Cornell University
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Cornell University

Cornell alumni helped Ben Feldman ’22 find his passion

College: Arts & Sciences
Major: International development, governance, and society (College Scholar Program)
Hometown: Philadelphia, Pennsylvania

A virtual Cornell Career Services networking event changed the trajectory of Ben Feldman’s ’22 post-graduation plans.

In the summer after his second year, Feldman was considering two different paths, law school or working in government, when he attended two Cornell Career Services networking events. “The lawyers on the Zoom call encouraged me to consider whether I really wanted to do law — or whether I viewed it merely as a stepping stone. Because of these events, I realized that I didn’t want to go to law school.”

That summer, Feldman also had the opportunity to work as a research assistant for Sarah Kreps, the John L. Wetherill Professor in the Department of Government.

“Cornell has taught me how to research, write and think,” Feldman says. “The process of writing a thesis paper was transformative. And extracurricular opportunities (e.g., speech and debate) have helped me ace interviews and connect with employers and co-workers.”

“The experience was invaluable and remains the best job I’ve ever had,” Feldman says. “It was during this summer that I decided to pursue my passions: government and international affairs.”

The pursuit of his passion has been fruitful for Feldman. After graduation, he plans to work as a James C. Gaither Junior Fellow at the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace (CEIP) in Washington, D.C. He’ll be working as a research assistant for a senior fellow in the Carnegie Democracy, Conflict, and Governance program.

Feldman says he’s grateful to have had a network of Cornellians with whom to connect throughout the fellowship process.

“One alumnus who did the same James C. Gaither Junior Fellowship helped me with mock interviews, gave me advice on the process, and connected me with other Junior Fellows who were able to answer further questions,” Feldman says.

Career Services were also beneficial, helping Feldman improve his resume or cover letter as he applied for jobs and internships like the James C. Gaither Junior Fellowship.

Feldman also says the academic rigor of the classroom at Cornell has trained him to produce outstanding quality products.

“Cornell has taught me how to research, write and think,” Feldman says. “The process of writing a thesis paper was transformative. And extracurricular opportunities (e.g., speech and debate) have helped me ace interviews and connect with employers and co-workers.”

Feldman said he plans to return to Ithaca for Homecoming and Reunion, as well as seek out an alumni chapter in Washington, D.C.

Read more about Feldman’s accomplishments at Cornell.

Cornell’s Class of 2022 has a great deal to be proud of: They have worked hard to forge their futures and make their mark, all the while finding success and demonstrating great resolve through a host of challenges, including the historic adversity of pursing their degrees during a pandemic.

Learn more about this incredible group of Cornellians.

Written by Jesse Osbourne
Strategic Communications at Cornell University

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Cornell’s mission is to discover, preserve and disseminate knowledge, to educate the next generation of global citizens, and to promote a culture of broad inquiry throughout and beyond the Cornell community.

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