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ECSF 1999

Wendi Adelson '01

Wendi competed in the Red Hills Triathlon on April 5, 2008, to raise money to fund ALS research.

Internship with Madres del Plaza de Mayo, Buenos Aires, Argentina
Hometown: Coral Springs, FL

Since her graduation from Brandeis, Wendi has been a junior fellow at the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace, received a Master's of Philosophy on a Gates Scholarship from the University of Cambridge (UK) and a full tuition scholarship at University of Miami School of Law. She is currently a humanitarian immigration lawyer with the Center for The Advancement of Human Rights at Florida State University where she represents victims of trafficking and other violent crimes, asylum seekers, and unaccompanied immigrant children. In 2009 Wendi attended Florida's first Summit meeting on human trafficking to present her findings (based on interviews with legal service, social service, and shelters that assist formerly trafficked persons) to Florida's statewide task force on human trafficking. Beginning this August, Wendi will be a Clinical Professor at FSU. During her professorship, Wendy will be creating, directing and teaching a new Medical-Legal Partnership program between the law school, the medical school, and a local health clinic. Wendi also maintains a blog which highlights the law as it impacts human trafficking and exploitation of individuals. In addition to working, Wendi enjoys spending time with her two sons.

Tamara with her son, Dror Avinoam

Tamara Beliak Neumeier '00
Internship with Middle East Non-Violence and Democracy, East Jerusalem and Bat Shalom, West Jerusalem, Israel
Hometown: Los Angeles, CA

After graduation Tamara became a teacher, which led her to realize that teaching was not just about a given subject, but also about the belief that one way to change the future is to change the values taught within a community. Tamara and her husband (married in 2002) have three children - Dror Avinoam, Menahem Tuvia and Yakir Tzion. This fall Tamara will be teaching Bible at Ramaz Day School. In addition to teaching, Tamara is in the process of receiving a Ph.D from Yeshiva University. Currently, Tamara is concluding her research and beginning to write her dissertation "Teacher Planning: Biblical Texts, Gender and the Young Adolescent."

Lauren Elson '00
Internship with Baatu Askan Wi (The Voice of the Tribes) in Banjul, Gambia, and Cotton Tree Heritage Theater, Gambia Chapter in Serrekunda, Gambia
Hometown: Thousand Oaks, CA

Lauren graduated from medical school at Tufts in May 2005. Adding to her medical school demands, Lauren worked for four years with Rainbow Tribe, a lively dance troupe bridging cultural differences, performing hip-hop, break-dance, street funk, and lyrical and swing-style jazz. As part of her medical school training in 2004-5, Lauren preformed interesting rotations including work in a rural community clinic in Nicaragua and acupuncture training in China. She served as Chief Resident of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation at New York-Presbyterian Hospital and did a fellowship at Stanford in 2009. Lauren also served as the medical staff for Racing the Deserts “4 Desert Race”. As a volunteer, Lauren traveled to Chile to assist with a race last March and will be traveling to the Sahara desert to work on the race there in October. Lauren was recently appointed to a new position as medical staff in the Spaulding/Wellesley clinic and will be returning to Boston.

Keren Ghitis '01
Internship with The Soros Media Center, Sarajevo, Bosnia
Hometown: Herzlia, Israel

Keren went back to Israel following Brandeis to work for Keshev, an association that monitors Israeli media reporting on the Palestinian conflict. Soon after her return, however, "the second Intifada broke out, and we moved to Oaxaca, Mexico, which is a magical place." There Keren worked with a microfinance organization that provided credit schemes to indigenous women. On moving again, this time to the UK, Keren pursued her Master's in International Development at the Institute of Development Studies at Sussex University. Her studies connected her with the Participation Group, which sent her to the Niger Delta to use theater to help communities struggling with oil companies and the government for their economic rights. Today Keren works for the Panos Institute, an NGO at which she serves as the Oral Testimony Programme Officer, documenting individual voices in conflict areas. "The work is intense since there's a lot of traveling -- in the last six months I've traveled to Ethiopia, Kenya, and Mozambique." Most recently, Keren was in Georgia, documenting the life stories of Internally Displaced People.

Karen Hovav '00
Internship with GRENED, Grenada
Hometown: Upland, CA

Karen spent a year working as a mental health counselor at a psychiatric hospital after graduation, then moved to Israel. She graduated in May 2005 from medical school at the Sackler School of Medicine at Tel Aviv University. With the desire to ultimately attain an American certification, she is nearing completion of her residency in pediatrics in California. "It's been a wonderful experience," Karen writes. "I'm continually inspired by the strength these children show when confronting some of life's greatest hardships."

Devika Mahadevan '00
Internship with United Nations Development Fund for Women, Beijing, China
Hometown: Bombay, India

After graduating from Brandeis in 2000, Devika spent one year working for an NGO in Zimbabwe, and the following year pursuing a Master's in Development Studies from the London School of Economics. She then returned to Bombay and started working for an NGO called SPARC, which works on housing and infrastructure issues for the urban poor. In January 2005, Devika married an architect named Kapil in Bombay, with several former ECSFs in attendance! Since March 2006, Devika has been working as the Chief Executive of an NGO called Mobile Crèches, which supports the education of children living on construction sites in Mumbai. For a video highlighting the organization's work, click here.