2014 CASI Student Programs: Internships and Travel Fund Winners!

CASI 2014 Internship and Travel Fund Winners

We are delighted to announce the 2014 CASI Student Programs Interns and Travel Funds for Research Winners! The 2014 internship class includes fifteen undergraduates studying in three of Penn’s undergraduate schools, the College of Arts and Sciences, School of Engineering, and the Wharton School, and one graduate student from the School of Veterinary Medicine. Our five Travel Funds Winners include one undergraduate and four graduate students from three of Penn’s schools, School of Arts and Sciences, the Wharton School, and School of Design.

We are thankful for the unwavering support and commitment from our Student Programs Alumni who spent countless hours speaking with prospective applicants on campus during “Chai Chats,” via Skype, and through Adobe Connect information sessions. After internship selections were finalized, our students were busy connecting with the new class, answering questions, and volunteering to be “CASI Buddies” for this year’s 2014 interns. Hectic schedules and long work hours aside, CASI students always make time.

A summer in India is not just another experience tacked onto the resume. The white board in my office is packed with student quotes and the most reflective ones usually come out during internship interviews. It is clear that the meaning and relevance of a summer experience in India continues to evolve during our students’ time at Penn and as they start their careers.

Reflections: CASI Interns

While we are waiting for some new blog posts, I wanted to share some reflections from our CASI students that I jotted down during the internship interviews.

“You won’t see the inequality as much as you might think, because it is equal in its poverty.”
– Aashna Desai, W’16, CASI 2013 Intern, Samaj Pragati Sahayog, Madhya Pradesh

“I became comfortable in my own skin and being who I am. And if I can work in rural India, I can do anything.”
– Alex Iqbal, W’15, CASI 2013 Intern, Chirag, Uttarakhand

“One of my most important takeaways was that change is really slow.”
– Jason Maccabee, C’14, CASI 2013 Intern, Chirag, Uttarkhand

“I saw myself changing. I learned what I am capable of, which was not at all what I expected.”
“One of the important qualities to have is humility and an interest in learning, so much you don’t understand and you learn to admit what you don’t know.”
– Eliana Machefsky, C’14, CASI 2012 Intern, Educate Girls, Rajasthan

“It was a pivotal time for me to become more reflective.”
“They told me that people come and go in this clinic, but Christina, we are really going to miss you.’”
– Christina Wu, C’14, CASI 2012 Intern, Aravind Eye Care Systems, Tamil Nadu

CASI 2014 Student Programs

Now in its eighth year, we are excited to announce the largest class to date. For the internship program, CASI is collaborating with six partner organizations in India: Aravind Eye Care Systems, Central Himalayan Rural Action Group (Chirag), Dalit Indian Chamber of Commerce and Industry (DICCI), Leap Skills Academy, IMFR Rural Channels and Services, and Samaj Pragati Sahayog (SPS). For the Travel Funds for Research, we encourage proposals from both Penn undergraduates, preferably juniors writing a thesis related to contemporary India, and graduate students focused on contemporary India or India in a comparative context. Funds for the CASI Student Programs are made possible through the support of Penn’s Office of the Vice Provost for Global Initiatives in conjunction with Penn Abroad and Penn’s International Internship Program (IIP) and through the generous support of CASI donors, many of whom are Penn Alumni.

2014 CASI Summer Interns

Aravind Eye Care Systems, Madurai, Tamil Nadu
Jane Chen, C W’16, Biochemistry, Operations and Information Management (OPIM)
Zach Chen, C W’16, Vagelos Program in Life Sciences and Management: Biology, Finance, Statistics
Abhinay Ramachandran, SEAS’16, Bioengineering

Central Himalayan Rural Action Group (Chirag), Sitla, Uttarakhand
Caroline Kee, C’15, Heath and Societies
Aardra Rajendran, SEAS’16, Bioengineering
Mary Stachofsky, C’15, Economics, Visual Studies
Eileen Wang, C’16, Health and Societies

Dalit Indian Chamber of Commerce (DICCI), Pune, Maharashtra
Sarah Kho, W’16, Finance,
Shreya Zaveri, W’16, Operations and Information Management (OPIM), Management

IMFR Rural Channels and Services, Chennai, Tamil Nadu
Leah Davidson, W’16, Finance and Management
Nikhil Devnani, W’16, Finance and Accounting

Leap Skills Academy, Yamuna Nagar, Harayana
Sofia Bernier, C’15, Politics, Philosophy, and Economics
William Cao, C’17, Biological Basis of Behavior, Economics
Kristi Littleton, C’15, Biology

Samaj Pragati Sahayog, Dewas, Madhya Pradesh
Daniela Castillo de Luna, C’15, Urban Studies, Architecture
Carrie Childs, V’16, Penn Veterinary School

2014 Summer Travel Funds for Research Winners

Emma Boswell, Ph.D. Candidate, Wharton School, Healthcare Management and Economics
The Radiating Effects of Quality Uncertainty of Pharmaceuticals in India

Alexandra Hughes-Caley, MFA Candidate, School of Design, Interdisciplinary Art
Exploring the Social Landscape of Contemporary Rape Cultures in India: Engaging Art

Tanvi Mittal, C’15, Anthropology, College of Arts and Sciences
Ethnography of Karen Tribe in the Andaman Islands

Prakirti Nangia, Ph.D. Candidate, School of Arts and Sciences, Political Science
Social Assistance: The New Silver Bullet in Development Policy

Sudev Sheth, Ph.D. Candidate, School of Arts and Sciences, South Asia Studies
People, princes, and paramountcy in India: A social history of statecraft and governance in Baroda, 1721-1949

CASI 2014 Intern Placements

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About Aparna Wilder

Associate Director, CASI Student Programs and Outreach After graduating from Penn, Aparna spent six years living and working in India. She volunteered with Indicorps and started her own production house, global rickshaw, that makes short films in collaboration with NGOs and non-profit organizations. Aparna is a TED India Fellow and holds an MPA from Columbia University.