Fords on Friday
Fords on Friday is an opportunity for students to chat with alumni about their career path and industry trends. Alumni offer career advice and field questions from students.
All sessions in Spring 2021 will be on Zoom. Register in Handshake to receive the Zoom link!
Recorded sessions will be available the following week and accessible through Handshake.
February 12, 2021
1 p.m. EST
Jesse Isaacman-Beck ‘04
AAAS Science and Technology Policy Fellow, National Institutes of Health
Co-sponsored by the Department of Chemistry, the KINSC, and Health Studies
Jesse received his B.S. in Chemistry from Haverford College in 2004. After a brief stint teaching Chemistry with Peace Corps Tanzania, he worked as a research technician at the University of Pennsylvania to define the mechanisms underlying HIV transmission and pathogenesis in the brain. In graduate school at the University of Pennsylvania and as a postdoc at Stanford University, he studied neuroscience - defining how neural circuits work and how nerves regenerate. Recently Jesse pivoted to science policy as a AAAS Science and Technology Policy Fellow at the National Institutes of Health where he focuses on ensuring equity in biomedical research and on international science diplomacy. He's not sure where he'll end up ultimately, but he has chosen to deliberately pursue a meaningful career in balance with his family life and personal hobbies.
February 19, 2021
12 p.m. EST
Sang H. Cho ‘96
Co-Founder, KAI Media
East Asian Studies Major
Co-sponsored by the Department of East Asian Languages and Cultures and the Hurford Center for Arts & Humanities
Sang is a co-founder in KAI Media, a content and media start-up with the mission of bringing K-pop[culture] to its global fanbase. Sang focuses on developing business with global media and entertainment partners like Facebook and AEG, raising capital and long term strategy for the company.
Prior to starting KAI Media, Sang was Chief Strategy Officer of CJ E&M AMERICA. At CJ he developed and oversaw launches of several new businesses, including MNET AMERICA (K-pop music cable TV network) and KCON (the largest K-pop fan convention and concert event in North America).
Sang is a member of HC Multicultural Alumni Action Group and serves on the Media, Entertainment, Sports Alumni Affinity Group leadership committee. He is originally from Philadelphia, and currently lives in Los Angeles with his wife Lynn, daughter Sydney, son Benji and family baby Lucy (3 year old Shitzu-Schnauzer rescue).
February 26, 2021
12 p.m. EST
Jorge Soler ‘03
Assistant Member / Junior Faculty, New York Blood Center
Co-sponsored by the KINSC, the Department of Biology, and Health Studies
Jorge is currently an Assistant Member / Junior Faculty in the Laboratory of Infectious Disease Prevention at the New York Blood Center. He works with Project Achieve, conducting social and behavioral health research, and overseeing community engagement efforts, in HIV prevention and HIV care and treatment. He is a community-based researcher with experience in both public health practice and research. Jorge identifies as Latino, as queer, an immigrant, a previously undocumented person, and a first-generation college student. His personal and work experiences are tied to his research interests in health disparities and social determinants of health. In his research, Jorge focuses on the mental and sexual health of young adult queer men of color. Recognizing the limitations of sex-negative and risk-based frameworks often used to study queer men’s relationships with one another, Jorge is interested in using sex-positive and strengths-based approaches to understand the role of social support and social networks in this population.
March 5, 2021
12 p.m. EST
Kendra Norell ‘11
Community Engagement Coordinator, City of Richmond’s Office of Sustainability
Biology Major with Environmental Studies Concentration
Co-sponsored by the Department of Environmental Studies, the Department of Biology, and the Department of Growth and Structure of Cities
Kendra Norrell is the Community Engagement Coordinator for the City of Richmond's (VA) Office of Sustainability. She oversees the inclusion of racial equity and community input in the climate action planning process for the City of Richmond- RVAgreen 2050. Previously, Kendra worked in alternative transportation education with Virginia Commonwealth University and GRTC (local public transportation) and conservation education with Groundwork RVA through the National Park Service.
She is a graduate of Haverford College with a B.S. in Biology and a concentration in Environmental Studies and Virginia Commonwealth University with a M.U.R.P. in Environmental Planning. She is the Board President of RVA Rapid Transit, a local non profit focused on transit advocacy in the Richmond region.
March 12, 2021
12 p.m. EST
Saumya Varma '18
Managing Partner, Calcutta Foundation
Co-sponsored by the Center for Peace and Global Citizenship, Health Studies, the Microfinance and Impact Investing Initiative (MI3), Peace, Justice, and Human Rights Program, and the Department of Sociology
Saumya graduated from Haverford College in 2018 with a major in Sociology, minor in Health Studies and a concentration in Peace Justice and Human Rights. After working for a year in a law firm in Philadelphia, she returned to Calcutta to start Project Mayuri, an initiative under her grandmother's foundation, Calcutta Foundation. Project Mayuri is working in suburban and rural West Bengal to increase access to healthcare for women and children through monthly rural outreach clinics. It aims to highlight issues faced by women concerning their health that are often overlooked or unaddressed because they are considered taboo. Due to the start of the pandemic in March 2020, Mayuri redirected its efforts to provide COVID relief, sending dry rations, cooked food, masks, and other material to daily wage workers in the villages in the Diamond Harbor and slums in and around Kolkata. While these efforts were still underway, the catastrophic effects of Super Cyclone Amphan required Mayuri to shift gears and begin relief efforts for the thousands of people left without shelter, food, and safety.
March 19, 2021
12 p.m. EST
Iris Colon ‘06
Manager, Transformation & Growth, BDO
Economics Major, Theater Minor, and Peace & Conflict Studies Concentration
1st Recipient of the Mary Sharpless Sanford Scholarship
Co-sponsored by the Department of Environmental Studies, the Department of Growth and Structure of Cities, and the Department of Economics
Iris Colon is a Manager at BDO in the Transformation & Growth team focused on Strategy, Operational Effectiveness, Mergers & Acquisitions, and Learning & Development for the Advisory practice. Prior to BDO, she held a client-facing role at McLagan, an Aon company, where she worked with FinTech firms and major financial companies in the Caribbean on compensation design, job architecture, human capital strategy, performance management, and HR data and analytics. She has had many varied roles such as process improvement for a healthcare company, product development at a FinTech, workforce development in NYC government, and the strengthening of after-school programs via non-profit organizations.
Iris earned a B.A. in Economics from Haverford College and an M.B.A. in Finance and Global Business from The Stern School of Business at New York University where she had the opportunity to visit Argentina, Cuba, Haiti, and Israel through “Doing Business In” courses.
Iris has been an alumni volunteer for both Haverford and NYU. For Haverford, she has been a NYC area events organizer, Admissions Alumni Volunteer, and has sat on various committees such as the Young Alumni Advisory Group, Class of '06 Reunion, and Alumni Associations Awards Committee. Iris is currently in the Multicultural Alumni Action Group. For NYU Stern, Iris has been an Alumni Admissions Ambassador, and a committee member for the Stern Women in Business Alumnae Committee, and the Black & Hispanic Alumni Group. For NYU at large, Iris is currently on the NYU Alumni Club in CT.
Iris was born and raised in New York City. Her home is now in New Canaan, CT with her husband, Anthony, and her 4 year old son, Justin. She volunteers on the Social Committee of the Newcomers Club of New Canaan.
March 26, 2021
12 p.m. EST
Marcus Williams '12
High School Japanese Teacher, New Heights Academy Charter School
East Asian Studies Major
Co-sponsored by the Bi-College Education Program, the Center for Peace and Global Citizenship, the Department of East Asian Languages and Cultures, the Hurford Center for Arts & Humanities, and the Office of International Student Support
Marcus returns to his role at New Heights Academy, teaching Japanese language and culture to students in New York City's District 6. Before returning to this role, he worked as the Assistant Director of International Outreach Support at College Board, where he supported colleagues in strategy implementation, managed various databases for international secondary and higher education institutions, training and building resources for his colleagues. He has been a part of events such as their 2019 Chinese Bridge Delegation to connect US district and school leaders to Chinese schools, and a summer workshop series in Abu Dhabi to support the instructors of Advanced Placement.
Moving into his sixth year of teaching, Marcus has developed teaching materials to support students of various learning styles and levels to explore Japanese language and culture. Over the summers he has also taken high school students on one month overseas exchanges through organizations such as World Learning's The Experiment in International Living and CIEE's High School Summer Abroad.
Outside of work, Marcus is an avid student of world languages and dabbles in music, he also mentors a number of former students and current college-aged alumni to support their post-collegiate goals. He previously has participated in a panel for Multicultural Alumni Action Group's (MAAG) panel on networking. He is passionate about world language instruction in classrooms, and exploring methods to increase better awareness for students of color to be supported in cross-cultural opportunities in their secondary and collegiate careers.
12 p.m. EST
Ann Rivera ‘96
Senior Social Science Research Analyst, U.S. Dept of Health & Human Services, Administration for Children & Families
Co-sponsored by the Department of Psychology, the Department of Religion, and Health Studies
Ann Rivera began her federal career as a Society for Research in Child Development Executive Branch Policy Fellow at OPRE. Ann’s portfolio focuses broadly on increasing access to high-quality early care and education and improving human services for low-income and vulnerable children and families. To date, Ann’s portfolio at ACF includes: Child Care and Early Education Policy Research Consortium, Child Care Research Scholars, Early Childhood Training and Technical Assistance Cross-System Evaluation Project, National Research Center on Hispanic Children and Families, and Professional Development Tools to Improve the Quality of Infant and Toddler Care. In addition, Ann works on a variety of internal projects intended to communicate and bridge research to practice more effectively and to promote cultural and linguistic responsiveness in ACF services. While completing her doctoral training, Ann provided research support to community agencies in New York City, using survey, quasi-experimental, ethnographic, and participatory research methods. Ann received a B.A. in Religion from Haverford College and a Ph.D. in Community Psychology from New York University.