Evelina's internship experience at FCG Sweden
Monitoring and Evaluation Intern Autumn 2021
After five years of studying, I was excited to go into the real world and apply my hard-earned knowledge to actual – and real – projects. I was, however, also completely terrified – for what did I really know about development cooperation, other than what I’ve been taught by academics (who tend to view the world from a theoretical point-of-view)?
Knowing this, it might surprise you that I chose to conduct my internship at FCG Sweden – a company specialising in development consulting – as I simply had no idea or academic knowledge on what “development consulting” meant or entailed. However, not knowing kind of enthralled me, as it meant I probably (and hopefully) would learn something new.
So, let us fast-forward to August 2021 when I began my internship. I knew that I would be interning at the Monitoring and Evaluation department, and that they did exactly what their name said – i.e. evaluated and monitored development projects, which I found (and still find) to be an extremely important part of development interventions. I however did not know what the evaluation process looked like, or what development consulting meant. Nor had I any in-depth knowledge of procurement processes, which I knew were connected to it all somehow. After the introduction week, however, I began to understand, and today I can proudly say that: 1) I get it! And 2) I can work and find my way around this world proficiently.
Moreover, the Monitoring and Evaluation department is – compared to the other departments at the company – not confined to one thematic area. As such, the assignments I worked on had great variation: some focused on environmental issues or natural resource management, some on good governance, others on education or gender equality, and so on. This meant that I got great insight to current development projects; both in terms of contemporary themes, trends, and priorities – and due to my department, also their challenges and shortcomings. Additionally, seeing that different projects had been implemented and commissioned by different actors, I also got a great overview of key players in the development field. I was further given the opportunity to involve myself in assignments which thematic issues interested me on a personal level, and thus learn how such issues are being targeted practically. In other words, during my internship I learnt lots about the development sector that I could not have learnt at university.
Lastly – but not least – I had great, supportive colleagues as well as fellow interns who were very difficult not to like. To summarize it all, I can only say that I am very happy I chose to conduct my internship at FCG Sweden, even though I initially didn’t know what I was choosing.