Skip to content
Toggle Left Side Navigation

Trying a Job on for Size

A summer internship has shown Mushfig Alili of Baku, Azerbaijan, what he does not want in a career and has propelled him into a search for a job more suited to his interests.

Alili recently graduated from Emporia State University with a bachelor’s degree in economics and a minor in business administration. He was chosen as a program and research intern with Planet4people through The Fund for American Studies, where he conducted research on tourism market trends in other countries, provided social media support, developed content for websites and identified funding opportunities.

As his supervisor travelled to other countries to support their local governments and hotels in developing more sustainable tourism, Alili researched the economy, politics and relevant issues of each country and sent the results to his supervisor to use during her presentations.

Alili said classes at Emporia State had helped him understand economic issues of other countries, and plans he had written in his marketing classes had enabled him to help her develop a marketing plan. He now is a Public Policy Fellow at The Fund for American Studies.

Despite his success in the internship, he struggled to envision himself doing those tasks as a career.

“After doing research the whole summer, I understood that it is not my cup of tea,” Alili said. “I found it very challenging to sit in front of the computer for eight hours every day.”

He began attending development workshops to try to determine what type of work would bring enjoyment and satisfaction at day’s end. 

“I have been working in events, membership and development departments since August, and I decided I want to pursue a career related to communications,” he said. 

The past summer’s internship, however, opened the door for another program that he finds more enjoyable. During his internship, Alili took an International Economic Policy class at George Mason University and also learned about classical liberalism.

Those studies led to an internship through the Charles Koch Institute at the American Legislative Exchange Council in Washington, D.C. 

“I think finding your career path is ongoing trial and error process where you work for different positions and decide which area or field is the best fit for your interests and capabilities,” Alili said.