My road in life has taken me all over.
Early on I followed others' academic dreams and expectations of me. That did not work out for me but it brought me to a new country.
I had to find a way to support myself financially. I applied for jobs that my academic advisors wouldn't support, but I got hired and gained expertise (and supported myself.)
I worked at a company that was winding down. I read the signs and started proactively looking for something else, returning to old connections and looking for new ones.
I needed to find a new job but didn't see listed jobs that appealed to me. I started talking to people about ideas they had and ideas I had, and used my experience to create a new solution.
Nobody likes people who "failed", but we all do at times. I wanted to change lives by empowering people rather than ignoring or denigrating them for being in a group at risk from a systemic failure.
At first, my non-profit organization was not aligned with funders. I spent time explaining why our approach was the only way forward to solve a problem. It was risky but we made it a national model.
Keep following my journey


High School
Hebrew University
Temple University
University of Pennsylvania
Exec Ed: Leading in Time of Chaos & Women and Power
Harvard University, Kennedy School of Government


President and Co-Founder

I lead a national organization that builds and supports community programs for adults to go back to and through college.

Career Roadmap

My work combines:
My work combines:
Upholding a Cause and Belief

Day to Day

I talk with people who are interested in finding ways to support adults who had to stop out of college and now want to go back and finish. My days include fundraising, leading and applying strategy, managing the organization & technical tasks, I learn from my field and others, connecting with ideas and people, mentoring and overseeing, lots of reading and listening, figuring out solutions, creating plans and executing them. People and details matter, even when you're at the "top".

Advice for Getting Started

Here's the first step for everyone

Learn lots of varied skills: understand budgets and financial constraints, learn to create websites and outreach materials, expand your social and professional connections, prove you can finish what you start, polish your writing skills!!!! Seek organizations that value you and your time (I hate unpaid or low-paid internships). Offer to help: lead with how you can help the organization or society, and respect that non-profits want staff stability and growth, not job-hoppers.

Recommended Education

My career is not related to what I studied. I'd recommend this path instead:


The Noise I Shed

""If you want a real career, get a real degree, not in Linguistics..." "That's never been done..." "You don't have a PhD, who will hire you?""

Challenges I Overcame

First-Generation Immigrant