lauren spurrier '84
Career field: Conservation
Job title: Managing Director Galapagos
Employer: World Wildlife Fund
In two to three sentences, please describe what your current position entails.
I manage WWF's Galapagos Program, including all aspects of representation, communications, marketing, fundraising, and daily management of the program. Our work in the islands uses policy, science, capacity building, and economics to address conservation threats and opportunities in the Galapagos Islands.
What has been your career path to date?
Peace Corps Volunteer in Paraguay (1984-1987); Inter-American Foundation (1987-1991); Peace Corps Staff working in Latin American, Albania and Romania (1991-1993); World Wildlife Fund (1993-present).
Which country(ies) has your work taken you to?
Latin America, Albania, Romania
How did your interest in working internationally develop?
Since I was a little girl I knew I wanted to join the Peace Corps. I did and I never looked back.
Which parts of your St. Olaf education best prepared you to work internationally?
A liberal arts education.
What is the most difficult or challenging aspect about working internationally?
What has been the most rewarding aspect of working internationally?
The diverse friendships I have made and working with incredible people working against all odds. Combining our talents across the WWF Global Network to achieve conservation success.
What does being a “global citizen” mean to you?
Being a global citizen, to me, means thinking globally and acting locally. It means acting on your values. It means working to leave a better earth for future generation. And it means recognizing the value in diversity and the role that people all over the planet play, and contributions they make. It means acknowledging our good fortune and accepting the responsibility to help others who are less fortunate.
What advice would you offer current students interested in working internationally?
Study foreign languages. Learn how to write and think critically. Take a semester abroad if you can.