Annie Brown (Women's Studies/History): Virginia League for Planned Parenthood Intern/Volunteer and HIV/AIDS journalist for Edge Boston
These days I work as a development intern at the Virginia League for Planned Parenthood (VLPP) in Richmond, VA. My duties as intern include developing online social media for Planned Parenthood, learning about the complicated science of fundraising, and coordinating several sexuality workshops taught by W&M Professor Juliana Mills. Thursday and Friday mornings I volunteer in the abortion recovery room in order to make life a little easier for the hardworking nurses of the VLPP. The work is both challenging and rewarding. I have already learned so much about the hard work required to provide and protect health services for women in Virginia.
I also write articles on HIV/AIDS and LGBTQ rights for a gay men's web magazine, Edge Boston and blog for Truthseekers, based in Pune, India . I occasionally work as a freelance mural artist for local businesses. Additionally, I give tours at the White House of the Confederacy, where I focus on African American and women's experiences during the Civil War. These jobs pay the bills, and give me the opportunity to write, draw and speak about the lives of marginalized Americans.
In my free time, I bike around the city, read graphic novels and pursue interests I developed at William and Mary, such as independent publishing. On October 16th, I will have a table at the Richmond Zine Fest, held at the Gay Community Center of Richmond. I would love for students, faculty and staff to come, check out the festival and say hey!
Karyn Bruggeman (Women's Studies/Government): Research Analyst, The Atlas Project
Upon graduating in 2010 I moved to Sacramento, California, where I spent seven months as a Canvass Director for Grassroots Campaigns, a progressive organization that partners with organizations and campaigns nationwide to help build out their field organizing and grassroots fundraising efforts. In early 2011 I headed onward to San Francisco where I served as a Regional Field Organizer with Obama for America and helped manage their summer organizer program throughout the Bay Area. While there I also had the invaluable opportunity of volunteering with an amazing non-profit, Women's Initiative for Self-Employment, assisting with the planning and organization of fundraisers, client programs, and events. Women's Initiative helps provide low-income women with the training and opportunities they need to start and grow their own small businesses.
After spending a year experimenting with living on the west coast I decided to return to Washington, D.C., reunite with friends and family, and intern in the New Media department at EMILY's List, a political organization dedicated to helping elect pro-choice, Democratic women to office, before beginning work as a Research Analyst at The Atlas Project, which is where I am currently. The Atlas Project is a Democratic research firm located in D.C. that helps progressives make better informed, strategic decisions by providing campaigns, candidates, and organizations with historical elections data and real time updates on campaign and election activity.
If the past two years have been any indication- I can't predict what the future holds, but I know I'm looking forward to doing my part to advance progressive causes, candidates, and ideas, and especially hope to discover new opportunities to help advance women into leadership roles at all levels of society, because I know it will truly make the world a better place. (2012)
Kelly Danner (Women's Studies/minor in Art and Art History): Project Manager for Epic Systems, Madison, WI
After my third summer of sunshine and youth at a summer camp in western North Carolina, where I taught horseback riding, I am now settled in Madison, Wisconsin working as a Project Manager for Epic Systems. After much thought and a nerve-wracking job search, I took the advice of a mentor and took a job that would provide me with the skills I need in order to be able to do what I want. At Epic, I work with healthcare organizations around the country in implementing the software and then training the staff in its use. Ultimately, my job improves patient care and reduces costs in healthcare. For me, it means that I get to travel often, save for graduate school, and live in a beautiful and progressive city.
I'm currently balancing this job with studying for the GMAT, the exam for graduate business schools. The GMAT is the next step towards enrolling in the joint degree program at Brandeis. This program would give me both an MBA and a Master's degree in Sustainable Development. I'm excited to reach this goal of mine, and I know that it will make me the most effective member of the development community that I can be.
For the past year and a half, I have been the Executive Assistant and Legislative Liaison at Arts Midwest, a Minneapolis-based regional arts organization that serves audiences, arts organizations, and artists throughout the nine states of Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Michigan, Minnesota, North Dakota, Ohio, South Dakota, Wisconsin. I work closely with our internal leadership team, Board of Directors, and nine state arts agency directors. It has been an amazing education in working with federal and state agencies, and I am grateful to have had this opportunity.
In the fall, I will begin graduate studies at the University of Pennsylvania's School of Social Policy and Practice, where I will be pursuing a Master of Science in Social Policy. I plan to return to my Women's Studies roots by focusing my work on women's health policy and advocacy. The School of Social Policy and Practice was definitely a hidden gem in my graduate school search, and I encourage fellow Women's Studies students and alums who are interested in social policy, social work, and nonprofit management to look into their programs. (2012)
Kaley Horton (Women's Studies/Government):
After graduating in 2010, I returned to Texas for a third and final summer as an 8th grade English teacher for the Breakthrough Collaborative, a rigorous college preparatory program for high performing middle school students from low performing schools that provides one-on-one support throughout the school year and an intensive summer school program. After finishing up at the Breakthrough Collaborative I spent a year as an AmeriCorps VISTA for the Arlington Public Libraries. In my role as a VISTA, I coordinated (and often created) educational programming for Arlington's public libraries targeting elementary students from vulnerable neighborhoods. Being able to serve as a VISTA was a meaningful experience that sharpened my skill set; I was able to work on volunteer recruitment and management, grant writing and compliance, multi-site project management and communication. I finished my term in August 2011 and moved to Austin -- a mecca for live music, tex-mex and all things weird. Besides the great food, I moved to accept a position with United Way for Greater Austin's early childhood initiative, Success By 6. Success By 6's mission is for all children in Central Texas to enter school happy, healthy and ready to succeed by increasing quality standards in child care centers, funding and coordinating evidence-based parent education programs and providing mental health and behavioral services for child care centers and programs, and advocating on the local and state levels. I couldn't be prouder to advocate on behalf of our youngest Texans. My main responsibility is managing SB6's first signature project, Play To Learn, a neighborhood based parent education series for low-income families with 2 or 3 year olds that promotes school readiness by teaching at-home strategies and building a support network for vulnerable families, mostly moms. Play To Learn works primarily with single moms and addresses issues like maternal health and educates participants on the stages of child development -- physically, emotionally and cognitively. My background in Women's Studies helps immensely in identifying and understanding the barriers our families face. I'm also getting my Master's in Political Science with a concentration in Legal Studies at Texas State University and would like to get more involved in the public policy surrounding early childhood. I dearly miss Morton and still get an occasional hankering for Cheese Shop. (2012)
Emilie Rafal (Women's Studies): Program Assistant for Higher Achievement, Baltimore
After taking two months to backpack through South America as a graduation present to myself, I found a great job in Baltimore, Maryland as Program Assistant for the Higher Achievement Program. Higher Achievement is a non-profit organization that provides rigorous after-school and summer programs for fifth-eighth graders in under-resourced communities. Higher Achievement started in DC thirty-five years ago, but has just recently started to expand to other cities. Baltimore is the second site, and the Richmond, VA site will be opening next summer! One of the best parts about the program, in my opinion, is that the curriculum, which includes literature, math, social studies, and science, focuses on social justice issues.
My role in the organization is to fill any voids they might have, including managing relationships with mentors, vendors, and other partners, maintaining records and databases, and coordinating field trips and transportation for our scholars.
Eventually, I am interested in going back to school to study education policy, so this job is a perfect fit!