Back to Top

My Time at IMA as a Summer Intern

by Rachel Twine


As part of my Masters degree in International Development, I had the opportunity to complete a 6 week placement with IMA International.

I arrived 2 weeks before the start of their Summer Training Programme in Brighton (Leadership and Management and Monitoring and Evaluation) and spent this time becoming acquainted with how IMA operates, the build-up to the course and researching the theories and concepts IMA employ in their organisation. 

My other tasks involved writing a blog post for the website, creating an energiser learning resource that trainers and participants could use, and collating data from the back-end of the website to find trends and patterns in participation over the course of the years. Alongside this, I also helped with some administration duties and preparation for IMA’s 35th birthday celebrations!

Some examples of the collated data..

Figure 2: Total number of male and female participants attending IMA’s 4 main courses between 2012-2017

Percentage make-up of the top 5 organisation types

Figure 11: World map diagram of the total participation percentage by region


I also spent several days at the training course, both observing how the trainers and participants worked and also contributing to the course as well, especially in group tasks. These days were great fun and I learnt a lot about participatory learning and capacity building, which linked well with my university studies. I also thoroughly enjoyed learning about each participant, the organisation they were from and their role within it. Not only did this provide me with a greater insight into the diverse and challenging careers one can pursue in development, but it also showed me the importance of the training IMA run. 


The social events held during the training programme were also a big highlight for me. It was great to learn about the participants and trainers as professionals in the development field, but it was also so much fun to learn about them as people, and their different experiences and cultures. These memories are a big part of my time here at IMA, and I know they will resonate with me and provide inspiration for when I pursue my career in development.

After my placement I will be finishing my MA with an analytical report of participatory approaches and capacity-building in development and will be drawing on all I have learnt with IMA. I hope I am able to produce a report that reflects the complex ideas and conversations that have been discussed over the past 6 weeks concerning adult learning, participation, and development as a whole. 


Interning with IMA has been an excellent first experience for life after education, and I look forward to seeing where this takes me within the field of development!


It was a pleasure to have had you join us Rachel, thank you for the work you did, your insights, your kind words and bringing such a positive attitude, we also look forward to seeing where you go next, no doubt you will go far!  All the best from the IMA team :)