60 seconds with the international team


What do all the different teams do at Chevening? To find out more about what one particular team does, we spoke to Rachel and Nora from the international team...

Chevening: Hi Rachel and Nora, can you tell us what was your route into working in the international team at Chevening?

Rachel: I was a UK programme officer at Chevening before I joined the international team. Our organisation encourages internal secondments so when the opportunity came up I thought it would be interesting to learn more about the recruitment and applications side of Chevening.

Nora: Before starting my current role I studied for my master’s degree in International Relations at the University of Bath. Upon graduation I interned at a diplomatic institution and then I started working at a foreign mission in London. I first discovered Chevening through my studies at the University of Bath, which is a Chevening partner university.

Chevening: What countries do you work with in your job?

Rachel: I work with British embassies and high commissions in south-east Asia and east Africa. It is a great time to work with sub-Saharan African embassies and high commissions due to the Foreign Office’s strategic engagement in Africa right now.

Nora: My portfolio is varied. I work with embassies in countries in southern Africa, some countries in eastern Europe and I also cover parts of the Asia-Pacific region. I also work with some of the smallest island nations in the world, such as Nauru and Tuvalu.

Chevening: Can you share a recent highlight with us?

Rachel: A recent highlight would be attending the Foreign Office’s engagement event with Chevening Scholars from across Africa. Over 150 scholars from 36 African countries met with FCO desk officers who specialise in African policy issues for an open and in-depth exchange of ideas and issues.

Nora: I attended and took part in organising the latest Chevening regional conference in Johannesburg, South Africa, last November. Chevening staff from sub-Saharan Africa as well as Chevening Secretariat staff attended the conference which aimed to provide training to Chevening staff at embassies and high commissions and also to exchange best practice.

Chevening: What are you most looking forward to in 2020?

Rachel: I’m looking forward to working with the posts overseas for the next few months to help them to select the best candidates at interview.

Nora: I’m looking forward to interviewing talented candidates and welcoming them at our Chevening Orientation event in October.

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