Tag Archives: employer perspectives

Manna Project International

Taylor Brown is the US Coordinator at Manna Project International. Here, she provides some insight into her position and the work of the organization. Be sure to check out @NYUWassEmployer tomorrow, 4/29, as Manna Project will be guest tweeting our Day in the Life series.

I became involved with Manna Project International as a college sophomore. As a summer intern in Ecuador, I had the opportunity to give practical experience to my international politics and economics degree. Eager to continue the work in which I became involved, I returned to Ecuador as a Program Director as soon as I completed my undergraduate education at Middlebury College. I have had the opportunity to be involved in programs at all three sites (Ecuador, Nicaragua, and Guatemala), and now I work with various university chapters of Manna Project, and dialogue with prospective Program Directors.

What is Manna Project?
Manna Project International (MPI) is a nonprofit organization that connects college students, recent graduates and young professionals with communities in Latin America where they can apply their passions, experience, and education. With the vision of communities serving communities, MPI’s model is a collaborative community-based approach to development stressing three organizational pillars: holistic approach, community focus and leadership development. At our sites in Guatemala, Ecuador, and Nicaragua, groups of year-long Program Directors live and work together implementing a range of education, health and livelihood community development programs.

What is holistic community development?
In the development community, the word “sustainability” gets thrown around often. For Manna Project, sustainability can only be obtained by taking on development from a multitude of angles. For example, we have a math and literacy program for primary school children in Nicaragua, but if the students are not healthy, they will not be able to focus on their studies. To this end, MPI Nicaragua developed the “Comedor” program, which focuses on nutrition and dental hygiene. Given our holistic approach, Manna has a variety of programs that promote health, education, and business.

Manna Project also utilizes the unique skill set that each Program Director offers. We have medical school students who primarily focus on the clinics and child development program in Nicaragua, international finance graduates who have pushed the micro-finance program in Ecuador to new heights, and environmentally minded PDs in Guatemala that partnered with a local NGO to construct an addition to a primary school made from plastic bottles stuffed with inorganic trash. Each Program Director’s passion keeps Manna moving forward, adopting new programs, and encouraging the community to become more involved running these programs in order to build sustainable change.

Day in the Life: MPI Nicaragua
Founded in 2004, the MPI site in Managua, Nicaragua has grown exponentially since its inception. MPIN runs a number of education programs, from math and literacy, to English, to health education and basic hygiene. There also exists a micro-finance program, where small loans are given to budding businesses in the community. MPIN also works with young children to promote child development and growth in underdeveloped communities that lack access to healthcare facilities. We are present in two clinics, one of which was recently constructed in partnership with Florida State University’s medical school in Cedro Galán, the community in which many of our programs take place. MPIN also partners with Lacrosse the Nations to build leadership and confidence through sport.

Day in the Life: MPI Ecuador
Manna Project expanded to the Chillos Valley of Ecuador in 2007. The majority of our programs in Ecuador take place in our “Centro”, located on the corner of four communities within the Chillos Valley. Education programs include English, computer technology classes, art class, and nutrition to both adults and students in a local high school. The Centro also offers exercise classes five days a week, and is open each afternoon for anyone in the community to stop by. At 2:30 pm every day, the neighborhood children run into the library to play educational games and interact with Program Directors. The micro-finance program took off in 2012, providing loans to small businesses in surrounding communities. The success stories from these small businesses are inspiring, and Manna is already on its third cycle of loans, with 100% payback so far.

Day in the Life: MPI Guatemala
The newest of Manna Project’s sites, Guatemala was integrated into the community of Chaquijyá in 2010. The majority of MPIG’s programs are education based, and take place in the two local primary schools. What really differentiates Chaquijyá from the other communities in which Manna exists is that the primary language of the community is a Mayan dialect called Kaqchikel. Given the bilingual nature of the community, teachers, parents, and students alike are very interested in learning English. Other education programs include art, health, and environmental education. Program Directors are constantly running programs in the local schools and alongside other local organizations in Guatemala.

Spirit of the Program Director
Our Program Directors boast a variety of backgrounds, but all of them come to Manna with a passion for the work we do. Across the board, they are:
•    Open to new experiences
•    Flexible (we are on Latin American time)
•    Creative
•    Self-starters
•    Passionate
•    Relationship builders

Apply today on CareerNet for the International Program Director Internship position. (NYU CareerNet ID 925524)
For more information on Manna Project programs, or for information on how to become involved, please don’t hesitate to email me at taylor.brown@mannaproject.org or visit our website: www.mannaproject.org

In Case You Missed It: Day in the Life with TheBach.com

Did you miss Joanne’s day as Founder of TheBach.com? If so, click on the logo below for a recap.

Sound like a place you’d like to intern? Apply on CareerNet, Job ID 927783.

Startup Thoughts and Considerations by 9th Dot

9th Dot is a consumer insight platform that gives individuals a “blank canvas” through which they can share their innovative ideas for improvements with businesses, and  rewards consumers for successfully doing so.  From the businesses’ perspective, they receive insightful information in the form of answers to questions they often don’t even know to ask. Last week, they offered up some advice for the interviewing process. Today, they share what to consider when starting your own business.

So you’re ready to take the plunge?  You’ve got a great idea for a product or service that solves a problem with a huge market size, you’re well underway with developing the technology and have written more code than you ever thought possible, you’re already crafting your go to market strategy and you’ve thought through a business model that will scale seamlessly as your startup grows like a weed.  Think again, and again after that.

Starting your own business is one of the most gratifying things a person can do. Take it from us, we thought careers in banking were exactly what we wanted until we had a taste of what entrepreneurship had to offer.  From seeing your app published in the app store to hearing your first potential customer express interest in your product, starting a business will give you countless ups, but also plenty of downs.

The advice we never received, well, maybe we never sought out, is what exactly to expect before starting a company.  Hindsight, 20/20 as it may be, will never provide all the answers, but it’s certainly given us some perspective that we’d like to share with other budding entrepreneurs.

With that in mind, we asked ourselves, what would have been most helpful for us before we started out?

First, for any milestone you set or any hurdle you want to cross in which you think things will become easier, guess again.  For all the progress we’ve made, from writing the business plan, developing the technology, getting covered in TechCrunch, receiving a formal offer to join an accelerator program, and delivering our first demo to a customer, we’ve continued to learn one thing – it doesn’t get easier.  No matter what your strategy for building your business, whether it be widespread user adoption, monetization from corporate clients, or a combination of both, be prepared for a long slog ahead with progress likely to come at a rate slower than you expect.

The reality is that it takes time to build a business.  Viral marketing, hair on fire problem solving and growth hacking are all great buzz phrases, but none will be your cure all panacea as you look to build awareness of your startup and the problems it solves.  Be creative in your go to market strategy.  Ask friends and family what they think – they’ll likely give you feedback that will lead you to think and rethink ways in which you position your product in the marketplace.

Talk to your co-founders and then talk to them again.  Communication and candor is paramount.  As most investors will tell you, the number one reason startups fail is due to differences in opinions that co-founders are unable to reconcile.  Founders agreements and incorporation papers are a great start, but nothing takes the place of addressing key questions early on:

– Do all of the co-founders share similar risk appetites?  The idea of launching a startup is appealing to everyone, but tolerable by few.  Make sure from the get go that everyone is prepared to give your startup the time and attention necessary to succeed before doing anything else

-Do all of the co-founders have the financial cushion necessary to give it a shot? No matter how much progress you make, and how quickly you make it, you’re a long way from being comfortable.  Assuming you all have the patience to remain uncomfortable for a while, make sure everyone is prepared to forego a meaningful income for a while.

– Be prepared to change and change often.  Pivoting is another one of those buzzwords in the startup industry, but it’s much simpler than that.  While plenty of companies do truly pivot, in many cases more than once, we learned to simply not commit to anything other than having a clear vision to experiment and experiment often.  We thought we had it figured out – our idea solves a major problem, a problem we vetted across several major VCs by sharing our business plan before embarking on our journey.  We thought, “let’s get a little bit of media coverage and run some campaigns over Facebook and Twitter and we’ll be off to the races” – were we ever mistaken.  Dampen your expectations and then dampen them again.  Building a business and a brand takes time, endless amounts of energy, and above all a passion to see your idea grow into a business. Regardless of how good you think your go to market strategy is, think of as many ideas for building awareness for your product or service as you can, you’ll test them all and then think of some more.

Above all, don’t launch your startup because it’s cool to say you launched a startup or because you want to make a lot of money – neither of these reasons are likely to lead to success.  Start a business because you see a solution to a problem that will only seem obvious after you’ve exhaustively told your story to customers and investors, and likely the rest of the World.  We started 9th Dot, a crowdsourcing consumer insight platform, because we saw a tremendous opportunity to create a “win-win” situation for both consumers and businesses. Creating a platform that enables consumers to deliver insightful solutions to businesses and rewards them for doing so made a lot of sense to us, but it was the realization that we couldn’t live with ourselves if we did not that made us decide to slog it out.  As we were told by one VC investor early on, “Remember, entrepreneurs are mostly irrational, driven by a passion for creating something where there was nothing and realizing a vision they couldn’t ignore. It’s like jumping off a cliff and having to build a plane before you hit the ground!”

What’s Next? Finance: Beyond Investment Banking

Curious about careers outside the scope of traditional investment banking opportunities? Come to Wasserman this Friday, February 28th at 12:30pm. Panelists will share their insight into different career paths within finance. Through this event, you will learn how to jumpstart your career, prep for interviews in the industry, and how to effectively network your way to success.

Speakers will be on hand from the following organizations:

RSVP today through CareerNet!

In case you missed it: Day in the life at Avoce

Here’s a recap of Co-Founder and Co-CEO Raphael’s day @AvoceEyewear, an e-commerce startup! Click their logo for a recap.
If the awesome organization seems like a good fit for you, make sure you apply to their Marketing Strategy intern position at NYU CareerNet Job ID 909430
Also, don’t miss out on the NYU Startup Expo on 11/21. Register today for more information!

5 Do’s and Don’ts for New Job Candidates

By: Diane Henry, President: Red Real Estate

As an NYU alum who now periodically hires students from my alma mater, I thought I would share advice from an employer’s perspective. This post is for students who elect to work while they are in school (a smart idea in preparation for today’s job market).

1.       Do let your personality shine in an interview. You needn’t divulge details about your private life or awkwardly crack jokes but you can let the interviewer have a sense of you as a person and not just as a talking resume. Interviewers are human and in addition to considering your qualifications they will be interested in getting a feel for what it would be like to work with you.

2.       Don’t take for granted that you will get a letter of recommendation for positions you held for a very short time. It’s case by case. Exception if your boss explicitly offers, if you did a summer intensive or otherwise contributed real value. A case could be made that there is no harm in asking but think about it – even if they say yes, would you really want to stake your future full time job application on a recommendation from someone who does not know your work well enough to give a meaningful endorsement? Use judgment.

3.       Don’t call in sick on your second day of work. Don’t get me wrong -I am not suggesting you work while actually, really ill. But if your time with the company has been short and you take a day off early on, it can raise a red flag.

4.       Don’t put your feet up on the office furniture. You may encounter some relaxed company cultures. Our team, for example, has a great sense of humor and a very jovial vibe. But don’t get comfortable to the point where you are not respecting the enterprise. Take your cues from others in your office, if they are not doing it, don’t do it.

5.       Do know the difference between a job and an internship. Both are great for exploring what type of career or industry you might be interested in. However, internships exist primarily to teach you about the job/industry/company and give you “practice” work experience. Internships vary widely in responsibility level: from doing monkey work and making coffee runs to doing substantial work that ads value.

A part time job, on the other hand is just that – a job. In many cases, jobs more closely resemble what you can expect post-graduation. A job’s purpose is not primarily to teach you – though you will learn from it. Its purpose is for you to contribute value to the company. A job has a higher level of accountability and it generally matters whether or not you do it well. As a hiring employer, I consider a job history that includes paid professional positions to be a stronger indication of the level of experience, responsibility and work readiness of a candidate than internships alone. (Note: Your lifeguard experience two summers ago does not count! Unless you are applying to be a lifeguard.) And of course you make some money in process!

If you are a student seeking part time work we invite you to submit your resume to admin@red-realestate.com. Apply on NYU CareerNet for the following positions: Assistant to company President (907911) Marketing and Administrative Assistant (907907).

You can also visit us on the web at redrealestatenyc.com .

Have a great fall!

Diane Henry

President, Red Real Estate

Employer Perspectives: AllianceBernstein

Name:  Muneeb Syed

Grad Year:  2013

Current Position:  Investment Management Operations Associate

Muneeb Syed graduated from NYU in 2013 with a major in Economics. He is currently a Technology & Operations Program Associate at AllianceBernstein in the Investment Management Track. In his spare time, he likes to watch and play sports.

I’m currently an Associate at AllianceBernstein in Derivative Operations under the Investment Management track. Prior to joining, I had attended NYU and graduated with an Economics major in May 2013. Prior to starting full time in the rotational program, I took part in the 10 week internship in the summer after my junior year. That experience allowed me to realize that AllianceBernstein is where I wanted to spend my career. I was fortunate to land an offer to return for the rotational program and it has certainly lived up to its expectation.

Benefits of a Rotational Program

The rotational program presents an opportunity to continue to develop new skills and continuously learn about different sides of the business. It provides direct exposure to many different roles within the company and an opportunity to really figure out where we find the most interest. There are always new challenges or opportunities to learn about the industry and to really refine our skill-set.  It’s a difficult transition going from college to the work force. However it’s an adjustment that AllianceBernstein does a great job in supporting. Unlike most regular full time positions where you’re thrown into a particular role on a team, a rotational program allows you to get experiences in many different areas of the business before settling on a permanent role. AllianceBernstein serves as a great place to not only apply the skills that are taught throughout college but to really learn new ones.

Culture at AllianceBernstein

The culture at AllianceBernstein is one of the greatest selling points that the firm has. It’s modeled behind four behaviors:

·       Be Team-oriented

·       Be Ingenious

·       Be Relentless

·       Be Accountable

It’s an environment that tremendously supports collaboration between peers. The goal of the firm is to serve our clients to the best of our abilities and that isn’t done by any single individual but instead by putting together the ideas of everyone. The firm is relentless in that individuals go above and beyond to complete the challenges that are presented to them. By being accountable, individuals aren’t asked to take the blame if something goes wrong but it empowers them with the ability to speak their mind and take action. And lastly the firm is ingenious in the way that it promotes creative ideas and provides the resources and tools to implement them. All four behaviors are very apparent at the firm and it has created a really fun and exciting environment to work in.

Employee Resource Groups

The firm also does a great job in providing opportunities to create a great balance outside of work.  There are many employee resource groups that are tailored towards different interests. For example, the AB Volunteers group plans different events to provide employees the opportunity to do community service dealing with various social issues. They advocate the importance of giving back to the community and serving those that are less fortunate. Other groups include the AB enERGy team that promotes and advocates environmental-friendliness through their events as well as the LGBT club, AB Run Club, and several others. It serves as a tremendous opportunity to network with our fellow employees throughout the company while taking part in a lot of the things that we’re passionate about.

Size of AllianceBernstein

The size of firm is one of the greatest strengths at AllianceBernstein. Larry Cohen, the head of Technology and Operations perfectly defines the firm as, “big enough to do what you would want, but small enough where you know who you’re working with.” At AllianceBernstein, we get to work on really exciting projects alongside brilliant individuals. There are a lot of tremendous minds at this firm who are open to sharing their insight. It serves as a great opportunity to continue to learn and grow.


The mission is really simple at AllianceBernstein: to serve our clients. Regardless of where individuals are in the firm or what their specific role is; their ultimate goal is to help the end client. Everyone is supportive of one another and help achieve that ultimate goal. Managers do a great job in explaining how everything aligns with the strategy of the firm that enables a unity to exist throughout the firm. AllianceBernstein is a great place to not only start off a career but where one can continue to grow and develop. The firm is focused on keeping its talent and nurturing them to take on leadership opportunities. The rotational program is the beginning of that development process.

Interested in a career at AllianceBernstein?  Get more info and apply to jobs by checking out the below!

Thursday, September 12NYU Career Fair

Friday, September 13 On Site Info Session – AB Office 2:00pm

Monday, September 16NYU Twitter – Matt Chen will be posting about Life In the Day Of – Software Development Associate

Monday, September 16 – On Campus Info Session – Career Center, Room B @ 12:30

Job Postings:

Software Developer: Job ID 902067

Infrastructure Engineer: Job ID 902060

Business Analyst: Job ID 902024

Investment Management Operations: Job ID 902064

Global Analytics: Job ID 902046

In case you missed it: Day in the Life Lippincott

Want to know what it would be like to work as a Brand Strategy Analyst? Catch up with Ben’s day at Lippincott

Seem like something you may be interested in? Come to Lippincott’s information session on Monday, September 10th at the Wasserman to learn more and to network! Make sure to RSVP ASAP!

Follow us @NYUWassEmployer for more Day in the Life tweets! And, follow us @NYUWasserman for more career related information!


The Real World Doesn’t Come With Instructions: How The Biggest Failure Of My Life Became The Best Thing To Ever Happen To Me

It was the Spring of 2011 in NYC, I was 27 years old and felt trapped at my marketing job. I wanted my work to have an impact, to matter, but I didn’t know what to do.I decided I would finally take action—I decided to become a teacher. I joined Teach For America, quit my job, and drove 1,200 miles south to the Mississippi Delta (yes Mississippi) where I had committed to teach for the next 2 years. As the summer training progressed I was getting more anxious about having my own class in the fall. I started to get physically sick and on the first day of school, I quit.

That 20 hour drive back home was pretty much the most dreadful experience in my life. I no longer had my NYC apartment, I no longer had my job…so I moved back in with my mom. What followed was 6 months of straight up confusion, frustration and depression. “What do I do?” “What have I done?” The self-questioning was non-stop.

Eventually I was able to take a step back and realize I’m not alone in having no idea what do with my life. There are so many options out there, what’s the “right” one? At the same time some of my friends were taking risks and making their dreams happen. I wanted to get their stories out there to inspire people like me to see what’s possible if you say yes to yourself and go for it. Today, in 2013.

And so I created a podcast. It’s called Prologue Profiles and people like Jeff Laub of the Blind Barber, Rameet Chawla of Fueled and Colin Wright of ExileLifestyle candidly share their stories of how they overcame their fears to live the life they want. And from interviewing over 40 people over the past year, I realized those who are doing amazing things are no different than you or I, they just got connected to what they wanted to do, dropped their fear, and took action. In other words, it comes down to their mindset. 

This realization led to the creation of Prologue Sessions, the live event series for realizing your career dreams. The next event is on Tuesday July 2nd, from 7:00pm to 8:45pm at Ella Lounge in the East Village. It’s free and you can RSVP here.

I love what I’m building with Prologue because of the difference it’s making with those who listen to the podcast and attend the events. I frequently think back on what I went through two years ago. I’d just be returning now, actually. Sometimes, it turns out, the things we think are our biggest failures are actually our biggest breakthroughs.

Guest Blog: Primary Wave Music Publishing

Fresh out of Quinnipiac University, I found myself looking for a job position in the music business and stumbled upon a internship listing for a company called, Primary Wave Music. I applied and received a position as an A&R intern. I can confidently say this position has ultimately helped me to shape and define a successful future within the music industry. I worked with top industry professionals  who have all worked management positions at established labels such as Sony Music, Universal and Warner Music Group.

Under these mentor’s supervision, I was given assignments that were instrumental into the success of the whole company. Assignments ranged anywhere from working with artists to design their promotional posters and one sheets, to creating e-mail campaigns for industry officials. I also was able to attend company meetings (which usually interns never have the luxury to do) and go to artists showcases. It was a very refreshing experience seeing as I didn’t feel like a normal intern being constantly sent out for coffee.

I also found the other interns working at Primary Wave to be helpful and just as much a pleasure to work with as the staff! Any intern position within the company also offers tons of networking opportunities, which is necessary to do well in a business as tight-knit as the music industry. Ultimately, you are in charge of your success at Primary Wave, but it is the perfect place to hit the ground running if you are looking to make your mark in the music industry! Good luck!

-Mara Y.

Interested in working at Primary Wave Music? They are currently hiring! Apply by searching for NYU CareerNet Postings Electronic Dance Music Intern 890177 & Royalties and Acquisition Intern 890252