While civil service employees represent America’s interests in other countries, international aid workers export some of our abundant goodwill abroad. People who work for aid organizations like USAID and the Peace Corps work to improve the health, economic outlook and education of people living in developing nations.
International aid workers help countries that are struggling or recovering from economic crises, natural disasters, war, famine and despotism. Depending on their experience, aid workers might teach in Afghanistan, organize relief convoys to combat areas in Somalia, or introduce new heat-resistant crops to nations throughout Africa.
The desire to help others is a plus if you want to be an international aid worker — but it’s not the only prerequisite. You also need to have a background in a relevant area, like agriculture, engineering, private enterprise, education, health or crisis stabilization.
Becoming an international aid worker has its rewards — and not just the gratification of helping people in other countries. Some international aid workers earn salaries well into the six figures.