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Office of Career Strategy Staff

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The Office of Career Strategy is fortunate to have outstanding career advisors and administrators to provide the best advice and guidance for our students, alumni and employers. Students are encouraged to meet with any advisor to start the job search process, and as you progress in your search choose to meet with an advisor with deeper expertise in such areas of non-profit careers, government careers, applying to graduate school, and careers in the arts.

Staff List

Robyn Acampora

Director of Strategic Initiatives and Public Service Careers

Robyn joined the Office of Career Strategy in the fall of 2012 and is eager to meet with students who are at any point of their career exploration process. Robyn oversees the Common Good & Creative Careers team. She also manages a number of public service initiatives for the office including the Yale Alumni Community Service Fellowship and Yawkey Fellowship. She is also the Office of Career Strategy liaison for student athletes. Before joining the Office of Career Strategy, Robyn spent seven years at Yale Law School’s Career Development Office as the Associate Director of Administration, where she worked on a number of public interest programs and was responsible for all postgraduate employment reporting. Robyn is a member of NACE, EACE and Net Impact. When she is not working, Robyn is typically enjoying pizza nights and dance parties with her husband, two children, dog, guinea pig and three fish.

Lisa Blees

Senior Administrative Assistant

Lisa started her Yale career in 2004 and joined the Office of Career Strategy in 2006 where she supports Health Professions Advising and STEM Connect. In her free time, Lisa enjoys traveling with her family, playing with her two dogs, Cosmo and Louie, and discussing books, movies and current events.

Julia Bourque

Senior Associate Director

Julia manages internship programs, develops short-term opportunities with Yale affiliates, and provides general career counseling for Yale undergraduates. She joined the Office of Career Strategy in the spring of 2014 as Assistant Director.  Prior to coming to the Office of Career Strategy, Julia received her B.A. in History and French from Boston University, and her M.A. in International Education from the SIT Graduate Institute. Julia started at Yale in Fall 2013 as an intern at the Office of International Students and Scholars. In her free time, Julia enjoys traveling, and snowboarding and wakesurfing in her home state of Vermont.

Denise Byrnes

Associate Director

Denise primarily focuses on cultivating and maintaining partnerships with employers and alumni interested in recruiting Yale talent, while also advising students as they pursue their career goals.  Denise oversees the On-Campus Recruiting program, and several industry specific recruiting events. She also oversees DC Impactlink, an interviewing event for students interested in public policy, think tanks, non-profits and media organizations located in Washington, D.C. During her time at Yale, she has been actively involved with EACE having served on two committees, and more recently served on a committee for NACE. Prior to joining Yale, she advised MBA candidates while at the Lubin Graduate Center of Pace University. Denise began her career working in the financial sector and has held positions at two major financial institutions. She graduated from Stony Brook University and has a Master’s in Education from Fordham University. She enjoys cycling, hiking and paddle boarding.

Julia Coppola

Senior Administrative Assistant

Julia joined the Office of Career Strategy in August 2001. She coordinates the on-campus recruiting program, where she works with over 85 employers who conduct interviews with over 1,800 students each year. With positive energy and enthusiasm, Julia facilitates industry events where 200 employers meet with nearly 1,900 students and assists employers, students and alumns in navigating Yale Career Link. Oustside of work Julia enjoys baking, kayaking, hiking and being with family and friends

Laurie Coppola

Senior Associate Director

Laurie advises and counsels undergraduates and alumni in Yale College and students in the Graduate School of Arts and Sciences interested in pursuing further education and careers in the healthcare and STEM fields. Prior to joining Yale, Laurie has held various managerial roles for AT&T. During her tenure with AT&T she managed a staff of over twenty employees and led process improvement efforts which enhanced the effectiveness, accuracy and delivery of billing information to customers. Laurie earned a B.A. from Albertus Magnus College. She embarked on her new career with the Office of Career Strategy after obtaining her M.S. in Human Services from Albertus Magnus College. Laurie’s latest opportunity has been teaching counseling techniques to students pursuing their undergraduate degrees in human services from her alma mater.

Jeanine Dames

Associate Dean, Yale College and Director, Office of Career Strategy

Jeanine joined the Office of Career Strategy in the fall of 2011 after serving as a Director in the Career Development Office at Yale Law School, and a Senior Associate Director in the Career Development Office at the Yale School of Management. Prior to joining Yale, Jeanine worked in career services at both Fordham University School of Law and the Benjamin N. Cardozo School of Law in Manhattan. She is an active member of the National Association of Colleges and Employers and was a founding member of the Alumni Section of the Association of Legal Career Professionals. Prior to transitioning to career services, Jeanine was an attorney and practiced real estate and environmental law in New York and Connecticut. She also served as pro bono legal counsel for South Brooklyn Legal Services. She has a B.S. from Cornell University and a J.D. from Fordham University School of Law. Jeanine is an avid Greek Mythology fan and enjoys spending her free time with her husband, son and two dogs - Artemis and Atlas.

Lori Ferrara

Senior Administrative Assistant

Lori joined the Office of Career Strategy in the spring of 2001 working with the domestic internship program. She now works with all Bulldogs Across America, and Preferred Yale Partner internships providing administrative, student, and employer support. Lori also supports graduate students in the Graduate School of Arts and Sciences. Additionally, Lori oversees the weekly Yale College newsletter content compilation and distribution. She graduated with a B.S. in Marketing from Salve Regina University in Newport, RI. In her spare time she enjoys sports and hanging out with friends and family.

Brian Frenette

Senior Associate Director

Brian joined the Office of Career Strategy in summer of 2013 and currently serves as Senior Associate Director, working with students in Yale's Graduate School of Arts & Sciences and postdoctoral fellows and associates. Prior to joining Yale, Brian worked in career services at Wesleyan University and the University of Massachusetts Amherst, where he oversaw their Field Experience program. Brian is a member of NACE and the CCEIA. In addition to working in career services, Brian has also served as an adjunct instructor at the University of New Haven and the University of Massachusetts Amherst. Brian lives in the Middletown area and is an avid fan of skiing and hiking.

Stephanie Glover

Senior Administrative Assistant

Stephanie joined the Office of Career Strategy in 1999. She has a Bachelor’s degree in Consumer Affairs in Management/Business Administration from Howard University. After graduating she worked as a fire and lawn equipment safety specialist with the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission in Bethesda, MD. Stephanie has a passion for health & wellness/nutrition and will be pursuing a second bachelor’s degree in Dietary Science at the University of New Haven in the fall. Stephanie lives in New Haven and when not at Yale she can be found gardening or working on a DIY project at home. She likes to travel, loves children and in her spare time she sings with her church choir and works with the Youth Ministry.

David Halek

Director of Employer Relations

As the director of employer relations, David Halek is responsible for building and maintaining relationships with leading organizations that seek to grow their workforce with the talented graduates of Yale College, Yale Graduate School of Arts and Sciences, and Yale’s accomplished post-doctoral associates. Throughout his extensive career in both the private sector, and higher education, David has held leadership roles in strategic marketing, corporate relations, business development, institutional advancement, and operations management. Prior to joining Yale, David was director of institutional advancement services for Western Connecticut State University. Prior to that he was director of omni-channel marketing at boutique consulting firm, Peppers and Rogers Group, and was vice president of affinity marketing at Prudential Relocation Management. David earned a B.A. from the University of Rochester, and M.Ed. and Ed.S. degrees in higher education administration from the University of Florida. David also holds a professional certification in digital media marketing from New York University.

Elayne Mazzarella

Director of Career Services and Alumni Advising

Elayne has worked in Higher Education, specifically in Career Services for over 20 years and has been at Yale since 2003. Elayne is a general career advisor with a specialty in career exploration. Elayne works with undecided students, graduating seniors and is also a pre-law advisor. In addition, Elayne works with alumni throughout all stages of their career development process. Elayne is MBTI, Strong, SDS and Clifton StrengthsFinder certified.  Elayne holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Mathematics from Manhattanville College; a Masters of Arts Degree in Psychology and a Master’s of Education Degree in Counseling Psychology from Teacher’s College, Columbia University. She has held leadership positions on the executive boards of the Eastern Association of Colleges and Employers, the Metropolitan New York College Placement Officers Association, the New York State Career Counseling Association, the Colleges of Worcester Consortium, the Northeast Association of Pre-Law Advisors and the executive board of the Connecticut Career Counseling and Development Association.

Kristin McJunkins

Director, Health Professions Advising & STEM Connect

Kristin McJunkins oversees advising and counseling for undergraduates and alumni in Yale College and students in the Graduate School of Arts and Sciences interested in pursuing further education in the health and medical fields, and is also a general advisor for STEM fields. A longtime higher education professional, Kristin began her career handling event planning and facilities management at Widener University, where she obtained a B.S. in Business Administration and M.Ed. in Education. Transitioning to advising services at the University of Pennsylvania, she coordinated the peer/faculty advising program for 1,600 first year undergraduates as well as managed special services for first-year students and sophomores, in the College of Arts & Sciences. In 2004, Kristin joined Johns Hopkins University as a Pre-Health and Pre-Law Advisor, and since 2006 has worked at Yale University, serving as Director since 2009. Kristin is an active member of the National and Northeast Associations for Advisors in the Health Professions, NACADA (The Global Community for Academic Advising), and the National and Eastern Associations of Colleges and Employers.

Meredith Mira

Senior Associate Director

Meredith joined the Office of Career Strategy in the summer of 2013 and is excited to coach undergraduates, graduate students and postdocs, and Yale College and GSAS Alumni as they explore, articulate, and pursue their career goals. She also advises students and alumni interested in law school, graduate school, and business school. Meredith completed her doctoral degree at the Harvard Graduate School of Education, where her research focused on how high school students from a range of racial and socioeconomic backgrounds become aware of social inequality and motivated to work towards social change. She is also part of the international Leading Change Network, which is a wide-ranging group of educators, researchers, and practitioners engaged in strengthening community organizing efforts throughout the world. Meredith lives in New Haven with her husband; together they are learning a lot from their two young children, whose worlds keep getting more interesting by the day.

Hyun Ja Shin

Director, Graduate and Postdoctoral Career Services

Since October 2015, Hyun Ja has been dedicated to supporting graduate students in the Graduate School of Arts and Sciences and postdoctoral fellows engaged in the exploration of careers outside the academy. After completing her undergraduate degree from Princeton and her Ph.D in economics from Yale, she joined Charles River Associates as an economic consultant specializing in antitrust matters. She later transitioned to higher education, serving as a lead administrator for the Becker-Friedman Institute at the University of Chicago. Most recently at Yale, she acted as Associate Director of Business Initiatives at Yale Conferences & Events and as a business analyst in the Finance and Business Operations division, prior to joining the Office of Career Strategy. Hyun Ja lives in New Haven with her husband. They have two children in college, one of whom is a senior at Yale.

Stephanie J. L. Waite

Senior Associate Director

Stephanie joined the Office of Career Strategy in the spring of 2014 after serving as an Associate Director at Florida State University. She earned a B.A. in Philosophy and English from Flagler College and a M.S. in International Affairs and Conflict Studies from Florida State University. At Yale's Office of Career Strategy, Stephanie serves as Chair of the Career Strategy Committee, develops and implements office-wide programs, and supports students who are seeking internships and post-graduate employment in all industries, focusing on Government and Education advising and programming. She also serves as the Yale University coordinator for the Workforce Recruitment Program, supporting students with disabilities who desire to work in the federal government. With a mission to put students first, Stephanie guides Yalies as they identify the ways in which they plan to contribute to the world. Stephanie is a member of NACE, Yale University representative for the AAUW, and during her free time, she enjoys playing designer board games, attending group exercise classes, and traveling.

Derek Webster

Associate Director for the Arts, CGCC

After graduating from Yale as a film studies major, Derek spent a decade in Los Angeles as a literary manager and script consultant. He now organizes and expands the university’s arts career resources. Derek works with students and alumni to explore creative careers, which can include pursuing recruited or external job searches; reviewing submission and pitch materials; improving networking approaches; and helping Yalies to navigate the arts, entertainment or communications related industries. Currently enrolled in the Fairfield Creative Writing MFA program, when not adventuring with his wife and precious/precocious children, Derek is prone to the occasional burst of fiction, both literary and genre: