Sebastien Gasquet (MPIA '14)
In the summer of 2013, I had the privilege of interning with the West African Network for Peacebuilding (WANEP). This NGO is based in Accra, Ghana and is present throughout all of West Africa. WANEP is a civil society organization that works on many issues related to conflict prevention, such as dialogue and mediation, and have partnered with the Economic Community of West African States on many programs related to peacekeeping. I was assigned to the organization's Peace Monitoring Center, where I collected information of security threats and issues throughout West Africa, particularly in French speaking countries. As a result, I closely followed events such as Mali's presidential election and the aftermath of civil war in Cote d'Ivoire. It was a particularly interesting time to be in Ghana, as a legal challenge to last year's presidential election was being debated before the Supreme Court, and was intensely followed throughout the country. WANEP invited me to attend some very interesting events related to the petition, namely the National Peace Summit, which brought together representatives from all of Ghana's political parties, traditional chieftains and representatives of civil society, dedicated to maintaining peaceful dialogue between the parties in preparation for the verdict. I was very pleased to use some of the skills GSPIA has taught me. I think this experience was a great opportunity to discover the career path I wish to embark upon.