If you’ve dreamed of working overseas, but don’t know where to begin, girl, I’ve got you covered. In this section, I spill the tea on all things global careers. You’ll also find my notes of what it’s like to be a U.S. diplomat in the Foreign Service.
We live in an interconnected world where goods, services, information, and technology move across geographic boundaries. By studying international business, you will get a rich understanding of global markets and regions around the world.
International communication (AKA transnational or global communication) is all about sending information, verbal and non-verbal, across geographic borders and within global settings. This field studies how communication is influenced and impacted by the economy, health, culture, and politics in a globalized world. International communication is a broad field that weaves through every facet of society.
Peace and Conflict Resolution students study the causes of conflicts that lead to disagreements on a micro and macro level. Students use their skills to create solutions that support peace.
International development looks to eradicate injustice and poverty by focusing on a region’s or country’s political, social, and economic growth. This is a broad field and practitioners can focus on the following areas: education, conflict and disaster, health, gender, environment, economics, human rights, governance, and culture.
International economics looks at the economic interactions between nations and how these activities affect the world. International trade predicts and examines investment, production, and trade across geographic borders. International economics and trade are important because we live in a globalized world. What happens in one country’s economy can have rippling effects throughout the world.
International education is when students and scholars move across geographic boundaries to learn and/or exchange ideas. This is done through academic study, teaching, or research. International education is important because it creates a mutual understanding between different cultures. Education is one of the first defenses against war and conflict, which contributes to security and peace.
Environmental issues affect our everyday lives. It can also exacerbate regional conflicts and put a country’s national security at risk. Similarly, environmental policies that society creates can have an impact on nature. International environmental policy students will learn the causes of environmental degradation and ways to prevent it.
If you want to learn how to protect our country and the world from cybersecurity threats, terrorism, and intra and interstate conflict, this career track may be for you. Security students learn how to create and examine plans for decreasing global threats to human security.
International law are agreements and rules that occur between countries or legally recognized international actors. Because we live in an interconnected world, legal issues can transcend a country’s borders. As a result, there is a need for lawyers who understand this.
Human rights are basic freedoms that all people should have regardless of their nationality, sex, race, ethnicity, or religion. People shouldn’t be discriminated against for who they are. If you want to advocate on behalf of the world’s most vulnerable populations, consider studying human rights.
Science and technology infiltrate every facet of our lives. And while the advancement of science and tech are usually positive, there can be drawbacks. There is a growing need for STEM experts to weigh in on science and technology in international affairs.
Representation is huge. I highlight women of color killing the game in their travels and in the international affairs career field. They share how were able to travel the world and/or land their dream career. If they can do it, so can you.
There are so many amazing jobs within the international affairs career field. While this is not an exhaustive list, I highlight a few to consider. Some require advanced education. To see a list of jobs that do not require a ton of school, but still allow you to work and travel overseas, visit
When governments and private organizations create programs in other countries, they want to know if their initiatives are successful. Monitoring and Evaluation specialists report on a program’s successes and challenges. Specialists need to have strong written communication, analytical and technical skills. They also need to be able to travel.
Diplomats (aka foreign service officers) represent their countries overseas. United States’ diplomats serve to “promote peace, support prosperity, and protect American citizens while advancing the interests of the U.S. abroad.” They have a variety of duties. These responsibilities may include, but are not limited to, helping Americans overseas return home, monitoring and informing our government of political situations in foreign countries, and hosting workshops to promote STEM education.
Trade specialist work to reach economic agreements between countries.They monitor global markets, federal and foreign regulations, and help businesses overseas. These professionals can work in a private company or for the government. Trade specialists need a bachelor’s degree to qualify for entry-level jobs. They usually work in an office setting and have the opportunity to travel.
These language experts are responsible for analyzing and translating messages to protect the United States from domestic and international threats. There are many jobs looking for individuals proficient in one or more critical languages including, but not limited to, Arabic, Chinese, Farsi, Korean, Persian, Russian, and Somali.
International lawyers deal with the rules, regulations, and agreements between countries. However, it’s a broad field. These lawyers can focus on disputes including businesses, trade agreements, human rights, and immigration / citizenship. There are even space lawyers who help countries govern outer space.
Program assistants provide logistical and administrative services to support the operations of a program. These professionals are all-stars in information management.
There is a huge demand for native English speakers to teach in many countries. Some countries require a bachelor’s degree. Others want to see a TESOL, TEFL, CELTA, or DELTA certificate. Teaching English overseas can be a great way to impact lives and live and work in another country.
Foreign affairs analyst are international affairs experts. They can specialize in one or more areas including, but not limited to trade, terrorism, security, U.S. Foreign Policy, the environment, and/or regional areas. Their expertise is needed to develop or change policies. They usually work for the government, private sector, or the media.