July 10, 2012
Dzifa Penty is a financial management intern at the U.S. Mission (U.S. Embassy) in Kampala, Uganda, where she assists with budget analysis, voucher examination, and accounting. Born in Ghana, Dzifa is a senior economics major and French minor with an interest in joining the U.S. Department of State as a foreign service officer. Costs associated with her summer internship were covered in part through funding from the Richter Scholarship.
Describe your day-to-day experiences so far.
I assist with accounts receivable, logging and tracking invoices, routing and collection of bills. I also help with special projects for the financial management teams and have lunch with some of the diplomats and local employees. It is amazing how quickly I have made many friends here.
What inspired you to pursue the internship?
After studying abroad in Besancon, France, I knew I wanted to do something with my French major in [the] future and travel the world. I have been interested in joining the State Department as a foreign officer, so I decided to explore that field through an internship.
Can you cite an example of how your in-classroom and/or out-of-the-classroom experiences at Knox have benefited you in the internship?
At Knox, we are taught to work independently, and think creatively. This has really helped me with the projects I'm working on here, and it is amazing how those little things really matter and can be noticed by my supervisor and coworkers.
What has been the coolest part of your internship?
The best part has been meeting the former ambassador and also participating in a project for the incoming ambassador. It involved making a biography book about all the employees in the Mission, so I worked with and met almost all of them, including those at USAID and the CDC (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention).
How do you think this internship will benefit you in terms of your education, future career plans, personal development, etc.?
This internship will definitely help me operate in any work environment in future. I have also learned a lot about financial management and developed great teamwork and organizational skills.