Development & Diplomacy in the Middle East with Lydia Nandakumaran

“A degree doesn’t necessarily give you a destiny. A degree is a platform that you need to use to walk in your own path.”


LYDIA NANDAKUMARAN is a dynamic public diplomat who has excelled in the field of development, whether its working in philanthropy, international aid, or building her own organization from the ground up. Her and I both attended the same graduate program, but years apart, and then we met via Linkedin. I love the reality check she gives us on how to decide if you’re ready for grad school. Her frank advice about what it is like to create her own work will inspire you to start yours.

Themes: civil society, Egypt, Syria, social entrepreneurship, public diplomacy

Takeaways: Know why you’re doing what you’re doing. Don’t be afraid to be a pioneer, walking out your own unique destiny.

Lydia’s day job is working in disaster response and humanitarian issues as a Senior Resource Development Officer at International Medical Corps. Her organization is A Remnant Remains, a registered 501(c)3  non-profit organization committed to poverty reduction and sustainable development in the garbage villages of Egypt. You can follow her work on Twitter and Facebook.