The How to Change Careers series of events started in 2017 and is now all online. Each time I invite 3-4 career changers to talk about finding their path to a fulfilling career.
In this month's edition, How to Change Careers to Increase Democracy, I talked to Hassan El-Tayyab, Symonne Singleton, and Roberto A. Lopez about working to solve some of the most urgent and important issues of our time: criminal justice reform, war in the Middle East, and immigrants' rights.
- How did they find the courage to make the change?
- What is it like to blend career and activism?
- How do they stay motivated?
- What do they think of this moment in time?
- And how did they know it was time to put their career in service of a higher Purpose?
Watch the video for an in-depth conversation on what is important in life, career, and in the world.
Resources mentioned in the talk
About the Panelists of How to Change Careers to Increase Democracy
SYMONNE SINGLETON is a user centered Software Engineer interested in the intersection of criminal justice reform and technology. She currently works at Code for America on the Clear My Record team, where she builds technology and collaborates with governments to implement automated record clearance. Prior to engineering, Symonne earned her B.A. in the History of US Social Justice Movements from Duke University.
HASSAN EL-TAYYAB is the lead lobbyist on Middle East policy for Friends Committee on National Legislation (FCNL). He is also responsible for representing FCNL with the various coalitions that work on these issues. Prior to joining FCNL in August 2019, he was co-director of the national advocacy group Just Foreign Policy, where he led their lobbying work to advance a more progressive foreign policy in the Middle East and Latin America. He played a major role in the successful passage of the War Powers Resolution to end US military aid to the Saudi-UAE coalition’s war in Yemen.
Hassan's passion for foreign affairs is rooted in his desire to make life better for people in the Middle East, including his extended family in Jordan. He is convinced that advancing a more peaceful and diplomacy-based foreign policy in the Middle East is critical, not only for the family he loves, but for peace and stability worldwide. His writings and commentaries have been featured in numerous news outlets, including BBC World News, The Hill, Al Jazeera, The Huffington Post, The Intercept, and more. Hassan holds a B.A. in Political Science from the University of Rhode Island.
ROBERTO ALEJANDRO LOPEZ is a Community Outreach Coordinator in the Racial and Economic Justice program at the Texas Civil Rights Project (TCRP). He is based in Texas’ Rio Grande Valley (RGV) situated along the Southern Border. As an outreach coordinator, Roberto leads the REJ program’s advocacy work for RGV landowners affected by border wall construction and for asylum seekers affected by the Trump administration’s ever shifting anti-immigrant and anti-asylum policies.
In the past year, his work has centered on a series of campaigns to end the ongoing expulsions of immigrant children, Border Patrol detention conditions, and the “Remain in Mexico” program. Through these campaigns, he has worked to coordinate across national, state and local partners to coordinate story-telling and collective actions for immigrant families, and to activate members of Congress to spur forth oversight and investigation into immigration policies in South Texas. Prior to his work at TCRP Roberto was a high-school math teacher. He studied engineering at Cornell University, and is presently an aspiring human-rights attorney.Roberto is a proud native of the Rio Grande Valley, where he currently lives in McAllen, TX.
Psst: if you are ready to change careers, check out the Group Program to Change Careers - we start at the end of January.