Don Kjelleren, Director
As Director of the ’68 Center for Career Exploration, there’s nothing more satisfying than fulfilling our mission to “empower students to explore, define and achieve their post-graduate goals.” In my own career, I’ve worked in the consumer food, marketing, and advertising sectors, and earned an MBA from the University of Pittsburgh’s Katz Graduate school of Management, and a BA in Economics and Political Science from Dickinson College. Prior to Williams, I was the Director of Professional and Career Development at Middlebury College. At Williams, I believe there are countless career exploration opportunities for every student of every major and interest, and I feel extraordinarily privileged to lead a ’68 Center for Career Exploration team that affirms and accelerates all students’ aspirations. When I’m not in the office, you’ll almost certainly find me enjoying a wide range of outdoor passions in the Berkshires, the Green Mountains, the American Southwest, or maybe even in the Galapagos.
Our Advising Team
Rebecca Counter, MSEd, PgCert, Associate Director, Director of Science and Health Professions Advising
As the Director of Science and Health Professions Advising, I work closely with our team to support students and alumni through all stages of their journeys towards dynamic career paths in health and science fields – from exploration to preparation and beyond.
Prior to Williams, I was a health professions specialist at Amherst College. I hold a BA from Cornell University, an MSEd from the University of Pennsylvania, and a PgCert in Science Communication and Public Engagement from the University of Edinburgh.
Some topics in which I am particularly interested include global health issues, health disparities, patient advocacy, healthcare, and biomedical design, narrative medicine, the intersection between art and science, and health and science communication. In my free time, I enjoy reading fiction, listening to music, traveling, writing, and rock climbing.
As a practicing physician, I have a unique perspective on the health professions. A vast array of healthcare careers exist, many of which you may be unaware of. I look forward to exploring with you traditional and less well-known careers in the field, from MD to NP and things you’ve never heard of. Of special interest to me is the concept of work-life balance – a topic I wish I had thought more about when planning my career in medicine. I am a pathologist at SVMC in Bennington and a Williams alum. I live in Williamstown with my family and two crazy chocolate Labradors.
Robin Meyer, Associate Director/Director of Employer Relations
As the advisor for business careers, I like to remind students there’s more to the field than just finance and consulting. Business is a big umbrella, and beneath that general title, you’ll find opportunities for human resources, sales, operations, market research, real estate, entrepreneurship and more. In addition to my advising duties, I run a robust, on-campus recruiting program that brings more than 150 employers to Williams each year, including hiring managers from business, government, nonprofits, and education. When I’m not at the ’68 Center for Career Exploration, you’ll find me enjoying the beauty of the Berkshires, knitting, playing my ukulele, walking an occasional marathon, and traveling to faraway places like Machu Picchu.
Anthony Pernell-McGee, Associate Director/Director of Inclusive Career Exploration
As a Career Facilitator, I design and implement a curriculum of programs for Careers with Social Impact (CSI) to provide Ephs with a broad spectrum of exploration experiences to assist them to explore, define, and achieve their career interests and passions. I serve as the primary ’68 Center liaison for the identity-based populations to tailor specific career needs of a diverse and inclusive community. I use a collaborative model working with internal and external college stakeholders to ensure all programming is robust and inclusive. Also, I am the pre-law advisor for Williams College and provide students who are interested in attending law school with holistic advising based on years of experience as an attorney. I am an avid cyclist, play tennis and an amateur photographer. While working at Bates College, I picked up cross country skiing and look forward to exploring the trails in the Berkshires.
Kristen McCormack, Assistant Director, Arts, Communications & Technology
I advise students and create innovative programs for students interested in pursuing careers in the arts, communications, and technology. I’m excited to help you explore the many creative paths one could take! It’s important to experience diverse jobs and internships during your time at Williams, and I look forward to helping you find those opportunities. Outside of the ’68 Center for Career Exploration, I enjoy reading, spending time with my family, and playing with Blaze, my English black lab.
Tonio Palmer, Entrepreneur-in-Residence
I work with students to help them develop their ideas about starting a business, launch a social impact project or learn more about the start-up community. To this role, I bring my passion for new ideas, my own entrepreneurial experiences, and formal business training of an MBA/MA in International Affairs from UPenn’s Wharton School and Lauder Institute. Having lived and worked in Germany and Brazil, I hope to see some projects with an international scope! As an outdoor enthusiast and tennis coach, I enjoy running the Appalachian Trail and look forward to running the sections around Williamstown.
I support the beginning of the career discovery journey for first- and second-year students at Williams, helping students engage with the ’68 Center and start to explore connections among their interests, strengths, skills, and values. The career development process is reflective and iterative, and the first two years at Williams are a great time to learn about career fields as well as “try on” experiences to learn more about what you are curious about and how you want to engage with the world. I also advise and create opportunities for learning for students interested in pursuing careers and graduate study in Education and I serve as the liaison at the ’68 Center for international students. I’m a social scientist at heart, and I’ve spent my career thus far understanding how and why people and institutions make decisions, first as a political scientist and now as a career advisor! Outside of the office, I enjoy spending time outdoors with my family and dog and look forward to exploring all of the local trails; I recently ran a mountain marathon in Wales (where my family is from) and I’m working up the courage to sign up for a 50k.
Our Resource Team
Leigh Sylvia, Associate Director/Director of Mentoring & User Experience
I oversee Williams’ mentorship program, EphLink, which connects current students with alumni mentors. I also work with seniors on real-world transitional preparation so they can make the most of their first employment experiences. During my time in higher ed career services, I’ve worked with students and alumni from a variety of backgrounds, most recently at Columbia University and New York Institute of Technology. Prior to higher ed, I worked in advertising and marketing. When I’m not at work, you can find me enjoying the beauty of the Berkshires, spending lots of social time with my family and friends, and heading out for the occasional “jog” (more like fast walking).
Dawn M. Dellea, Manager of Alumni & Parent Engagement Programs
I manage the ’68 Center for Career Exploration programs that connect students with alumni and parents. Are you interested in a Winter Study internship? Looking for internship funding? Curious about developing a business? Looking to connect with alumni and parents in your industry to get advice? Contact me! I’ve worked at Williams for 20 years and love coming to my job every day. In addition to my job at the ’68 Center for Career Exploration, community service is important to me. I’m the board president of Elder Services of Berkshire County Inc., a member of the Homebuyer Selection Committee for Central Berkshire Habitat for Humanity and a member of the Berkshire Community College Alumni Association Board of Directors. I also love going to the theater and Tanglewood.
I’m responsible for strategically targeting and attracting a more diverse range of alumni employers to visit and recruit on campus. Along with my role in Employer Relations, I also market all of the ’68 Center for Career Exploration’s programs, events, and opportunities to students, faculty, and staff. I have a Bachelor’s Degree in Event Management and an MBA, both from Johnson & Wales University. Prior to Williams, I worked in the Experiential Education & Career Services department at Johnson & Wales University for about 3 years. When I’m not here at Williams, you can find me enjoying the beautiful Berkshires or spending time with my family and friends!
Allisa Miller, Science & Health Professions Coordinator
As the Science and Health Professions Coordinator, I am responsible for providing administrative support to the program’s Director and Advising staff in serving the needs of the students and alumni, who are seeking academic advice and guidance on application processes. In addition, I will serve as the liaison to Williams’ Science departments and work closely with associated student groups to implement innovative programming for students and alumni. Most recently, I was the Head Athletic Trainer at Burr and Burton Academy in Manchester, VT where I provided medical coverage for the various sports teams. When I’m not working, I enjoy spending time with family, hiking with my dogs and attending sports events.
Mackenzie Haig-Tatro, Career Center Coordinator & Employer Relations Assistant
As the Career Center Coordinator & Employer Relations Assistant, I take pride in fostering relationships for the ’68 Center with students, alumni, and employers while also handling administrative work for the ’68 Center staff. I enjoy creating a warm and welcoming environment for the many guests that visit Mears House. I also oversee the application and fund disbursement process for the Career Access Fund. Various members of my family have worked for, and attended, Williams over the past forty years, so I feel right at home here. When not at work I enjoy spending time with my three energetic young boys exploring the many wonders of the Berkshires. I have a passion for fashion, which was enhanced by my bachelor’s degree in Fashion Merchandising. I am also a competitive runner, and I am working towards my goal of qualifying for the Boston Marathon!