UHP Dinner with Alumni – Stephanie Hallett

5 May

This is a guest post by two UHP students: Austin Donahue, SMPA ’14 and Megan Kavaras, ESIA ’14. 

This April, we had the opportunity to participate in the Dinner with Alumni program, where we met with Honors alumna Stephanie Hallett at Tonic. Stephanie graduated from GW in 1999, and is now working with the State Department as a foreign service officer. She began her career as a civil service employee before being accepted into the foreign service. Stephanie’s assignments include the Operations Center in Washington; the U.S. Consulate in Monterrey, Mexico; and the U.S. Consulate in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia.

Stephanie was very engaging and helpful in sharing her expertise on working in the foreign service and how to apply. Some of the best advice she gave was to go out into the world after college, work, and allow yourself to change your mind about what you want to do. To illustrate this point, she told us how her mother decided that her daughter was enjoying working in the foreign service so much that she also decided to apply. Her mother was accepted, and is now stationed in Yemen!

One of the main questions Stephanie gave her perspective on was how to balance work and family, and to our surprise, the foreign service is actually increasingly accommodating of family members, allowing women to not have to choose between career and family. Stephanie has been married for several years, and although she and her husband were separated for a time, the service ensures that her husband will be able to move with her on her next assignment in Bahrain, and will also help connect him with a job in his field. Stephanie strongly suggested taking the foreign service exam for practice if you are interested in becoming a foreign service officer, citing the interesting and exciting nature of the job.

Overall, she provided us with a lot of advice we can use in the future whether or not we pursue foreign service work, and we look forward to keeping in contact with her! We also wish her luck on her next assignment.

Interested in the Dinner with Alumni Program? Visit the GW Alumni website and look out for invitations for more dinners next fall! 

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