WEEKLY NEWS DIGEST (October 11-17, 2010)

TECHNOLOGY

From Merseyside to Madagascar – via Facebook; Ailie Tam used the power of social networking to win funding from a prestigious competition for charity work overseas.” By Anna Timms. Guardian (UK). October 9, 2010. The ailing jobs market never daunted graduate Ailie Tam who is setting up home in a hut in south-east Madagascar. Equipped with a degree in English literature and a master’s in social work from Liverpool John Moores University, she bypassed the obvious rungs of the career ladder and volunteered for an HIV prevention programme in Africa. Next she entered the Vodafone World of Difference competition, which pays for eight winners to work on a chosen charitable project abroad. Her African experience won her 4,000 Facebook votes and last month she set off for Madagascar with £45,000 of funding for her Aids work. While there she’ll gather material for a PhD at the University of East Anglia before embarking on a career in international development. Tam is one of a new generation of graduates who have harnessed the internet to market themselves and their skills to otherwise oblivious employers. “I’ve used social networking tools such as Twitter, Facebook and YouTube to get my name out there,” she says. “That and the fundraising and voluntary work have been invaluable. I wouldn’t have been a credible applicant for any job in international social work without them.”

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