Anil De Costa, MILR '06
I joined the MILR program at Cornell in the Fall of 2004 and to date I strongly believe that it was one of the best decisions I have made. I graduated in India with degree in Mass Communications and Psychology and worked for a while as human recourses consultant. Hence the master’s degree was always my next step and Cornell was the obvious choice.
This summer I got the opportunity to intern with Colgate Palmolive and was allocated to their pet nutrition division Hill’s Pet Nutrition Inc in Topeka, Kansas. A lot is said about the Midwest but having been there for two months in the summer, I think it is a part of the country where you can truly get a glimpse and experience the America that we only read about in books its rich culture and heritage.
Unlike the big cities of New York, Topeka despite being a capital city, is about relationships within a community. Not withstanding my status of being an international student, I was warmly welcomed into the community that I stayed in, which you could say is a reflection of America’s fundamental attribute of always welcoming people from other countries. You also notice a completely different mindset in the Midwest, instead of the frenetic and hurried pace of a New York, you are exposed to a rhythmic and calm lifestyle. People are always interested in not just what you do for a living, but your background, your interests and things about you that are considered important in the Midwest. Its more about who you are rather than what do you do for a living!
Now back for my second year, I am looking forward to working with the International Programs at ILR as a Research Assistant. I am also part of the board of the Graduate Student Association (GSA) at ILR and work closely with the International Graduate Student bodies to help integrate the international students into the ILR community. The ILR program boasts of one of the most diverse student populations and is a true reflection of changes taking place in today’s globalized world. In lieu of this I believe that it is important that we tap into the wealth of talent that our school draws with each passing batch. This exposure to different view points, ways of thinking, value systems will equip us with the skills needed to succeed as human resource professionals in this new global business landscape.
I strongly believe my experience at ILR and Cornell has allowed me to blend into the local communities at the places that I stayed at during my internship. ILR in particular represents a sea of diversity and the interactions with my fellow classmates from China, Korea, Latin America, Canada and even the different parts of the United States, have definitely made me more aware and sensitive of cultural nuances. In conclusion I can boldly say that ILR is a place where differences are not merely “accepted”, differences are celebrated!
- Anil De Costa