Professionals in Residence

Tufts alumni pursue fascinating careers in a variety of industries. Every fall and spring, the Career Center brings talented alumni volunteers back to campus to share their career experiences and advice with students of all class years and majors. Through both 1-on-1 appointments and an interactive Lunch & Learn, these alumni provide insider info about jobs, employers, career paths, and more.


Spring 2019 Professionals in Residence

Civil Engineering and Management -- Tuesday, February 19

Cathy Leslie, Executive Director of Engineers Without Borders USA

Join us to learn more about the career of someone who has successfully combined civil engineering, management, and a desire to build a better world. Ms. Leslie will be availabe to share advice and tell stories. To sign up for the Lunch & Learn and 1-on-1 appointments, visit the link below.

Register for Feb. 19 Professional in Residence Events

Spectroscopy, Entrepreneurship and Invention -- Friday, February 22

Dylan Wilks, EG15, Engineering Management, CTO of Orange Phototonics

Join us to learn more about the career of someone who has had a varied and interesting work life.  He has spoken at Tufts in the past to much acclaim. Spectroscopy, entrepreneurship and invention are a family legacy for Mr. Wilks. His grandfather is the “Father of Infrared Technology” and one of the industry founders in the 1940’s. Mr. Wilks has led optics projects serving NASA’s Mars Rover as well as air and ground based imaging systems, specialized lighting (lasers, fiber illuminators, etc) and within the infrared spectroscopy disciplines. He has also worked extensively within the petroleum industry and chaired an ASTM method. Mr. Wilks founded Orange Photonics in the spring of 2015 after earning his Masters in Engineering Management from Tufts. To sign up for the Lunch & Learn and 1-on-1 appointments, visit the link below.

Register for Feb. 22 Professional in Residence Events

Publishing -- Wednesday, February 27

Melanie Cordova, Associate Editor at Candlewick Press

Ms. Cordova works for one of the fastest-growing children’s book publishers in the United States. As an editor, Melanie works on books ranging from board books to picture books to novels. Some of the books Melanie has worked on include the New York Times bestselling series The Princess in Black by Shannon and Dean Hale, the Pura Belpré award-winning book Juana and Lucas by Juana Medina, and the Judy Moody and Friends series by Megan McDonald. Melanie also works on Candlewick’s growing list of Spanish and dual-language titles. Melanie graduated from Emerson College in 2010 with a B.A. in Writing, Literature, and Publishing and a double minor in Journalism and Sociology. Currently, Melanie is a mentor with the Representation Matters Mentorship Program, which connects people of color who are interested in publishing with publishing professionals who can help their mentees learn about, and get a foothold in, the industry. To view Ms. Cordova's complete bio and to sign up for the Lunch & Learn and 1-on-1 appointments, visit the link below.

Register for Feb. 27 Professional in Residence Events

Corporate Responsibility -- Wednesday, April 10

Melissa Small, A02, English, Global Manager of Corporate Responsibility at MilliporeSigma (the life science wing of Merck)

Ms. Small leads the development and implementation of employee engagement and community engagement strategy, programs and nonprofit partnerships, as well as communications to raise awareness about the company’s CR initiatives. Most recently, she launched the company’s first-ever global volunteer program focused on science education, with more than 7,000 employee participants in 36 countries engaging more than 200,000 students. She is also responsible for leading shared value programs in Africa, including a private public partnership in Ghana focused on water quality and testing. Ms. Small has extensive experience working on corporate responsibility consulting projects with a variety of companies and organizations, including State Street, Dunkin’ Brands, among others. She holds a B.A. in English from Tufts and an M.B.A. from Boston University (BU) Questrom School of Business. To view Ms. Small's complete bio and to sign up for the Lunch & Learn and 1-on-1 appointments, visit the link below.

Register for Apr. 10 Professional in Residence Events

Fall 2018 Professionals in Residence

Journalism & Strategic Communication -- Friday, October 26

Gabrielle Levy, A10, English and Music, Senior Communications Associate at Climate Nexus

Ms. Levy has covered politics and policy in Washington, D.C., for more than seven years, most recently for U.S. News and World Report. In 2011, she earned a master’s degree from Northwestern University’s Medill School of Journalism, for which she spent five months living and reporting on government corruption, human rights and natural disasters for the Cambodia Daily in Phnom Penh. In September, she joined Climate Nexus, a project of Rockefeller Philanthropy Advisors, where her role involves strategic communications urging action on climate change. She is excited to meet with students and assist them in learning about careers in journalism and strategic communication. To view Ms. Levy's complete bio and to sign up for the Lunch & Learn and 1-on-1 appointments, visit the link below.

Register for Oct. 26 Professional in Residence Events

Podcasting, Broadcasting and Producing Media -- Wednesday, November 14

Jamie Bologna, A08, Political Science and Spanish, Italian Studies minor, Producer and Director of Radio Boston at WBUR

As Producer and Director of "Radio Boston" on WBUR, Mr. Bologna directs the live show, occasionally fills in as host, produces daily segments, and reports live on-air. During the trial of Boston Marathon bomber Dzhokhar Tsarnaev in 2015, he produced the WBUR/Boston Globe "Finish Line" podcast, which won a PRNDI (Public Radio News Directors Incorporated) award for best podcast of the year. In January 2015, Mr. Bologna completed a master's degree in journalism at Boston University's College of Communication.  Prior to his time at WBUR, he served as the Hudson Institute's Managing Editor, overseeing the Institute's social media presence, public relations and outreach, and editing and publications. He has also worked in publications editing and web at the American Enterprise Institute for Public Policy Research (AEI). To view Mr. Bologna's complete bio and to sign up for the Lunch & Learn and 1-on-1 appointments, visit the link below.

Register for Nov. 14 Professional in Residence Events

Frequently Asked Questions

What can I expect from a 1-on-1 appointment with the Professional in Residence?

This is a great opportunity to learn from someone who has first-hand knowledge of a career path that interests you. Your meeting is known as an informational interview, and you can consult our website for more about the process, including sample questions to ask the alumnus/a. You'll want to make the most of your 20-minute appointment; it can go quickly! Come prepared with 5-7 questions to ask, and prioritize them so you get to your most important questions first.

What can I expect from a Lunch & Learn with the Professional in Residence?

The lunch discussion is another nice way to interact with a visiting Professional. You'll benefit from opportunities to both ask questions and learn from questions asked by peers. Food provided by the Tufts Career Center.

Do I need to bring a resume to my 1-on-1 appointment with the Professional in Residence?

The Career Center provides copies of student resumes to Professionals in Residence prior to the 1-on-1 appointments so they can get a sense of the students with whom they are meeting.

As far as bringing your document to your 1-on-1, it depends! Perhaps you'd like to ask the Professional in Residence for a quick opinion about one of the bullet points on your resume or the order of your section headings. In these cases, you may want to bring your document with you. The individual appointment isn't intended to be a resume critique, however, so be sure to keep any resume questions brief and specific. In addition, please remember that the majority of our alumni volunteers are not hiring for particular jobs, so they won't be collecting resumes the way career fair representatives would.

How should I follow up after my appointment? May I stay in touch with a Professional in Residence?

Following up with a thank you email is a wonderful way to express gratitude for the person's time and advice. We offer sample notes on our website if you're looking for a point of reference.

As with any networking scenario, options for keeping in touch are often part of the conversation. With a Professional in Residence, you might say, "May I have your business card? If it's okay with you, I'd like to follow up in a month or so to let you know how my job/internship search is progressing." OR perhaps "This conversation has been really helpful, and I'd like to stay in touch. May I send a LinkedIn connection request?" Important note: If you express an interest in keeping in touch with the person, make sure you actually do keep in touch in whichever way you specify.

What should I do if I need to cancel my individual appointment or participation in the lunch discussion?

When you reserve a time to speak with the Professional in Residence or sign up for the lunch discussion, it means we're holding that spot for you. While we understand that true emergencies do occur, please let us know as soon as possible (ideally before the day of the event) if you need to cancel your appointment. This makes it more likely that another student will be able to take your place. In addition, the decision to no-show for an appointment may prohibit you from signing up for future Professional in Residence programs.

Past Professionals in Residence

We're grateful to the following alumni who represent a wide range of class years, majors, and career fields:

  • Erin Allweiss, A05, International Relations and Environmental Studies -- Strategic Communication, Public Policy and Media Relations Career Paths
  • Jason Bauman, Esq., A05, Quantitative Economics and International Relations -- Law, Economics, Health Care Policy, and Conflict Resolution Career Paths
  • Sharon Berstein, J96, English -- Marketing, Analytics and Entrepreneurship Career Paths
  • Moises Cohen, A11, International Relations -- Entrepreneurship and Community Development Career Paths
  • Amy Cotter, J95, Environmental Studies and Political Science -- Urban/Regional Planning, Sustainability, and Environmental Advocacy Career Paths
  • Dana DiNino, PhD, J96, Biology -- Biology, Biotechnology and Pharmaceutical Career Paths
  • Gillian Galen, PsyD, J01, Child Development, Community Health, Spanish -- Clinical Psychology and Behavioral Therapy Career Paths
  • Rachel Gutter, A03, English -- Health and Sustainability in the Built Environment Career Paths
  • Anestis Kalaitzidis, A93, History -- Government Communication, Public Relations & Legislative Affairs Career Paths
  • Johanna Neumann, J01, Environmental Studies and Biology -- Environmental Advocacy, Policy, and Community Organization Career Paths
  • Josh Rabinowitz, A86, Music and Political Science -- Music Careers in Advertising and Broadcasting
  • Rita Reznikova, A08, International Relations -- Market Research, Marketing and Global Consumer Markets Career Paths
  • Margot Schwartz, A06, Psychology and Community Health -- Community and Public Health Career Paths
  • Sarang Sekhavat, Esq., A98, History and Anthropology -- Immigrant and Refugee Advocacy, Immigration Law and Policy Career Paths
  • Angelina Zhou, A13, International Literary and Visual Studies -- Innovation Consulting and Design Career Paths