Hannah Benz

Career & Professional School Advising

Assistant Director, Health Professions & STEM

 work(802) 443-5804
 Adirondack House 111
 Health Professions and STEM Fields

My advising philosophy:

I like to think that being a doctor has made me a good listener. My approach to advising mirrors how I’ve worked with patients: mindful, intentional listening followed up with questions for further exploration. By developing a relationship with a student overtime, and providing them the space to explore and reflect, they will make career choices that are right for them. 

How did you get to Midd, Hannah? 

I met my husband on the first day of Harvard Medical School and we got married during our final year. Eric graduated from Middlebury in 1988 and comes from a family with several Middlebury alums. When it came time to find a job after finishing residency, we chose Middlebury which has been a wonderful place to raise our children (4) and our dogs (2) and our cat (1). 

What's the most rewarding aspect of your role at Middlebury? 

I love working with students. When I practiced Internal Medicine, I especially enjoyed working with emerging adults. It’s very rewarding to explore a topic with a student and partner with them to craft a solution.

What is one crossroad or misstep you faced in your professional career, and how do you reflect on it now? 

Although I trained and became board certified in Internal Medicine, I have had an unconventional medical career. I’ve worked at a major teaching hospital, seen patients at a free health clinic, been a Town Health Officer, and taught diagnostic skills to first year medical students. Four children and a husband who is a busy orthopedic surgeon is the backstory for my unusual trajectory. I’ve loved every job I’ve had in large part because it was the right job for me and my family at that particular point in time. I think a degree can be used in many different ways (see above) and adaptability and openness to change are crucial.

Wisdom you want all Middlebury students to know, in six words or less:

There are no short cuts.

Your alter ego spends her time as...

A medical librarian! I love sleuthing out information, getting lost in stacks of 100 year old medical journals, reading historical accounts of disease, and looking at old photographs of pathologic specimens.