Watch these four Future Forward featured alumni to get their perspectives on the technology industry, future segments which are increasingly important, and their advice for students to position themselves to be successful in the industry.
MIDDVantage is a virtual career exploration program that offers Middlebury students and alumni—through the perspective of Middlebury alumni and guests—exposure to fields of interest. Watch the interviews below.
- Jennifer Bailey ’84, Vice President Internet Services, Apple
- Suzie Reider ’87, Managing Director B2G Marketing and Partnerships, Google
- Lan Ye ’98, Vice President Teams Group, Microsoft
- Katie Macalintal ‘24
- Lindsey Schweitzer ‘24
The content segments below indicate the approximate time marks in the recording during which the specific content is discussed. The segments include:
- At 3:53 – “Tell us about your organization.”
- At 6:50 – “Tell us about the technology industry job market prospects.”
- At 12:45 – “Tell us about the growth areas for the future.”
- At 20:02 – “Tell us about data privacy efforts in the industry.”
- At 27:38 – “Tell us how students should prepare for tech’s future.”
- At 34:57 – “Audience Q&A”
Jeb Burchenal ’10, Director of Data Science, Meta. Within Meta, Data Science is the primary quantitative analytical arm of the organization. In his role, Jeb leads a team that uses data to make strategic decisions, set performance goals, and answer many day-to-day operational questions. Prior to joining Meta, he worked with Uber as a Director for New Mobility and Uber Eats. Jeb’s first role after graduating from Middlebury with a B.A. in Economics was as an Associate with Brown Brothers Harriman.
Kat James ’14, Founder, Four Hundred Feet. As the founder of Four Hundred Feet, Kat helps researchers, NGOs, and governmental organizations leverage drone technology for spatial data collection, supply chain management, and visual storytelling. She has over a decade of working at the intersection of emerging technologies and global health with experience working in over 10 countries around the world. Kat received a B.A. in Geography (specializing in Geographic Information Systems) and Global Health and has a dual Master’s in Public Health and Information Science from the University of Michigan.
Carmen Tedesco ‘01.5, Director Analytics at Fraym. Carmen is an international development practitioner specializing in data systems, impacts, and results. She’s a geospatial expert with a track record of building partnerships across public and private organizations and providing thought leadership on data systems issues for development. She has sector experience in climate change/climate services, WASH, youth development, agriculture/food security, and infectious disease epidemiology and has worked in: Armenia, Austria, Bangladesh, Bermuda, Bhutan, El Salvador, Germany, Haiti, Honduras, India, Indonesia, Kenya, Mozambique, Nepal, Thailand, Tunisia, Russia, Uruguay, and Vietnam. Carmen graduated from Middlebury with a B.A. in Geography and has a Masters in Geography from the University of Illinois.
Alec MacMillen ‘14, graduated from Middlebury in 2014 with a BA in International Politics and Economics. After completing a Fulbright English teaching fellowship in Jordan, he returned to the United States and worked in economic policy and analysis at the Congressional Budget Office and Edgeworth Economics. He earned an MS in Computational Analysis and Public Policy from the University of Chicago in 2020 and currently works as a data analyst specializing in voter protection at the Democratic National Committee.
Bryan Rich ‘86, majored in English Literature and Latin American Studies. He joined Accenture Federal Services in 2018 and founded the Applied Intelligence business to build and scale advanced data science, artificial intelligence and robotic process automation into a unified delivery framework. In the last two years, he has expanded the Accenture Applied Intelligence workforce to nearly 700 data scientists and engineers including a team of 70 applied research scientists with deep expertise in NLP, CV, CNN, ML. Bryan also started the Accenture Federal Applied Intelligence Lab (Discovery Lab) strengthening AFS leadership in scientific research. Before joining Accenture, Bryan worked in Europe, The Middle East and Latin America for 20 years leading leveraged data science technology businesses globally. He founded a decision intelligence software technology business with domain expertise in national security that he sold to the Carlyle Group via Novetta Solutions in 2015.
Nicole Fazio ‘11, is a Technical Product Manager at Amazon Alexa building o to 1 products that customers love. With training in econometrics, she started her career analyzing big data using SAS and Python, translating data-driven insights into strategic recommendations. She currently leads product thinking in the brand new space of voice advertising, launching the first-ever Alexa-actionable TV ad that allows customers to discover and browse products in the ad using their voice. Nicole Fazio mentors aspiring techies through the Built by Girls program. She has an MBA from MIT Sloan and was a Div I captain for the Middlebury Ski Team.
Robert Skiff ‘90 has three decades of experience in the area of business formation, education, and consulting. He co-founded the Vermont Commons School and has done consulting work in blockchain, online learning, higher education finance, system dynamics, and drug discovery optimization. Skiff served on the Board of Advisors for the Carnegie Program on the Educational Doctorate. He has an undergraduate degree from Middlebury College and a doctorate in leadership and policy studies from the University of Vermont.
Olivia Lew ‘07.5 went into the non‐ profit sector after graduating from Middlebury, where she quickly became engaged in recruiting and activating passionate business leaders to support environmental causes. She felt that lessons from the corporate world could offer an opportunity to make a larger impact, leading her to earn an MBA at Georgetown. From there, she went into public and private sector consulting with Booz Allen Hamilton and then Capgemini, which included opportunities to work in Europe and Asia. Implementing enterprise transformations while consulting Global 500 companies allowed Olivia to develop valuable experience in collaboration, creative thinking, and change management which she applied to her role on the early stage investment team at General Catalyst.
At General Catalyst, her investment focus was on early‐stage founders building transformative companies at the intersection of software and health care. Earlier this year, Olivia joined the team at Heart Health Intelligence as Chief Commercial Officer. Their goal is to enable healthcare in the home.
Alden Woodrow ‘02.5, was most recently the co-founder and CEO of Ike, a developer of automated trucking technology, which was acquired by Nuro in January 2021. Alden has over a decade of experience building industrial technologies in logistics, energy, and aerospace. He previously held senior product management roles at Uber’s Advanced Technologies Group, Google’s X lab, and wind energy startup Makani Power. Early in his career, Alden was an economic and environmental consultant on projects ranging from tradable fishing quotas to dog house manufacturing. At Middlebury, Alden majored in economics and philosophy, wrote the original business plan for the College’s organic garden, and was a captain and four-year starter on the ultimate frisbee team. He holds an MBA from UC Berkeley’s Haas School of Business with a focus on new product development.
Ellery Berk ‘14 runs Business Operations at Myst AI, a Google-backed, Series A startup focused on accelerating the renewable transition through better near-term electricity forecasting. Prior to Myst, Ellery worked as economic consultant on grid reliability and on the US’s first mandatory cap and trade program. She spent her MBA summer at Valo Ventures, a purpose-driven venture firm. Ellery holds a B.A. in Economics from Middlebury College, as well as an MBA from the Stanford GSB.
Will Hanley ‘15 is currently a Manager on the Project Finance team at Stem, Inc., a leading energy storage software and project development company located in San Francisco, CA. At Stem, he manages relationships with investment partners and oversees the financial transactions with them to enable energy storage projects to be built. With the support of the Stem team, he has funded over 100 energy storage projects worth more than $50 million. Prior to his role at Stem, Will worked as an Analyst at Cadmus Group, LLC a sustainability consulting firm located in Boston, MA. In this role, he aided government agencies with the development of policies and programs to grow solar and energy storage markets. Notable clients included the U.S. Department of Energy, New York State Energy & Research Development Authority, and Massachusetts Clean Energy Center. Will graduated from Middlebury College with a degree in Film & Media Studies.
Brian Sirkia ’12.5 is the CTO and Co-Founder of Lately, a marketing AI platform based in NYC. He leads the company’s product development and engineering, which is focused on using AI prediction models to augment and create marketing content for customers like Foursquare, SAP, Microsoft, and Samsung. Before Lately, he co-founded a Craigslist competitor startup and ran a digital marketing agency building websites for clients including Mass MoCA, Ellsworth Kelly, and the San Francisco Film Festival. At Middlebury, he studied Economics and Computer Science and played rugby.
Nima Alidoust ‘09 majored in Physics at Middlebury and received his Ph.D. in Quantum Chemistry from Princeton University. He worked for Mckinsey for a number of years serving clients in high-tech industries. He subsequently served as Vice President of Strategy and Head of Product at Rigetti Computing. Nima is now the CEO of a new company that is working on quantum simulation of materials.