Leaders Share Their Future Outlook
futureforward features several alumni and parents who are leaders in a variety of career fields, discussing their industry’s current environment, their perspective on the future outlook for that career field, and action steps students can take now to position themselves for entry into those career fields.
Koby Altman ‘04
This futureforward segment features Koby Altman general manager of the Cleveland Cavaliers. The 2016 NBA champions. Koby is a 2004 graduate of Middlebury College and an Alumni Trustee of the College. He is also on the National Board of Directors of the Posse Foundation, which identifies recruits and trains individuals with extraordinary leadership potential, providing full tuition leadership scholarship from Posse partner colleges and universities, including Middlebury. Koby is joining us to give us his vantage point on how the pandemic environment has affected his work, what the future outlook is for the sports entertainment field and what action steps current students may want to consider to position themselves to enter this field in the future.
Koby reminds us that “with adversity comes opportunity.” He provides a future outlook for sports entertainment that utilizes technology in new ways including personalization for the fans, different camera angles not seen before, and compelling content. There are a variety of jobs within the sports industry that are appropriate for students of the liberal arts. Do some research to learn more about opportunities and what skills are desirable. Schedule an appointment with a career advisor to discuss industry trends, navigate the possibilities, and identify options that might be a good fit for you. You also have access to Midd2Midd, a great community with members who want to share their career perspectives with you.
Check out these resources: Work in Sports, Prepare for a career conversation, Network, download the white paper, The Game Has Changed Game – How the Business of Sport is Adapting to Life under Lockdown, read New ways to activate key as NBA restarts season.
Learn more about the Cleveland Cavaliers.
Jennifer Bailey ‘84
This futureforward segment features Jennifer Bailey, Vice President of Internet Services for Apple Pay, a digital payment service offered by Apple. Jennifer is a 1984 graduate of Middlebury College and has had a variety of management roles within the technology industry, including a 20 year career with Apple. Jennifer is joining us to give her vantage point on how the pandemic environment has affected her industry, what the future outlook is for this career field, and what action steps current students may want to consider to position themselves to enter this field in the future.
Jennifer gave a fascinating future outlook for the technology industry. Some of the innovations that were in the works have been propelled forward due to the pandemic. Technology is affecting nearly every industry from digitization of healthcare to touchless transit. Jennifer suggests for you to evaluate your interests and see if they line up generally to an industry that has potential for high growth because high growth means more jobs, which means more opportunities for you. Talk to as many people in the industry as possible. Start by reaching out to an alum on Midd2Midd. Jennifer also says to try a lot of things when you are young. Sign up for a free class on LinkedIn Learning and build your skill-set. Employers will seek individuals who can problem-solve, communicate, negotiate and learn. Be sure to visit the STEM career path page for more resources. Advisors in CCI are available to help you explore your interests and see where you can utilize your strengths. Schedule an appointment on Handshake!
Shawn Ryan ‘88
This futureforward segment features Shawn Ryan, Screenwriter, Television Producer, and Founder of Midd Kid Productions. Shawn is a 1988 graduate of Middlebury College. Shawn has also been an active member of the Middlebury Professional Network which supports alumni and student efforts to navigate their way in the entertainment career field, as well as, other professional sectors. Shawn is joining us to give his vantage point on how the pandemic environment has affected his work, what the future outlook is for this career field, and what action steps current students may want to consider to position themselves to enter this field in the future.
Shawn provided some great advice for anyone interested in entertainment careers that include writing, acting, and post-production skill-building activities like editing and visual effects. You can film, direct, and edit your own short film right from your phone. What a great addition to your online portfolio! Be sure to make connections with people in the creative arts – they are eager to help. Remember you have access to Midd2Midd, a great community with members who want to share their career perspectives. You can also send a message through LinkedIn, where it is easy to find alumni. Schedule an appointment with a career advisor, learn how to prepare for a career conversation, and network. Be sure to visit the Arts, Media, and Communications career path resource page and check out these options for skill-building and experience opportunities: Upwork, LinkedIn Learning, Coursera.
Shows produced by MiddKid Productions.
Kelly Holley ‘92
This futureforward segment features Kelly Holley, Chief Operating Officer of The Challenge Foundation which strives to effect positive social impact through education. Kelly is a 1992 graduate of Middlebury College and is joining us to give her vantage point on how the pandemic environment has affected her work, what the future outlook is for this career field, and what action steps current students may want to consider to position themselves to enter this field in the future.
Kelly is confident that the educational background that you receive from Middlebury provides all the tools necessary to be an asset in a social equity or education field. Thinkers and innovators are needed who can envision education, not for what it has been, but for what it should be. The question is where do you want to plug in? Whether you want to teach, counsel students, work on policy or mental health, or something else, you can make a change. Steps you can take now:
- Look into taking a mental health first aid class.
- Learn about issues that people in poverty face and find a course or a workshop, perhaps through your local United Way.
- Volunteer for a nonprofit or for a school in your area. Connect with the Center for Community Engagement at Middlebury.
- Research educational policy and funding in your state and attend a local board meeting. Get involved and understand the issues that are facing your community.
- Consider a Master’s in education, school counseling, social work, or nonprofit management.
Advisors in CCI are available to help you explore your interest in education or other careers with a social impact. Schedule an appointment on Handshake!
Learn more about The Challenge Foundation.
Jason Robart ‘87
This futureforward segment features Jason Robart, Co-Founder and Managing Director of Seae Ventures, a venture fund founded in 2019 with an emphasis on sustainable & disruptive technologies applied across the healthcare ecosystem, and a focus on overlooked entrepreneurs. Jason is a 1987 graduate of Middlebury College and currently resides in the Middlebury area. Jason is joining us to give his vantage point on how the pandemic environment has affected his work, what the future outlook is for the technology-based healthcare field, and what action steps current students may want to consider to position themselves to enter this field in the future.
Jason says to learn as much as you can about a particular industry or a sector of an industry. When you know the economics of the industry, you will be better equipped to identify potential solutions in that space. Those that excel in venture capitalism have a deep subject matter understanding of the industry in which they are investing. They also have strong analytical skills and extraordinary attention to detail. Having experience with financial modeling, business planning, and valuation techniques can help, as can familiarity with private equity/venture finance concepts. Jason reminds us that you don’t need to go to a venture capital firm to get venture capital experience.
- It is super important to connect with people and stay in touch. Don’t hesitate to email and update people you have reached out to. Remember you also have access to Midd2Midd, a great community with members who want to share their career perspectives with you.
- Acquire knowledge and insight by frequenting VC blogs like FeldThoughts and Both sides of the Table. Follow trends in publications like TechCrunch, PandoDaily, and Mashable.
- Schedule an appointment with a career advisor to discuss industry trends, navigate the possibilities, and identify options that might be a good fit for you.
Check out these resources: Rock Health, a venture fund and advisory services business dedicated to digital health; Brooklyn Bridge Ventures, an early stage venture capital firm dedicated to accessibility and the fostering of open innovation networks; and Kiva, non-profit based in San Francisco, with offices in Bangkok, Nairobi, Portland and staff around the globe.
Learn more about Seae Ventures.