If I got to describe GLI in one word, I would most likely say: different. Breaking down the word “different”, I would start from the moment I got in, this was the first program I approach as a young professional, not as a student. From that moment, I realized that it would certainly come with different objectives, expectations, and reward or failure. I can’t go further in writing without thanking everyone, from management to the students, who contributed to the success of the GLI and to the value it provides all around the region.
I believe this program was the needed next step in our journeys as professionals or entrepreneurs, especially as it placed 40 top notch minds together. It is a necessary step because it got past the growth phase to incorporate the requirements to sustain what we grew or helped grow, a business, our personality, or other potential projects. Moving from a student framework to a professional setup came with new boundaries and a new mindset, a mindset that I have struggled with in the first months, an issue I needed to talk through! I couldn’t have found better advice during this program from the different coaches and professionals I met along the three weeks. That was crucial to me in pursuing the development I want for myself as a young professional.
Overall, if I needed to choose a key moment of the whole program, it would definitely lead to a deep focus on the Washington DC week. Being highly interested in politics, it was intriguing to me to know how things work and function on The Hill. To know how the policies are shaped is one thing, but less valuable without becoming knowledgeable about how these policies are derived from local communities and how they impact the same communities. Being exposed to the different components of the ecosystem in DC like NGOs, the private sector, and state entities increased my understanding of the synergies between this spectrum of entities with different interests and missions and how we can take the best practices and empower them in our communities.
I can only reflect positively on GLI 2018.
-Badis Laabidi, GBI alumnus ’17