Tuesday, September 7, 2010

A Letter from UNESCO Paris: Soojin Min (Boston University)

Soojin Min in Paris during her UNESCO HQ internship
Dear Prof. McSweeney,
Hello! This is Soojin. How are you?
It was such a great pleasure to meet you at UNESCO!
As I mentioned, I would like to share my summer internship story with you.
I completed my internship at UNESCO Headquarters in Paris, France, at the Section for Basic Education, Literacy and Non-Formal Education in the Division for Basic Education this past summer. Assigned to a literacy team, where six other people were working, I assisted with projects related to literacy prizes and conferences. I mainly worked on the UNESCO Database on Literacy Projects and Programmes, which was a pilot project. Based on UNESCO's criteria, information and details of literacy programs run by NGOs and governments were collected for knowledge sharing. 
Professor Brenda Gael McSweeney and Soojin Min, Paris
I also worked on press release documents for the International Literacy Day(ILD). Every year, on September 8th, the UNESCO King Sejong Literacy Prize & the UNESCO Confucius Prize for Literacy are awarded to a total of four entities that have made a difference in fighting illiteracy. Additionally two entities are honorably mentioned. The King Sejong Prize is sponsored by the Korean government and the Confucius Prize is sponsored by the Chinese government. Complying with the United Nations Literacy Decade (UNLD) thematic calendar, the theme for this year is “Literacy and Women’s Empowerment”. The award ceremony will take place at UNESCO Headquarters in Paris on September 8, 2010. This year's recipients demonstrate the power of achieving women's literacy through their amazing programs.
During my internship, I realized that the role of international organizations in integrating and supporting education projects is something that should not be underestimated.  I also learned that the best possible way to promote gender equality is through education, and I therefore believe literacy education should be the very first step towards it. 
UNESCO Headquarters lobby: promoting Gender Equality
I'm attaching my pictures at UNESCO, in front of its famous statue of Giacommeti and a picture of the UNESCO lobby and another one with you at the Comptoir. And this is the link to UNESCO's literacy prizes:
Have a wonderful semester!

Best wishes,