Even amongst the rare 1.5% of college students who go abroad each year, Sage Corps Fellows return home with a tremendous advantage - the unparalleled opportunity to work alongside global entrepreneurs positions our alumni far ahead of their peers in the eyes of prospective employers. As part of our alumni program, we help our Fellows leverage a robust community of prior alums who now work at some of the world's top companies, such as:
J.P. Morgan Bank of America
But don't just take our word for it. Check out these recent statistics and some alumni stories - the outcomes are truly incredible and our alumni community has quickly become a robust network for young professionals who shared this once-in-a-lifetime experience:
As a member of Sage Corps' founding cohort in 2013, Shaun took a different path than his peers at the University of Pennsylvania's Wharton Business School. While most went to Wall Street, Shaun spent his summer in Buenos Aires working for Shopperception, where he focused on growth strategy and investor relations. His finance background helped him build financial models and pitch decks for venture capital investors.
Armed with this unique global experience, Shaun graduated from Wharton and went on to work as a Banking Analyst at UBS' technology group. From there, he became a venture capitalist by age 25 as an associate at Rogers Venture Partners. When reflecting on his Sage Corps fellowship, Shaun said, “The Sage Corps program provided me with a once in a lifetime experience in an incredible country with a rich culture and a vibrant history.”
Before Sage Corps, Kaleen Iwema had learned different coding languages in her computer science courses, but she had never written a line of code for a real company. In our program, she was tasked with building a new interface that leveraged Google Maps for an e-commerce site. That experience catalyzed her growth as a software engineer.
The following semester, Kaleen went on to work as a teaching assistant in the Department of Computer Science at Mt. Holyoke College, and upon graduating, accepted a full time position as a software engineer at IBM. She currently works in the IBM Watson & Cloud division.
When reflecting on her time in the Sage Corps program, she insightfully explained, “Don't underestimate the uniqueness that living/working abroad gives you, many people never dare to travel abroad...let alone live and work there.”
Sean Oliver had never set foot outside of the United States before Sage Corps. But, eager to push himself outside of his comfort zone, Sean flew to South America and landed at an outdoor apparel company called GoodPeople. While trying to navigate a new city in a foreign language, he dove head first into a live company acquisition — GoodPeople was exploring a potential sale. With no experience working on a live acquisition, Sean rolled up his sleeves and immersed himself in the project.
After his Sage Corps fellowship, Sean returned to school at Northwestern University. He went on to intern at Healthbox, a leading healthcare venture capital fund in Chicago. After graduating with a dual degree in Communication Studies and Economics, Sean accepted a position as a consultant at Oliver Wyman.
After studying abroad in Europe, Jack Adons wanted a completely different global experience. With Sage Corps, he found a unique opportunity to spend two months in Singapore. He worked as an intern at Divegraphy where he drove marketing analysis, content creation, social media management, and Search Engine Optimization (“SEO”) initiatives.
He later went on to work as a Researcher at his university, Bates College, before graduating with a degree in Economics. He now works in sales at a highly successful “Unicorn” (valued at over $1 billion) startup in the cybersecurity industry called Crowdstrike.
When reflecting on his Sage Corps experience, Jack shared, "The Sage Corps experience allowed me to develop the skills and passions necessary to tackle any adventure. I learned how to handle uncomfortable situations and face new challenges head-on. The startup culture in Singapore fostered self-empowerment and a curiosity for knowledge. You'll have the opportunity to meet unique, like-minded individuals and explore new places along the way."
As a management student at the Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania, Eugenie Gruman knew she wanted to work for a “B2C” (business-to-consumer) company. During her Sage Corps fellowship, she interned for a startup that built a fulfillment solution for global ecommerce brands. At this startup, she created financial models and key performance indicators (“KPIs”) to evaluate the company’s sales records and test potential growth strategies.
Eugenie shared her thoughts with us on her Sage Corps fellowship.
“Sage Corps provided me with the opportunity to work abroad without having to feel lost. They placed me in a startup that perfectly matched my professional aspirations and made sure everything was going smoothly. The staff based in Chicago was very present over email and the country managers on the ground in Buenos Aires were amazing. They planned interesting events for us every week. The social component of the program was also very helpful as it gave me opportunities to meet people at first when I didn’t know anyone there. I feel like I learned all the professional skills I wanted to acquire during my internship and I got an incredibly enriching experience. Working alongside Argentine entrepreneurs was the best way to exchange every day and learn about the culture. The true differential factor of Sage Corps is that you have a frame that provides lots of reassurance while also being fully immersed.”
As a mechanical engineer, Rob jumped at the opportunity to build a prosthetic leg for a startup in Santiago, Chile. In 8 weeks, he worked with another Sage Corps Fellow to design and build a working prototype. You can learn more about Rob’s experience in this feature by PSU.
After his Sage Corps fellowship, Rob went on to gain more great design experience through his university as a Design Engineer for ProvideAgro-Bartlett. His team’s design project won first place at the annual NABEC 2017 undergraduate engineering design competition. And after graduating this May, Rob will join Accenture as a consultant. We can’t wait to see what he builds for clients there!
As a cognitive science and judaic studies major at the University of Michigan, Sierra Lash was a unique Fellow in our program. But, she thrived. She interned for an animated video creation startup where she worked on user experience (“UX”) and analytics projects, leveraging her academic work. After Sage Corps, Sierra landed an incredible position at R/GA, a top global marketing and advertising agency, where she works full time as an Associate Strategist.
Adam Rawot went to Australia thinking he would be consulting for a technology startup. And, consult he did. But, within a few weeks, he and his boss built an entirely new company! And, when Adam returned to the University of Pennsylvania to finish his engineering and economics degrees, he added the titles of co-founder and CEO to his resume. Adam grew his new startup, Woveon, as its CEO along with another Sage Corps fellow, Jake Miller, who had worked with Adam at the startup in Sydney. Woveon completed an accelerator program, raised capital, and continues to thrive.
Thinking back to his time in Sage Corps, he explained that, “A lot of the network I used to launch the company was garnered indirectly through the program, including one of my co-founders and employees.” And in the ultimate “pay-it-forward” outcome, Woveon now serves as a host startup for our Fellows in Sydney where Adam’s co-founder lives. Check out this feature from Penn Wharton Entrepreneurship about Adam and his entrepreneurship journey.