Maintaining Global Trade Relations

At TCU, Amy Burdett gained invaluable international experience in Europe. With a staff position with the Foreign Agricultural Service, she has visited more than 25 countries and works on trade relationships throughout Asia.

Amy Burdett began taking political sciences classes during her freshman year, but the San Antonio native always had international goals.

"I studied abroad for a year, half in France and half in the UK,” said Burdett. “To get international experience but also to work on my language skills and to do more international affairs classes."

Burdett participated in the TCU in London program but arranged the Paris portion of her studies through the Center for International Studies office. Later, she completed a summer internship with the State Department working at the U.S. Embassy in Ireland.

"The kinds of places I worked and (the) exposure I got helped when I was getting into graduate school and internships in Washington," said Burdett. "Because I had a background in things that were similar to the kind of work I wanted, I think it was noticed more on my résumé."

Burdett attended George Washington University's Elliott School of International Affairs in Washington, D.C., finishing her master's degree in 1998. Eventually, she applied for a job with the U.S. Department of Agriculture's Foreign Agricultural Service through a program now called Pathways, where graduate and undergraduate students can apply for entry-level employment.

"I was able to get into a government position in something I like doing, and I have been there ever since," said Burdett. "I have been with the same agency for the last 16 years, but I have done several different jobs".

"People think U.S. government means staying in the same place the whole time, but it doesn’t have to be."

Today, Burdett holds a supervisory position overseeing bilateral trade relationships in agriculture between the United States and Asia.

"I went to India in January. I have been to most of Asia," said Burdett. "The fun thing about traveling with agriculture is you get to actually go out into the field and see the culture. I've had the opportunity to really get out and see the world."

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