Sarah Houge

Sarah Houge in a classroomAs a graduate from the International Development program, Sarah has embarked on several important jobs in the realm of international development.  Sarah worked as the English Regional Trainer for the World Federation of the Deaf Human Rights and Capacity Building project in West and Central Africa. As part of this project, she trained Deaf Associations and Organizations in various countries in West Africa, focusing on capacity-building and organizational development, as well as advocacy using the UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities. The training helped increase their skills and knowledge on how to operate an organization, as well as how to work with external agents such as government agencies.  Additionally, Sarah gave a presentation at the recent World Federation of the Deaf Congress in Durban, South Africa (July 2011) about issues that interfere with the advancement of Deaf Associations in West Africa.

Sarah was a Peace Corps volunteer in Jamaica, led a delegation of Deaf Youth to Kenya and India with Deaf Global Reach Out, did contract work with Global Deaf Connection, was a delegate to Lebanon with MIUSA as a deaf woman leader, and recently returned from working 6 weeks in Bhutan for the United Nations (UNICEF) program planning with their deaf schools.

Sarah reflects on her Gallaudet graduate program and states, "The International Development courses covered all types of development and exposed us to the different strategies that have been successful in working with people with disabilities. We learned about all the components that aids successful development such as governmental policy, economic growth, working on the ground, and so on. Many case studies were used to help us understand what is happening around the world and what positive changes have been taking place. Such a broad coverage of the field helped me understand the whole picture of development and helped me prepare for my work in different countries overseas."

Sarah would like to encourage all current and prospective International Development students to take advantage of all the resources and activities in the Washington D.C. area.  She states, "There are many organizations and agencies in the area that provides opportunities for networking. The more you are out there, the more known you will become and that will help you find employment after graduation."

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