Posted by: ampedabroad | June 16, 2009

When the Going Gets Tough, the Tough Get AMPED!

On its radio show yesterday, NPR did a feature story on the 2009 graduates from Duke, with emphasis on those seeking careers in banking.  As the story revealed, many of the graduates are having a tough go when it comes to landing a job in their field of study.  No surprises there.  As a result,  many are settling for jobs in other areas that are not remotely connected to their educational backgrounds.

Today’s hard economic times are not unique to Duke nor are they unique to those desirous of a career in banking and finance.  It’s tough all around.  While it is discouraging to feel that all your hard work is for nought, there are two upsides. Time and opportunity.

You have to ask yourself, “When the economy does turn around (and it will), when will I have this much free time again?”   After all,  when you do find ‘THE JOB’, you will be spending the majority of your time at the office.  No more month long Christmas breaks. No more 3 month summer vacations (unless you are a teacher.)  And no more spring breaks (again, not unless you are a teacher.)

 You should also ask yourself, “What opportunities does this free time afford me and how can I make it count in the long run.  For when this thing does turn around, not only will you be competing with those that have more work experience, but you will also be competing with all your classmates and the other graduating classes that  preceded you and have too had to endure this economic crisis that has now lasted for several years.  So what do you do in the meantime to prepare and position yourself?

Well you know what they say…when the going gets tough, the tough get AMPED.  Well, that’s what we say, at least.  AMPED Abroad, that is.  Time and opportunity are on your side.  Because we live in a global economy/society, it is only fitting that your background have some global attributes.

By signing on to volunteer or intern with AMPED Abroad you are literally doing a world of good for others as well as yourself.  Here’s how:

1. When you volunteer abroad, of course it’s about helping out the local communities.  It’s also about you learning to appreciate what another culture has to offer and developing a sense of understanding of what life is like abroad.

2. Because there will be other volunteers and interns from other parts of the world, including the U.S., Canada, and the UK you immediately expand your network of friends, and potential professional contacts on a global scale.

3. Since we work with developing countries, the pace of doing things, the level of organization, and the availability of resources will demand more of you.  You will have to learn to adapt, to be flexible, and to exercise initiative all at the same time.  Critical skills that every hiring manager looks for in a prospective employee.

4. Finally, by volunteering in Latin America, you will have the opportunity to learn Spanish as a second language.  That’s another feather in your cap as foreign language skills are becoming more crucial in today’s job market.

So you see volunteering or interning abroad is one of the best investments you can make right now.  Who knows, you may even discover another career passion.

For more information about AMPED Abroad, please visit and simply click on the project link(s) for the volunteer opportunity that interests you; and please also feel free to phone or email us concerning more detailed information about our internship opportunities.


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