ASU master's students pilot global career program

portrait of Sarah Muench

Master's students from Arizona State University’s Global Technology and Development program have piloted a networking event to connect to professionals in various parts of the world.

The Global Development Connect pilot could set a model for other programs as both the master’s program and the ASU Graduate and Professional Student Association begin to look into more professional outreach efforts, particularly for online students.

Global Technology and Development (GTD) students, from both the online and on-campus programs – whose global technology and development degree prepares them for careers in international relations and development – worked with the Graduate and Professional Student Association to spearhead the event. Using online tools, the students are meeting face-to-face with real-world experts across the globe.

“We have such a dynamic program in GTD, and our students are so talented that connecting them with professionals in different parts of the world was a necessity,” said Sarah Muench, a Global Technology and Development student who created and led the pilot project. “We were able to talk to international development professionals in Hong Kong, D.C., the United Kingdom and right here in Arizona.”

Muench, who will graduate in May, said she realized that she and her fellow students were well prepared by her professors and courses, but one link was missing: the path to career and internship opportunities.

She came up with the idea to have 15-minute, one-on-one time with professionals, all online. Muench said she had been through a similar in-person experience in the Walter Cronkite School of Journalism and Mass Communication, where she attended internship job fairs as an undergraduate.

“We were placed in interviews with various media outlets, and it usually ended either in an internship offer or a good connection with a real working journalist,” Muench said. “I wanted us to be able to take that important step with GTD in translating our degree into the real world.”

Muench, her fellow students and professors in the program worked to find development professionals to participate, including experts from USAID, international consultants, the U.S. Department of State, non-governmental organizations and nonprofits.

"It reinforced my information in terms of available options for the distant future," said Yasameen Aboozar, an ASU Global Technology and Development online student from Washington, D.C. "Not only does it serve students seeking job opportunities in distant areas and with other companies, but also it provides the chances for students to transition to departments and positions within their current companies relevant to their education."

Global Technology and Development offers a globally and technologically-focused program by introducing theories of systems technology, the interface between technology and social institutions, and their role in global development and change.

“Innovation is not simply the province of a changing technology," said Gary Grossman, Global Technology and Development director. "Our students are trained to be innovators in resolving problems with creative applications of existing knowledge and practice. Spearheading this initiative is just one example. Our students thrive both at home and abroad, and these skills are in demand worldwide.”

The Graduate and Professional Student Association's New Programs Committee, which supported the pilot program from the beginning, hopes to take it to a wider ASU graduate student audience to bring opportunities to a growing graduate and mobile student population.

“ASU is growing, and we have many more graduate students we want to reach with advocacy, funding, career and research opportunities,” said association president German Cadenas. “We support each other as graduate students, and with more students, ideas and action, we build a stronger community.”

For more information, visit or contact Gary Grossman, associate professor and director, Global Technology and Development.