2012 Brandeis Segal Fellows
Aaron Chalek, Master’s in Public Policy Segal Fellow
Aaron Chalek is currently pursuing a joint MPP and MBA degree through the Heller School for Social Policy and Management at Brandeis University. With a focus on health care policy and management, Aaron's areas of interest include integrative health care delivery initiatives, payment and financing models, and health disparities. Before coming to Heller, Aaron worked as the Director of Operations at Progressive Business Leaders Network (PBLN), where he was responsible for the daily operations of the organization as well as the coordination of sector-specific working group initiatives. Prior to PBLN, Aaron served as an AmeriCorps VISTA member as a Development Coordinator at the United Teen Equality Center in Lowell, Massachusetts, a non-profit youth center which provides a safe haven for, and addresses the holistic development of "at-risk" and under-served youth. Aaron has also recently held internships at the Boston office of Senator John Kerry, the Massachusetts Joint Committee on Public Health, and the Disparities Action Network. Aaron received his Bachelor of Arts in International Relations and Government from Clark University in 2006. Aaron lives in Somerville, MA and is a big fan of Boston sports teams.
Jessica Christian, Undergraduate Segal Fellow
Jessica Christian, Brandeis class of 2013, was born and raised in a multicultural part of Brooklyn, New York. Jess finds joy in the simple things in life and strives to bring that joy to as many people as she can. And, she is passionate about education. As a Posse Scholar, Jess has learned to garner support from all niches on campus to create a network and community of people who can she rely on and vice versa. During her Brandeis career, Jess has been elected Senator of her graduating class and snapped photos for Brandeis’ independent newspaper “The Justice”. She has traveled to Bangalore, India under the Brandeis India Initiative Scholarship to work for MILANA, an AIDS/HIV NGO and published an article for the International Journal of Social Change and Service Learning. Jess now works closely with the Feminist Sexual Ethics Project initiatives. Jess wants to help as many people as she can in her life by addressing disparities to help minority communities achieve good health status, break statistics and stereotypes of lifestyle and disease, and represent those whose voice has been taken away from them by racial/ethnic and sexual inequalities.
Marisa Daniel, Master’s in Public Policy Segal Fellow
Marisa Daniel is pursuing a MPP and MBA with a concentration in Children, Youth and Families at the Heller School for Social Policy and Management at Brandeis University. Before coming to the program Marisa completed two years of AmeriCorps with Friends of the Children, a mentoring and tutoring program and City Year Boston, a national education nonprofit focused on eliminating the dropout crisis. While with City Year Marisa sat in on several round table and panels including the National Summit in Washington, D.C. and meeting with Governor Deval Patrick. Most recently Marisa has worked with the Growth and Development department at City Year Headquarters to develop a new site location in Orlando. Marisa has maintained a mentoring friendship with several of the students she worked with during City Year. In addition to her interest in Education Policy, Marisa has worked on several presidential campaigns and with Governor John Lynch's office. Marisa holds a B.A. in Political Science and Hispanic Studies from Boston College.
Beneva Davies, Undergraduate Segal Fellow
Beneva Davies, Brandeis class of 2013, is majoring in politics with a minor in economic legal studies. Beneva is a mentor, recruiter and coordinator for the local LACE (Language and Cultural Enrichment) program, a “big siblings” program for children who are newly immigrated or English Language Learners. She is also one of two student representatives to the Brandeis University Board of Trustees and in that role has encouraged greater diversity on the Board and made efforts to connect Board members with students. Her professional interests are in policy change, international justice and law.
David Duhalde, Master’s in Public Policy Segal Fellow
David Duhalde is pursuing a MPP with a concentration in poverty alleviation. Most recently, David worked as a public policy research associate for Massachusetts Nonprofit Network and community organizer with Mass Senior Action Council in Boston. Prior to that he was involved as a canvasser for the Ocean State Action Victory Campaign in Rhode Island, speaking to hundreds of voters about the four gubernatorial candidates’ positions on taxes. David has also worked as an intern for Service Employees International Union, Local 888. He earned his Bachelor of Arts in Comparative Government and East Asian Studies from Bowdoin College.
Gauris Frias, Undergraduate Segal Fellow
Gauris Frias, Brandeis class of 2013, is majoring in business and economics. Born and raised in the Bronx, New York, to Dominican parents, Gauris has always demonstrated an immense interest in the advancement of underrepresented ethnic minorities. His other passion is in the field of baseball. Last summer, he combined both his interests when he interned as a youth baseball coach at Harlem RBI (Reviving Baseball in Inner-Cities). At this non-profit organization, he taught inner-city kids reading comprehension and also coached a youth baseball team. Realizing the need for more ethnic diversity in baseball management, he aspires to work in this field and pave the way for more ethnic minorities who have an interest in pursuing similar career paths.
Jessie Stettin, Undergraduate Segal Fellow
Jessie Stettin, Brandeis class of 2013, is studying business and environmental science with the intention of using the Business tools he learns in class to start a business in the “green sector”. Already demonstrating his ambition and entrepreneurial personality, Jessie successfully created an on campus bike-rental program for students and expanded the already existing daily-rental program. One of his specific interests within the environmental field lies in sustainable agriculture, which led him to his most recent summer internship with the Queens County Farm located in his hometown of Queens, N.Y. Through hands-on farming experience, Jessie learned specific organic farming practices as well as the marketing and sales that goes along with running an agricultural organization. Jessie’s newest non-academic interest is in traveling and living in different cultures. Jessie was a 2011 recipient of the Benjamin A. Gilman International Scholarship which allowed him to study art history and film in Amsterdam. In his spare time, Jessie enjoys playing basketball and running.
Paul Vancea, Undergraduate Segal Fellow
Paul Vancea, Brandeis class of 2014, is majoring in business, economics, and film studies. Paul moved to the United States from Romania with his family when he was 14. In high school, Paul was MVP of his football, wrestling and track teams while working full-time with his family’s business and maintaining a nearly perfect GPA. In his freshman year at Brandeis, Paul and a roommate initiated a student health and fitness club. In their first event, the club hosted a panel of experts to discuss various aspects of healthy lifestyles, i.e., fitness, nutrition, sleep and stress management. In addition, in his sophomore year, Paul and another roommate started an international media production company through which he hopes to use his filmmaking skills, passion for health, and economics/business knowledge to promote positive actions, and socially conscious business models. This summer Paul plans to intern with an organization that will broaden his knowledge of the increasingly globalized markets.