You’ll advance your aspirations by being part of a community of people who help each other reach their goals. We assemble students who bring a strong set of values to our community, and the Yale SOM experience is designed to help each of them hone and strengthen their sense of individual purpose. Being part of a community with this orientation serves as training for cultivating healthy communities in organizations of all sorts and scales.
Each year, students, faculty, staff, and alumni come together to raise funds that enable students to do internships nonprofit, governmental, and other social impact organizations.
In the school's second year of operation, one of its pioneering students, Merle Duskin Kailas ’79, wanted to do an internship with a mission-oriented organization, but couldn't afford to take the whole summer without pay. Her classmates rallied around her—and started a tradition that's going strong 40 years later.
Solving challenges together
Students at Yale SOM can work on big challenges—like poverty, homelessness, health equity, and racial justice—by participating in one of the school’s clubs, forums, or courses.
As the world shuddered and ground to a halt in the early phases of the COVID-19 pandemic, Yale SOM students, faculty, staff, and alumni collaborated on ways to help. They volunteered with local and state governments. They worked with New Haven nonprofits. They furthered research into the best ways to respond to the crisis. And they led all kinds of organizations with compassion and rigor.
Jane Mendillo ’84 and Ralph Earle ’84 met at Yale SOM. They married two years after graduation, cementing a personal and professional partnership that has continued for decades.
They made decisions together, seeking to maximize the welfare of the family unit as much as their individual lives. The result was two careers that circled each other like the arms of a double helix. Mendillo took an investment position with the Harvard Management Company. Earle started in consulting and then went into government to help Massachusetts develop its first recycling program. Mendillo took a position as the head of the Wellesley endowment and then became CEO of Harvard Management Company, the largest endowment in the country. Earle started a venture capital company specializing in early-stage clean energy companies.
Through these twists and turns, the couple had many, many discussions over dinners, long drives, any other opportunity to be together about career opportunities, investments, leadership quandaries, and whether they were on track for the life together that they wanted. The sum of the pair ended up greater than either part alone.
I’m so grateful for those conversations at our dining table. Because of our partnership, and the mutual respect embodied in it, there has always been a way to figure out, ‘Is this a decision that I respect for myself, for us as a family, or for my organization? Is it the right thing to do?’
As one of her assignments in the Mastering Influence and Persuasion course, Ana Victoria Gil ’21 was tasked with making a big ask for something she didn’t expect to receive. She decided to ask the professor, Zoe Chance, for a unique opportunity.