Alumni stories

Humphrey Gandolgor's Story

When I landed in the U.S. in the Summer of 2011 to study in Michigan State University as a Hubert Humphrey Fellow 2011-2012, I was so excited because I felt it was a great chance to pursue my goal, which was to expand my professional experience and academic knowledge in Human Resource Management in order to better our community by training Mongolian human resources professionals to be able to empower Mongolian people in the future.

But when I arrived there, I felt so sad and disappointed, because I missed my family terribly and had a serious homesickness from the beginning throughout the autumn of 2011 that influenced my studies badly. I once thought of withdrawing my program and returning home to come back to my family. But I didn’t want to give up easily. I remembered Robert Kiyosaki’s words "You will always have time to give up, but why now?" Meanwhile, my Humphrey classmates who were away from their families were handling their homesickness very well. Then I realized that instead of feeling sad and having homesickness, I needed to keep myself busy and spend my free time after school effectively.

Therefore, I found a way to move on and follow the goal I had planned. In addition to this, I decided to explore and develop myself by shifting my weaknesses to strengths and initiated a project for me called "Personal Development Management" in November 2011. Then my development journey started with a positive attitude and a strong energy. Within a scope of my project, I joined many clubs and associations such as the International Toast Masters club, the "Better Living" Book Readers’ Club, the MSU Student Entrepreneurship Association, the Young Women and Strong Leaders Club, and the International Volunteers Speakers Club. Among those activities, the Toastmasters club and the book club challenged me greatly to develop new skills: public speaking and analytical skills.

As a member of MSU Student Entrepreneurship, I tried to encourage and train students who wanted to be entrepreneurs by developing their mindset. We also tried to refresh and change the traditional way to teach students and initiated an innovative project within our community in East Lansing. During my membership in the Toastmasters club for six months, I won the Club and Area level Public Speaking Competitions and took third place at the district level competition thanks to practicing my speech skills every week. As a volunteer speaker, I presented about my country’s culture and economic perspective to college students, professors, and community residents.

I also learned great personality traits from other Humphrey classmates and gained some of those characteristics such as a sense of humor from East European fellows, persistence from Cambodian and Vietnamese friends, a strong self-confidence from a Burkina Faso fellow and friendship from a Nepalese fellow, and loyalty from Pakistani fellow respectively.

During my Humphrey year, I read 25 personal development books, studied six academic courses, completed three professional internships, presented 10 speeches about Mongolia, attended more than 12 professional workshops and networked with about 250 professional people. Most importantly, I was inspired by the Humphrey experience to write a book about success devoted to everyone who wants to be successful and needs support and advice to pursue their goals. I will write about my book in more detail in the next article of this newsletter.

At the end of Humphrey Program, I had the chance to give a speech about my Humphrey experience at the Year End Retreat for Humphrey Fellows. As I concluded in my speech "Perfect Year in My Life," I discovered myself in depth, broadened my perspective, explored new things, and planned my life in the long run which was one of my biggest achievements. I can surely say that the Humphrey year was the Perfect Year in My Life. I brought many great ideas and a lot of confidence with me from the Humphrey program and now I’m ready to implement my new knowledge and experience in practice.

Gandolgor Purevjav has B.S in Business Administration and M.S. in International Business. She has recently completed the Hubert Humphrey Program 2011-2012, a Fulbright sister program. She specialized in Human Resource (HR) Management. Ms. Purevjav is Founder and Executive Director of the Ganabell HR Center. She is aiming to conduct HR training for public and private sector company development, capacity building, operational efficiency, and performance management and planning to run youth leadership programs.