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Broadening my view of the world through international development

Arielle on how MSc in International Development with Economics helped turn her passion for helping ‘developing’ countries to become ‘developed’ into a career.

A young woman (Arielle Salvary) smiling.
Arielle also has political ambitions and would one day like to be Prime Minister of Trinidad.

Arielle Salvary studied MSc International Development with Economics, graduating in 2022, and currently works as a Consulting Analyst for government advisory firm, FMA. She is also the Co-Founder and Director of Sunday Market Network and a One Young World Ambassador.

She tells us about life as an international student studying a master’s at Bath.

Why do you decide to do a master’s degree?

I did my undergraduate degree in International Relations with Economics, but I wanted to have a particular focus on how we can get developing countries from ‘developing’ to 'developed'.

I felt this International Development course would be perfect for me because it also allowed me to specialise with economics.

Why did you choose Bath?

I chose Bath because I didn't know anyone going to Bath and I wanted to go somewhere that would give me the opportunity to make new friends and meet new people - people that may have differing perspectives to me, to improve my own view of the world.

I made friends with people from different countries, which really broadened my perspective, in terms of looking at how different people see different issues. That was something that I really valued about learning at Bath, and of course, it’s also consistently one of the top ten universities in the UK.

Was there anything else you liked about the course?

I think that sense of community was really strong – everyone on the course always arranged social gatherings.

This was really good because going out socially really helped in terms of integration. This was my first time living in a different country as well, so that also made the transition much easier.

‘I made friends with people from different countries, which really broadened my perspective, in terms of looking at how different people see different issues.’
Arielle Salvary MSc International Development with Economics (2022)

Where has your career taken you since completing your master’s?

I actually got a job offer before I graduated thanks to the University of Bath’s jobs website.

I currently work as a Consulting Analyst in the development field. We work with governments to help them save money, improve the roll-out of digital public services and help with the digital transformation of government as well.

We also help them with their financial processes such as procurement, implementing spending controls, and making their financial systems more transparent, so there's less opportunity for corruption.

We have some clients in the Middle East and we also have previous clients in Latin America and the Caribbean.

How has your master’s influenced your career?

I definitely think the master’s has helped me in my current job.

In terms of economic policy, one of the aspects of my job is to help governments choose projects to boost business and to boost economic engagement within a country. There were certain modules within the course that really helped me think about which projects would be most useful.

The course also encouraged me to think about how we can make sure the projects we suggest are inclusive, and not just in terms of gender, but also disability. It has helped me to consider and suggest projects that not only work for governments, but also reduce inequalities and ensure everyone has the same level of access to these programmes.

Could you tell us about the Sunday Market Network?

We started this organisation to increase young people’s awareness and engagement with what's happening in politics in Trinidad. A lot of people weren't aware of why it was important to vote - why local government elections matter, why certain political systems are in place, how the budget works.

People just weren't aware of their civic rights or things that we as citizens should be able to access, in terms of government data.

We started quite small with a website and we publish articles on different topics, such as the budget, crime, domestic abuse and more recently climate change. We are now branching out and planning the next phase of our social drives to increase awareness of certain issues and bring people together to discuss them.

What are your aspirations for the future?

One day I would like to be Prime Minister of Trinidad, that's quite far off, but I really would like to get into politics. When I was at Bath, I got involved with One Young World and at the conference in 2022, I decided politics was the path I wanted to take.

I had a conversation with another One Young World delegate from Haiti; this was so impactful on me. He said the only way you can actually affect change in a massive way is if you do it yourself, if you go into politics and get your voice heard. He really inspired me.

Would you recommend doing a postgraduate course at Bath?

I definitely would recommend doing a postgraduate course at Bath.

If there's a particular topic of your undergraduate degree that you didn't feel like you got the opportunity to explore further, you can do that with a postgraduate degree, especially with the dissertation component.

It really helps you think about a particular issue and develop your thinking around a specific concept and what has contributed to the issue. It also helps you think about what solutions could be possible.

Initially one of the main reasons that I chose to do a master’s was because I wanted to explore my dissertation topic more and I felt the University of Bath would allow me to really do this. I was especially interested in what other countries were doing in relation to it.

It absolutely fulfilled all expectations! The one thing my master’s really helped me with was having a more in depth understanding of my topic and what needs to be done to resolve the issues. And maybe when I run for Prime Minister, it will be a big part of what I want to do.

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