FORDS ON FRIDAY: Rahul Munshi ’06

Posted on: October 24, 2014


The CCPA welcomes Rahul Munshi ’06 to our FORDS ON FRIDAY blog.
Rahul represents individuals in employment and civil rights litigation with
Console Law Offices LLC in Philadelphia. He is also the co-founder of the
Haverford College Lawyers Network.Rahul_Munshi_RGB Thank you, Rahul!

First and foremost, you should know that Haverford’s own internal career resources are growing and developing at an exceptional pace. There is a tremendous amount of data out there through Haverford’s directories, affinity groups, and newsletters, among others. Use these resources – it’s a good time to be a student at Haverford College. Beyond what Haverford itself can provide, here are some thoughts I have about the thoughts that are probably running through your head.

  1. I don’t know where to start. I literally have no idea where to begin.

You’re a current student and you don’t know exactly what you want to do with your career for the next 50 years? Congratulations – you are probably in the 99.9% of 18-22 year olds who feel this way. So how do you start to figure out what you want to do after graduation?

First, learn what people do all day long. Lots of people work a huge portion of every single day. What are they actually *doing* all day? Find out. Scour the internet for information about different fields and specific jobs within those fields – not just job titles; actual job descriptions.

Here’s a typical interaction that I witness all the time, and not just between alums and students:

Person A:         Nice to meet you. What do you do?
Person B:         I’m a consultant in Philadelphia with XYZ Company.
Person A:         Cool. How do you like it?
Person B:         It’s good.
Person A:         Great. Nice to meet you!

Absolutely zero substantive information was relayed in this conversation that you could not find spending one minute on Google or LinkedIn. Now you’ve actually met the person you want to talk to you, so take advantage of it. When you ask someone what they “do,” you’re not just asking their title. That’s easy. Ask what they actually *do* in their job. If you’re trying to figure out what field/area/industry peaks your interest, just learning someone’s title does not get you anywhere. People like to talk about themselves. Ask that person what he or she actually *does* on a daily basis; who they work with; the challenges of the job; the rewarding aspects of the job; how he or she got to this job. The more you know, the easier it will be to further pursue this field or cross it off your list.

  1. Why would a super successful and busy alum want to talk with me? I’m an average student with a regular background who has done nothing spectacular since the day I was born.

Well, that’s not exactly true. You’re a student at Haverford College, which is a pretty nice achievement in my book.

When Michael Gordon ’04 and I co-founded the Haverford College Lawyers Network, we worked off of one fundamental premise: current students and recent alums often believe that graduating from Haverford College results in a disadvantage in the job market because our alumni body is miniscule compared to many schools and we cannot offer the same level of resources as larger universities. This is a false belief that wrongly diminishes the power of community. I have found, especially as time has gone on, that this small community is actually one of Haverford’s greatest assets. We like to see each other succeed; we like to help each other out; we like to act as connectors for others in the Haverford community.

You’re not bothering an alum if you reach out and ask for advice. Chances are that the alum himself or herself got to his or her position through the help of someone else – perhaps even another Haverford alum. The desire to give back and help bring someone else up the ladder is extremely strong. Keep telling yourself this: you, as a student, are giving me, as an alum, an opportunity to give back.

Frankly, it’s extremely flattering for a student to say to me, “I want to do what you do. You are awesome. How did you become so awesome?” You saying that makes me feel good. People like to talk about themselves. I will carve time out of my busy schedule to talk about myself, and so will everyone I know.

  1. I changed out of my Haverford sweatshirt, put on my nice shoes, and got myself to a Haverford alumni event. What do I even do here?

Take some pressure off of yourself. The truth is that group settings are difficult. Think about dating reality television shows where one person is surrounded by a gaggle of potential suitors. They stand around awkwardly and try to shoehorn an intimate conversation into an atmosphere that is catered towards meet-and-greets. Don’t fall into that trap. Use this group event as a way to introduce yourself and get basic information about what people do (again, what they actually “do” and not just their title). Use this five minute interaction as a springboard to a fuller conversation set for a later date. Do not try to solicit real advice in this setting – it won’t work. Say to the person, “It was really nice speaking with you. Next time I’m in [insert city] would you mind meeting me for coffee so that I can learn more about what you do?” Or, “I’m really interested in what you do. Would you mind talking with me over the phone soon so that I can learn more? I can email you and we can set up a time.”

Keep in mind that when you go to these events, sure, some of the attendees will be more experienced and senior alums. But others will be your relative contemporaries – perhaps you even overlapped with one or two while at Haverford. Remember, they just went through exactly what you’re going through right now.

You see that boy over there who you sat next to in a class two years ago, and you know that he is working in the field/organization/industry that you’re interested in. You think, “Oh, he doesn’t remember me. I’m going to embarrass myself. He doesn’t want to talk with me. Forget it, I’m going to pretend like I didn’t see him.” Here’s the dirty little secret of Haverford College: He does remember who you are; and he does want to talk with you. Ask him how he got from that class you shared with him to where he is today. He will want to talk about himself. Did I mention that people like to talk about themselves?

  1. I love business cards. Why won’t anyone give me a business card?

You didn’t ask. Ask and you shall receive.

  1. Now I have so many business cards. What do I do with all of these things?

Save them ALL. Buy a rolodex if you have to. (Google what a “rolodex” is.) If someone hands you a business card he didn’t do it just because we order these things in bulk and we have hundreds of them cluttering our desk drawers and homes – though that’s true too. And you didn’t ask for a business card just to get the rush of excitement that someone is actually interested in you. You’ve made a connection; follow up on it. It may end up that you conclude, upon learning more information, that this person does not do *exactly* what you want to do. That’s fine. That person may know someone who does do something that you are interested in, and perhaps he or she will refer you to that person. Not only do people love to talk about themselves, they also love to talk about their friends and act as connectors for people. That’s how you build your network.

  1. Um. Now what?

Repeat. Research people. Reach out to them. Find out what they do and not just their title. Figure out if that is something you’re interested in. Ask them how they got there. Go to an event or a panel on a topic that interests you (and do not play on your phone the whole time – trust me, when you’re on the dais speaking on a panel, you can see who is not paying attention). Follow up. Repeat. Again and again.

As Rashidah Andrews ’02 recently told a group of current undergraduate students at a career development panel, “network” should not be used as a verb – it is a noun. Build your network from the ground up. If your ultimate goal is to find a job, know that many, if not most, jobs are landed because the applicant has a direct connection to someone at the organization. The days of rampant cold-hiring are coming to an end, if they haven’t already. Your name is your brand. Get out there and sell it.

Explore Careers Up Close and Personal with an Alum: Apply for an Externship

Posted on: October 21, 2014

By Kelly Cleary and Amy Feifer

Every day at the Center for Career and Professional Advising (CCPA) we talk with students who are trying to figure out what career they want to pursue after graduation. Figuring out which career paths would be a good fit for you requires research and self-reflection.  My simple advice for exploring careers is to read about careers that interest you, watch and talk with people who work in those fields (through a job shadow or informational interview), and try them out yourself through an internship, volunteer experience, or a job.

The CCPA’s Extern Program is a terrific experience that gives students a chance toexplore different career options by allowing a firsthand glimpse into a field of interest. Selected applicants are matched with one of Haverford or Bryn Mawr alumni the students listed as preferences in their application (due October 30).  By shadowing professionals in their workplace, you can begin to explore your interests and see what a typical day is like in a particular job. The advice and guidance you’ll receive from alumni in this shadowing experience will help you identify potential career options.

Extern Chris Gardner (HC '15) with Dr. Brandt Feuerstein (HC '87), General Surgeon, Eden Hill Surgical Group, Dover, DE
Extern Chris Gardner (HC ’15) with Dr. Brandt Feuerstein (HC ’87), General Surgeon, Eden Hill Surgical Group, Dover, DE

What is the difference between an Externship and an Internship?

An externship is basically a job shadow that might involve working on a short-term project. From two days to two weeks during Winter or Spring break, externs observe and talk with alumni sponsors and their colleagues. In most cases, you participate in the normal routines of the sponsors, following your hosts throughout their workday or working on special projects. Often, the externs spend time in several departments to gain insight into allied positions in the sponsor’s particular career.

Internships , on the other hand, are generally 8-12 week experiences, where student apply what they learned in the classroom to a work setting under the supervision of the employer. Visit the CCPA’s Internship page for advice and resources for finding internships.

 What do students have to say about their externships?

Conor Brennan-Burke (HC ’16) - Sponsor: Jonathan Copulsky HC ’76, Principal, Deloitte Consulting LLP, Chicago, IL

Before my Externship, I was considering a career in business, but I had no idea where or how. Now, I have a clear idea of exactly what I wanted to do, and some of the steps I can take to get there.  It was very helpful to meet individuals at all different stages of their careers, and hear how they came to Deloitte. Thank you CCPA! 

Isabella Muratore (HC ’16) gaining hands on experience at the Museum of Natural History

Isabella Muratore (HC ’16)  - Sponsor: Briana Pobiner  BMC ’97, Research Scientist and Museum Educator Smithsonian Institution, National Museum of Natural History, Washington, DC

I can’t express how fun, interesting, and informative this externship was for me. I had high hopes for the experience but I never expected I’d meet so many scientists doing insightful research relevant to my interests, get a behind the scenes look at the vast Smithsonian collection, and dissect a deer head! I can tell that Dr. Pobiner put enormous effort into organizing these opportunities for me and in selecting them according to my interests.

boal sponsor_rojas student
Extern Diane Rojas HC’14 with Sponsor: Jennifer Boal HC ’85, U.S. Magistrate Judge, US Courts, Boston, MA

Diane Rojas (HC ’14) - Sponsor: Jennifer Boal (HC ’85), U.S. Magistrate Judge, US  Courts, Boston, MA

The experience gave me great insight into the federal legal system, a field I hope to one day enter. Judge Boal and her staff were incredibly helpful in explaining areas as well as welcoming me into their everyday practices.

Chris Gardner (HC ’15) - Sponsor: Dr. Brandt Feuerstein HC ’87, General Surgeon, Eden Hill Surgical Group, Dover, DE

I had a really enjoyable time. I saw a lot of the behind the scenes of how hospitals work, and got to talk with different surgeons about their experiences. I learned a lot, and this experience helped me decide that I definitely want to do something involving surgery.

Alec De Vivo (HC ‘14) - Sponsor: Mark Scherzer HC 73, attorney/owner, Mark Scherzer Law Office, New York, NY

I learned a lot about health care policy in New York. I also met many people working in health care and got a good sense for the kind of work I would be doing and where to look if I wanted to pursue a job related to health care law or policy.

For more information about the program and to apply (deadline October 30, 2014) visit the CCPA’s Extern Program webpage or stop by the CCPA in Stokes 300.

Fords on Friday: Constantinos Vassiliou Coutifaris ’06

Posted on: October 17, 2014

The CCPA welcomes guest blogger Constantinos Vassiliou Coutifaris, Haverford College Class of 2006.  Constantinos and Professor Anne Preston came up with the idea of the Fords in Business Conference.  He is currently a partner at American Industrial Partners, and will be returning to campus for the Fords in Business Conference on November 1.  Thank you, Constantinos!

 Fords in Business Conference: The Road from Haverford to Business School

Haverford College graduates have made their mark on the world across a wide spectrum of fields.

In the sciences, Theodore Richards (Class of 1885) was the first American scientist to receive the Nobel Prize in Chemistry. In higher education, Fred Rodell (Class of 1926), famous for his critiques of the legal profession, was a Professor at Yale Law School for more than 40 years. In social impact, more than 138 Haverford alumni have served as Peace Corps volunteers in 64 countries. In politics, John Whitehead (Class of 1943) was deputy U.S. Secretary of State under President Reagan. In entertainment, Daniel Dae Kim (Class of 1990) was a regular cast member on TV series Lost. In journalism, Dave Barry (Class of 1969) is a Pulitzer Prize-winning author and columnist. In law, Robert MacCrate (Class of 1943) was the Vice Chairman of Sullivan & Cromwell LLP, widely considered one of the most prestigious law firms in the world.

And how about business?

As a testament to the critical thinking and multi-disciplinary learning that takes place at Haverford, there are also many Haverfordians who have achieved excellence in business. Our Haverford alumni community consists of numerous notable business leaders: the former Co-Chairman of Goldman Sachs, the former CEO of National Public Radio, the current Chairman and CEO of Cantor Fitzgerald, whose leadership after the 9/11 attacks has been inspirational, the former CEO of Time Inc., the current COO of Deutsche Bank, the current CEO of the MLB Network, to name a few. In addition to their Haverford heritage, many of these business leaders have another thing in common: they have received a Master of Business Administration (MBA) degree.

There are many Haverford alums who have decided to follow in those leaders’ footsteps by pursuing an MBA. And I bet they would all be willing to talk to Haverford students or alums to share knowledge and advice from their journeys.

If you want to learn more about how an MBA can help you achieve excellence, please join us at the Fords in Business Conference: The Road from Haverford to Business School on November 1st from 12 to 5:30 pm. A group of Haverford MBAs will be speaking about their experiences and how they are now leaving their own mark on the world.

Learn how an MBA can become your launching pad! We are looking forward to seeing you on November 1st.

Fords on Friday: 5 tips to make your next networking event successful

Posted on: October 10, 2014

Thank you to CCPA guest contributor and HC Alum Jennifer Lynne Robinson! Jennifer2

1. Plan ahead: Research the event beforehand. Make sure you find out about the event format. Will there be time for open networking? Will you be asked to give an “Elevator Pitch” or 30 second commercial? Will there be food? Is there a list of attendees available to look over prior to the event? Do you have directions to the event? What is the parking situation?

These are all important issues. You want to arrive for a networking with the right mindset to make a great first impression. It is tough to do that if you are flustered or unprepared. Leave yourself plenty of time to arrive. If there is open networking, make sure you don’t arrive late so you have the benefit of that open time before the formal program to meet a few folks. Prepare a pitch if one will be asked of you. Don’t go to an event starving. It may sound trivial but if you are hungry and possibly grumpy it will be hard to be your best self. Finally, if a list of attendees is available prior to the event , look it over and research attendees on LinkedIn. Target 3-5 people to meet at the event. This way you have focus when you enter the crowded room. It may even be a good idea to connect with a few attendees prior to the event and tell them you saw they were attending and you look forward to meeting/speaking with them at the event.

2. Introduce yourself to the host and tell them what you are looking for: Always approach the event host and introduce yourself-especially if it is your first time attending an event with the organization. Often times it is a thankless job so be sure to thank the host for all their efforts. Tell them about what you do and who you are looking to meet. The host will likely know most of the people in the room and may be able to quickly make some introductions to targeted people for you. If there is a specific person you know is attending the event but you do not know what they look like, the host is a great person to ask to point them out to you. Finally, the host may be able to talk to you about why they are involved in the organization and how it has helped them/their business so you can determine if it is the right group for you and your business networking goals.

3. Introduce yourself to three new people: It is tempting to go to an event and simply catch up with friends and colleagues but that is socializing not networking. Tell yourself you will have a conversation with at least three new people at the event. There is no need to work the room and meet 30 people in 60 minutes. It is also a bad idea to sit and check your email and disregard the people you could be meeting around you. Why even come to the event if you are not going to engage with new people? Telling yourself you will meet three new people is a realistic ad manageable goal. You won’t feel pressure to walk away from good conversations just to meet someone else. It is important to make an impact so that you can continue to build the relationship after the event. A few meaningful contacts are better than many superficial ones.

4. Ask good questions: Try not to revert to the standard, “Where do you work?” or “What do you do?” questions when starting up a conversation at an event. It is a much better idea to try to ask open ended questions that will encourage more sharing. Some examples are:

Tell me about a project you are working on right now.
Why did you decide to get into your line of work? What do you love about it?
It could even be as simple as: How has your day been?

These types of questions will allow more open and personal discussions that will help connect with new people and may have the additional benefit of revealing commonalities to speed up the connection process.

5. Follow up: Networking is about Follow-up and Follow-through. Less than 3% of those who attend networking events actually follow up. Try to block some time either directly after a networking event or within 2-3 days of an event to follow up with the people you met via email, phone or even a handwritten note. Set up at least one follow up meeting to get to know someone better. Most importantly, if you promised to do something for someone when you met them at the event (connect them with someone in your network, send them info on an organization, forward an article, invite them to an event etc.) make sure you follow through. Keeping your word shows credibility and strong character and always leaves a positive impression.

Jennifer Lynn Robinson is the CEO and Founder of “Purposeful Networking.” She works with individuals to maximize their relationships and sales through a comprehensive and personalized networking plan. She conducts workshops, training sessions and speaking engagements for workplaces, business associations, non-profits and various other groups.  Jennifer holds certifications in Event Planning, Non-Profit Management and Conflict Resolution. She received her Bachelor of Arts from Haverford College and her law degree from Villanova School of Law.  Jennifer is currently involved with numerous non-profit organizations. She sits on several boards including the executive alumni board of Haverford College and MusicWorks.  Jennifer serves as co-president for the Main Line Professional Development Group. She lives in Bala Cynwyd with her husband Walter and their three rescue dogs Buster, Braxton and Morgan.  Find Jennifer on Facebook at and Twitter at @AreYouNetworked. Her website is She is also a contributing author of The Happy Law Practice

The Road from Haverford to Business School—why you should attend the Fords in Business Conference on November 1

Posted on: October 8, 2014

Pratap Mukharji '81 Senior Partner, Atlanta Office, Bain & Co.

Pratap Mukharji ’81
Senior Partner, Atlanta Office Bain & Co.


The CCPA welcomes guest blogger Pratap Mukharji back to the
 community with his thoughts on why Haverford students should consider careers in business. He is a senior partner in the Atlanta office of Bain & Co., and will be returning to campus for the Fords in Business Conference on November 1. Thank you, Pratap!


When I went to Haverford, fellow students were either pre-med, pre-law, were interested in social work, teaching, etc. Very few people actually professed to be interested in a career in business. Yet, quietly and over time, many Fords have gone into the world of business and done very well. And, their success in the world of commerce has been good for business and Haverford. Haverford teaches and encourages a unique blend of critical thinking and multi-disciplinary learning which is rare. As a result, the students who graduate are better equipped than they may realize. The environment and the culture of Haverford also turns out people who are wired a bit more to making the world a better place, and so act differently than, say “The Wolf of Wall Street”.

I have a very selfish interest in seeing more Fords pursue careers in business. They will do very well. They will make a difference in where they work and where they live. And, I also hope they will give back, not just to Haverford, but also to their communities. I went to get a MBA not because I wanted to, but because i thought it might be the degree which would give me most flexibility. It did, and was valuable in helping me get to where I am today. And, it has allowed me to give back in ways I could never have imagined when I was in college.

Interested in learning more about careers in business and business school specifically? Then register for this event in November.

Fords in Business Conference: The Road from Haverford to Business School

November 1 from12:00–5:00 p.m. Haverford College, Sharpless Hall

Please register online by October 25.

This one-day event is for Haverford students and alumni who are interested in learning about and preparing for business school.

The day will include:

  • Lunch with keynote speaker, David Maue, Managing Director, Chief Administrative Officer, American Securities
  • Alumni panels and breakout sessions include: Alumni perspectives on the MBA Experience Recruiting for a first job in business after Haverford Social impact/social entrepreneurship
  • An MBA application workshop with Dr. Paula Steisel Goldfarb, Assistant Dean, Academic Affairs, Graduate Financial Aid, and Admissions, New York University, Stern School of Business
  • A networking reception

Attendance is free, but registration is required. Register today by completing the online registration form,

Please email Kelly Cleary or call the CCPA (610-896-1181) for more information

The program is sponsored by the Center for Career & Professional Advising (CCPA), the Economics department, and a dedicated group of alumni.


My Experience at the DDC Clinic For Special Needs Children

Posted on: October 6, 2014

The CCPA welcomes Haverford student
Abi Moeller as our guest blogger today!
Thank you, Abi!

This summer I worked at the DDC Clinic for Special Needs Children located in Middlefield, Ohio. The Jaharis Fellowship gave me the opportunity to take on this unpaid internship that I wouldn’t have been able to do otherwise.

The idea for the DDC Clinic started in the late 1990’s when local Amish families were frustrated with the lack of explanations and treatment options for their special needs children. This drive for answers and better care led to the new DDC Clinic opening in October of 2009. It is a brand new facility that incorporated a state of the art lab, primary care facilities, classrooms, conference rooms, and the possibility to expand into a dental clinic.

The DDC Clinic’s mission is to fund and sustain a family-centered specialized care clinic that provides for people with special needs. They are a non-profit independent clinic that is committed to provide treatment at a dramatically reduced cost in order to meet the financial constraints of many of their patients. With the lab, there is also an emphasis on research and furthering our understanding of some of these incredibly rare and debilitating genetic disorders. The third component is to continue education about these rare genetic disorders.

I was mostly involved in the third aspect of their mission this summer. My main project was to help the DDC Clinic organize for their Continuing Medical Education Conference (CME) titled “Translational Genomic Medicine in Plane Populations” co-hosted by Case Western Reserve University School of Medicine and the Children’s Hospital of Pittsburgh. The objectives of the conference were to discuss molecular genetic methods for diagnosing rare genetic disorders, describe the function and value of community medical clinics, explain the basic science behind some of these rare genetic disorders and the current state of translational research.

This two-day conference that included 22 speakers was a huge undertaking for a Clinic with only 7 staff members. I helped with multiple little details to make sure event planning ran smoothly and on time. For instance, I coordinated transportation and bus services for the event, researched the contact information for the directors of CME at hospitals in Ohio and Pennsylvania, edited invitations and the schedule for the conference, addressed and mailed hundreds of invitations, maintained a database of those attending, and plenty of other logistics about the event.

While I spent a lot of time working on the CME Conference, I also was able to shadow Dr. Heng Wang, the only doctor at the DDC Clinic, and observe his visits with his patients. I was able to see the differences in primary care for special needs children and also the differences in treating plain populations. For instance, some Amish do not have a telephone so to notify some of them about an update we had to mail letters or drop by their house after work and let them know in person. Also, because the Amish do no drive, there was special attention to how the healthcare providers could reduce the hassle of them having to visit, sometimes even doing home visits. The little details of working with the Amish were enlightening to me because they showed how important it was for primary care physicians to be culturally aware of the populations they treat and always willing to learn more about a community that can be very different from mainstream America.

I also shadowed Valerie Sency who is the nurse. One memorable moment was immunization day where the clinic provides immunizations to the children in the community. It’s a delicate conversation between Valerie and the Amish mother’s about which vaccinations they want for their children and which ones they would prefer not to have. Every mother is different and has different wishes. The internship was incredibly rewarding because I got to experience how important it is to have these sometimes difficult and sensitive conversations with parents about a topic that is so highly stigmatizing.

I also assisted the administrative assistant Erica Stewart. I did filing and organizing of medical records. They were underway to switch to a digital medical records system so that process was a little crazy and having an extra set of hands was helpful. She also taught me a lot about the medical billing process, which I previously had very little understanding about. She taught me the differences she experienced with how medical billing worked for certain populations like the Amish who wish to not be on government medical insurance. However, with special needs children, due to the overwhelming cost of some of the care, these families have no choice but to put their children on Medicare. So we discussed how this is a very difficult decision for families because it goes against their beliefs. Also, with the new medical insurance laws these families will no longer be able to have just one family member, the kid with special needs, on Medicare and exempt the rest of the family. Families will now have to be all on Medicare if one of them is, which is hugely distressing and upsetting to Amish families who strongly believe that they do not want to be on Medicare, but have to be in order to provide for their special needs children. These were the sorts of conversations Erica and I would have while we were working and it allowed me to learn a lot about a side of medicine that I had previously not had much experience dealing with.

I also got to see the state of the art lab and talk to the director of the lab and learn more about the research they were doing. I got a handful of papers published by Dr. Weng and got to see some of the labs work. It was fascinating to see how such cutting edge science and developments were taking place in a little lab in the middle of farmland in Ohio.

I learned a lot from working with the DDC Clinic and interacting with all the different staff members and patients. It was a valuable experience and I only furthered my interest in primary care. I had previous interest in eventually practicing medicine in rural areas and after working in Middlefield all summer it strengthened my goal to want to work in these underserved rural areas. I found the work incredibly rewarding and I truly loved working with a primarily Amish population.



A Pre-Medical Student’s Exploration of England’s National Health Service

Posted on: September 30, 2014

By Moriah Pollock-Hawthorne HC ’15

Immediately after completing the last exam of my junior year at Haverford, I boarded a plane to London to begin a six-week internship in which I would learn as much as I could about the Moriah 1inner workings of England’s National Health Service, a single-payer healthcare system. Dr. Amanda Adler—my generous host and the diabetes specialist who would act as my teacher and mentor during my internship—met me at Heathrow International Airport and drove me to her thatched cottage in Fowlmere, a sleepy little town in the English countryside about ten miles away from the hospital in Cambridge.

As I got settled in, Dr. Adler and I laid out the schedule for the next six weeks that would fulfill the goal of my internship, which was to experience the National Health Service [NHS] in action, from the creation of health care guidelines and policies to their application in clinical settings.

For four weeks, I directly experienced British health care by shadowing and assisting Dr. Adler and her colleagues as they ran various clinics at the Institute of Metabolic Science at Cambridge University’s Addenbrooke’s Hospital. During this time I observed a diabetes clinic (where new and regular patients with all types of diabetes Moriah 2came in for routine check-ups), an endocrine clinic, a diabetic foot clinic (where I first saw gangrene, NOT a pleasant sight), a cystic fibrosis and diabetes joint-clinic, a diabetes and renal failure joint-clinic, a pre-conception counseling clinic, and a diabetes clinic for pregnant women.

The time I spent in clinic really inspired me and made me certain that I want to work in clinical medicine when I become a doctor. It was amazing to meet all of the British patients and hearing their stories about their diabetes and how different treatments affect their daily lives. For example, one patient was greatly relieved when the doctor agreed to lower her dose of insulin because until that point she had become so terrified of having a “hypo”—a dangerously low blood sugar—that she could not even leave her house. By listening to patients I learned much more about diabetes than I could have ever learned from a textbook and from their stories I learned a lot about British culture and daily life in England.

During the four weeks I spent in clinic, I got hands-on clinical experience crucial to the preparation for my future career in medicine, learned a great deal about diabetes, and got to experience first-hand how the NHS works in the clinical setting.

For the other two weeks of my internship, I moved down to Dr. Adler’s flat in London. The goal of this part of my internship was to learn about the processes in which the health policies and guidelines used by doctors in the NHS are created. To do this, I observed a technology appraisal meeting chaired by Dr. Adler, who works part time with the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE), a non-profit organization that creates guidelines and policies for the NHS to ensure affordability and standards of care for medicine. To further explore the field of health policy, I also worked for two weeks as an intern for NICE International in London, a small semi-autonomous branch of NICE that applies the experiences of NICE and the NHS to help developing countries in the formation of principles, priorities, and guidelines as these countries begin to create or expand their own healthcare systems.

During my time at NICE International, I commuted to work on the Tube like a true Londoner and used my PowerPoint and Excel skills to assist the team as they prepared a presentation for a big meeting, which I had the privilege to attend. During this meeting I (representing Haverford) sat around a table surrounded by incredible people who work for exceptional organizations—such as Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, World Bank, Rockefeller Center, Center for Global Development, and the UK’s Department of International Development. I listened intently as they discussemoriah 3d the best way to aid low and middle income countries in the establishment of priorities and guidelines for good quality health care and debated which country (or countries) they should choose for the trial run of their new program—the International Decision Support Initiative. I also got to attend the launch party for this initiative at the House of Lords in British Parliament!

As my internship came to an end and I prepared to return to the United States, I realized just how much I had learned about diabetes treatment, clinical medicine, and how the NHS operates and serves as an inspiring example for developing countries around the world. One of the experiences that struck me most during my time in England was the reaction of utter surprise and shock I received from the English people when I said to them, “You are so lucky to have the NHS! In the United States, many people experience constant worry and stress that they will not be able to afford the medical attention they need to maintain their health.” To them, having a healthcare system that covers everyone seemed like a given. Overall, my internship made me realize how much the American people would benefit if the US healthcare system was restructured using the NHS as a model. Personally, as a future doctor I know that I want to work within a healthcare system that allows me to help all people in need of medical attention, regardless of how much money they can pay.

Fords on Friday: Alex Turner ’93

Posted on: September 26, 2014

The CCPA welcomes Alex Turner, HC ’93 as our
Fords on Friday guest blogger today. Thank you, Alex! 

Get to Know Yourself 

By way of introduction, I am a Ford alum, class of 1993, who has a3bd55d3 private criminal defense practice in the city of Philadelphia. I work for myself, doing very meaningful things for people in desperate need, often times by arguing in front of a jury just like a lawyer on TV. It is absolutely as awesome as it sounds. I love my job. Which makes me somewhat of an anomaly among lawyers. Many of my colleagues do not exactly love their jobs.

So how did I get here? How did I become an outlier, a very-satisfied rounding error in the statistics of legal employment? The true answer is, I have no idea. I can’t honestly say that it was the direct, foreseen result of any concerted effort on my part. Which puts me at a loss when it comes to giving career advice. I couldn’t possibly tell you what steps you need to take to find a satisfying career. But I know what it feels like to find one. And I know that, had I been in better touch with my feelings all along, I would have gotten here a lot faster.

I raise the issue of feelings with some trepidation — most of us aren’t comfortable talking about them, especially in a professional context. But I think feelings are the key to professional satisfaction. If you want to figure out what you are meant to do, you need to get to know yourself better, and that means figuring out how you feel about things.

I never had much interest in dwelling on my feelings. I was very much invested in the idea that my intellect was in charge. Feelings were something that I ignored in order to ensure that my decision making was free of irrationality, and intellect was the tool I used to keep feelings in check. But as it turns out, I had this scheme completely backwards. The feelings that I had left unexamined were actually running my life. The intellect that I had trusted with my big decisions wasn’t working against my feelings, it was working for my feelings: all of that mental horsepower was being used to intellectually justify the things that my feelings wanted. The things that I didn’t even know my feelings wanted.

As a result, many of my rational-sounding career decisions weren’t actually that rational. Some were a bit compulsive. I wasn’t actually making choices based on what I was good at or what I enjoyed doing. Rather, I was relying on a subconscious presumption that some new option might finally dispell the vauge sense of dissatisfaction that pervaded my life. But the dissatisfaction remained no matter what choices I made. The dissatisfaction wasn’t a result of any deficiency in status or achievement or financial security. It had nothing to do with anything outside my own head. It was caused by the feelings I was trying to ignore.

Certainly, a better approach would have been to get to know myself — and my feelings — better. But self knowledge is no simple task. Achieving a state of mindful, emotional presence in our day-to-day lives is, for many of us, an elusive life-long goal. It takes time. It takes effort. It’s a process, and each person’s process looks different. I suppose my point — and by now its high time I had one — is that self knowledge has some serious collateral benefits besides the emotional and spiritual well being with which it’s most often associated. For one, it helps immensely with career development.

Yes, knowing yourself well means you’re able to discern when a bad feeling is causing the kind of discomfort that might lead to a rash decision and a poor career fit. But the flip side of this self-knowledge coin is the benefit of recognizing what it feels like when things are right. Knowing when you’re in the right place for the right reasons is just as valuable as knowing when your in the wrong place for the wrong reasons.

Here’s the good news: being a Ford helps. The Haverford community encourages us to find our own personal truth and express it courageously. It challeges us to value our principles over our performance. It nurtures a peace of mind that opens us to possibility. That’s a great environment in which to start getting to know yourself better.

And don’t feel rushed. You have plenty of time.

Alex Turner is a graduate of Haverford College (class of 1993) and the University of Pennsylvania Law School. He began his legal career representing indigent clients accused of crimes, first at the Miami-Dade Public Defender, and subsequently at the Defender Association of Philadelphia. Mr. Turner worked as an white collar and commercial litigation associate at the law firm Ballard Spahr LLP for several years before opening his own practice in Philadelphia. He focuses primarily on criminal defense and commercial litigation.

Harnessing the Market for Social and Environmental Good: A Speaker Series on Impact Investing

Posted on: September 22, 2014

Haverford College is proud to introduce our Impact Investing series with professor Shannon Mudd, Ph.D., Visiting Assistant Professor and Director of Impact Investing Social Entrepreneurship:
Throughout their development, whether in early or later stages, II Speaker Series Poster-page-001societies face significant challenges in ensuring the welfare of all their citizens. Problems that need to be addressed arise from poverty, health issues, safety concerns, environmental degradation, limited access to services, a lack of freedom to speak or work, unequal opportunities to develop one’s capabilities, etc.

Governments and non-profit organizations have long been relied upon to effect change and address these problems. But both are limited in what they can do. Increasingly, innovative responses are being developed by social and environmental entrepreneurs. In this third approach entrepreneurs use business concepts to develop and deliver products and services in sustainable ways by working through markets. Examples abound, from the provision of pay-as-you-go solar lighting using mobile phone payments (M-Kopa-Kenya), to low cost eye treatment for the poor (Aravind-India), to energy-efficient green laundry services delivered by bicycle (Wash Cycle Laundry-Philadelphia). While philanthropy and governments may play a role, the focus of the entrepreneur is to create a viable business that can cover its costs while generating a positive benefit.

Start-up businesses almost always have difficulty getting the financing they need for their operations and growth. When a business is not only new, but non-standard and seeking to provide a positive social benefit as well as generate the cash to pay back investors, the financial system is even more skeptical.

This speaker series brings to campus practitioners and thought leaders to talk about the crucial interactions between the financial system and social innovation. Will the financial system allow a social enterprise to maintain its mission? A new segment of investors is emerging that is focused on “doing well by doing good,” i.e., using their financial capital to create positive social and environmental change. Known as Impact Investing, this segment of the financial sector includes individuals, foundations, and investment funds which support social entrepreneurs without asking them to give up their soul.

Its early in the sector’s development. Will it survive? Who are the players? Are the necessary support services, legal rulings and other institutions in place to preserve their gains and support their growth? Is there enough funding to meet the demand? Are their enough good prospects to keep investors interested? What challenges do entrepreneurs, funders and the eco-system as a whole face? Come and hear and determine how you and your communities might be affected – or even inspired.


Fords on Friday: Evan LeFlore ’06

Posted on: September 19, 2014

The CCPA welcomes guest blogger Evan LeFore’06 back to the
with his take on the importance of beginning to think about
your career now. Evan is a graduate of the Stanford Graduate School of Business and Princeton’s Woodrow Wilson School. He is currently a consultant at Promontory Financial Group. Thank you, Evan!

Welcome (back) to Haverford! If you are anything like I was as a Haverford student, the start of each new school year brought a twinge of excitement and angst with all the LeFlore Bio Picquestions I had to answer:

  • What classes am I going to take?
  • What is my living situation going to be like?
  • How have my friends changed since last June?
  • How have I changed since then?
  • What can I do to make this year even more fun than last year?
  • And, for you seniors: What in the world am I going to write my thesis about?

But one question that is left off of this list far too often is:

  • What am I going to do next summer?

Even though the previous summer is only a few days gone, it is never too early to answer this question. And, trust me, answering this question now is important—especially since the school year goes by fast. Between classes, papers, problem sets, Founders dances, nights in Lunt Basement or the Coop, study sessions, etc., your days will quickly turn to night and you’ll wake up and it’s Pinwheel Day with the yearend approaching fast. (A side note: Pinwheel Day is still one of my favorite days of the year.)

Year after year, too many Haverford students begin the job-search process towards the end of their year, with many facing the arduous task of finding their summer/post-graduation job after many of the job deadlines have long since passed. The goal of this blog post, therefore, is to illuminate the tactics that you as a student can take to avoid this situation.


In a nutshell, the point of this post is to encourage you to begin thinking about your career now.

There are three main reasons for beginning this thought process so early in the year. First, many employers begin their hiring process for both summer interns and full-time hires before you even have your first midterm exam. According to the Center for Career and Professional Advising’s (CCPA) website (, seniors looking for full-time work have 30 jobs openings currently available with deadlines on or before September 30th of this year. And for internship seekers, some organizations (including Federal Government agencies) have deadlines as early as November.

While not all job and internship applications have such early deadlines, it is important to know when they are so you can begin planning your application process with those deadlines in mind.

Second, the job application process is a long and complicated one. To get a job, many of you will have to research companies; write resumes and cover letters; submit applications; and do informational, phone, and in-person interviews. Doing each of these well takes time and practice. And, as someone who spent many years recruiting candidates coming straight out of undergrad, I can tell you that a company can tell who prepared for the job application process—both by the quality of their written work as well as by their answers to interview questions.

Informational interviews with alumni or people in your network of family or friends are great ways to learn more about the types of jobs out there and their fit for your skills and interests. Take advantage of these conversations to learn more about a job—they will save you a lot of time by helping you learn what types of jobs you do (and do not) want to pursue.

And finally, the career search process starts the minute you step on to campus. As a Haverford student, you have a wealth of information from which to help devise your post-college career plans. Such resources include, but are not limited to, summer internships, the CCPA, and alumni (who, believe me, are waiting in the wings to help you find your career path). The earlier you start utilizing these resources, the more likely it is that you will graduate with a job that puts you on your path to a promising career.


If you have made it this far, you may be saying to yourself “But I’m planning on going straight to graduate school, so what does any of this have to do with me?”

The answer is, not surprisingly, that you too should start thinking early about the graduate school application process. Should you apply to graduate school, you will most likely need to take an entrance exam as well as complete schools applications during your senior year. The earlier you plan to dedicate time for this outside of your classwork the less painful it will be for you. And for many graduate programs, including MBA and public policy degrees, having at least two years of work experience is deemed preferable; thus, if you thinking of pursuing such a graduate degree it is also important follow this post’s job-related advice in order to help you secure a post-graduate job.


Talk is fine and well when it comes to planning your career exploration, but below I give you an outline of some steps you can take over the next few months that help make your next summer an enjoyable one:


  • Meet with a CCPA representative to talk through your potential career path
  • Start/polish your resume
  • Research the CCPA website to see what sorts of jobs/internships are already available
  • Apply to jobs with September deadlines
  • Talk to your peers and upperclassmen/women about their internship experience
  • REACH OUT TO ALUMNI for informational interviews


  • Begin drafting cover letters for jobs with upcoming deadlines
  • Apply to jobs with October deadlines
  • REACH OUT TO ALUMNI who work for the firms you’re interested in and/or have interviews with in the coming weeks
  • Study for and take any grad-school-related tests


  • Apply to jobs with November deadlines
  • Refine your resume and cover letters
  • Start doing mock interviews with the CCPA and/or your friends
  • REACH OUT TO ALUMNI (notice a theme?)


  • Focus on finishing the semester up strong, but make sure to keep an eye out for any looming application deadlines
  • And on your winter break, REACH OUT TO ALUMNI—particularly those who live in your hometown

While the above lessons will not guarantee that you’ll enter the spring semester with the knowledge what you’ll be doing next summer, they will greatly increase your odds of getting that internship or full-time job that will launch your career in the right direction.

Evan LeFlore ’06 is currently a consultant at
Promontory Financial Group. Evan is also a
graduate of the Stanford Graduate School of Business
and Princeton’s Woodrow Wilson School.
He can be reached at Evan (dot) LeFlore (at) GMAIL (dot) com.