living and working in a developing country, which was a great learning experience itself. According to Medalis, “After visiting many public schools in Bangalore I too believe that education should be a primary concern for the Indian government. There is a population in the city that is marginalized from equal and quality-level access to education. After my return from Bangalore, I have become a firm believer in education as a strong tool to help marginalized populations in developing nations”.
During this trip, Dr. Balu met students from the Johnson School, CIPA, Global Health Minor, ILR and CALS. ILR is also looking into developing partnerships for global service learning (GSL) opportunity with SVYM. According to Donna Ramil, Associate Director of ILR International Programs, “GSL provides a unique way to enhance classroom learning through meaningful service to a community. For ILR students, a GSL program with SVYM will also bring an opportunity to build their inter-cultural competency”.
To learn more about Eva’s and Medalis’ SVYM internship link to: http://www.ilrinbangalore.blogspot.com
For additional information about SVYM link to http://www.svym.net.