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New York Times columnist Nick Kristof just announced his 2010 Win a Trip contest. The lucky winner will accompany Kristof on a reporting trip to Africa to cover global poverty. This contest is a rare opportunity for a university student to experience a part of the world that few Americans see with such a seasoned expert like Kristof. The winner also earns the privilege to share her or his experiences on the New York Times blog.

Kristof offers a taste (or maybe it’s a warning!) of what the winner might expect from the trip:

It won’t be comfortable or glamorous. Maybe we’ll interview a president, but far more time will be spent squatting in thatch-roof huts, listening to villagers. Within The Times, my colleagues say that first prize is one trip with Kristof, second prize is two trips. ...

As the media relations coordinator at CGD, I vigilantly read, watch, and listen to news coverage of development; Kristof’s ability to connect readers in wealthy countries with the struggles of poor people in the developing world is transcendent. This contest is just one example.

We're honored that Kristof choose to collaborate with CGD by asking us to vet the applications. Sandy Stonesifer and I will examine the applications and select a short list of finalists from which Kristof and his assistant will select the winner. Sandy and I are excited to contribute to the contest, though we’re more than a little disappointed that we won’t be joining Kristof on the trip!

For more information about the contest, visit Kristof’s column and blog. Good luck to all the applicants!