Today Kristina Kolesnikova manages tourist programs at Ayan Tourist and Travel Company, one of the leading tour operators in Turkmenistan. The 19-year old says that she got this job because of her participation in a USAID entrepreneurship training program.
“Thanks to USAID-funded courses, I have not only acquired valuable knowledge in economics and business, but also gained leadership skills, became more determined and self-confident,” she said. “These skills played a huge role at the job interview.”
Kolesnikova was a secondary school student when she first came across the USAID-supported program. The program was teaching economics and business programs at Kolesnikova’s school, and she decided to enroll. The courses sparked the teenager’s interest and encouraged her to consider business management as a future career option. The program provided Kolesnikova with a wide variety of knowledge and skills in economics and business, and cultivated such personal qualities as leadership, responsibility, communicability, and self-reliance.
“I was impressed how accessibly and clearly the USAID program explained such complicated concepts as economics, management, and business,” says Kolesnikova. “I am much obliged to USAID for the opportunity to participate in these courses.”
By the time Kolesnikova graduated from school, she was determined to pursue jobs related to business and economics. She soon came across a job advertisement from Ayan Tourist and Travel Company, and submitted her application. Even though Kolesnikova had no work experience in the travel industry, and the competition for the position was steep, the young woman was selected to fill the vacancy.
The new job keeps Kolesnikova busy, but she finds time to participate in the alumni activities of the USAID program. Together with other young professionals that had studied business and entrepreneurship, Kolesnikova helps organize and conduct events for young men and women interested in economics, and promotes these programs to the country’s youth.
Last updated: June 28, 2013