Ford School students, faculty take study trip to Senegal

May 4, 2009

In February 2009, twenty-five graduate students from across the University of Michigan spent a week in the African country of Senegal as part of the Ford School's International Economic Development Program (IEDP). This annual program began in 1999 through the unique, collaborative efforts of the International Policy Students Association (IPSA) and Ford School faculty.

IPSA students do much of the work for the IEDP trip, selecting the country to be studied, planning the trip, fundraising, and making connections with relevant policymakers and organizations within the country of interest. The students were led in this year's efforts by Professor Katherine Terrell, who taught a 7-week course in preparation for the trip, giving the class a solid understanding of the economic development landscape of Senegal.

The trip itself took place over the University's Spring Break. Students met with a long list of local and national officials, NGOs, and others vested in the development of Senegal's economy. They compiled several papers on their findings and recommendations, shared them with Senegalese contacts, and also presented them to the U-M community at a special event in March.

Jonathan Shepard, a second-year MPP student, created a documentary based on the 2009 IEDP program. In this short film, "The 2009 International Economic Development Program: Senegal," Shepard interviewed IEDP students and affiliated faculty, and included footage taken during the trip to Senegal.

[Learn more about IEDP]