The Nelson A. Rockefeller Center for Public Policy and the Social Sciences

Class of 2016

Josh Tupler ’16 Reflects on His Experience with RGLP

Current Rockefeller Global Leadership Program (RGLP) Student Program Assistant, Soham Basu '20 interviewed alum Josh Tupler ’16 about his RGLP experience. RGLP seeks to help participants build their intercultural leadership competencies. Tupler initially got involved with RGLP because he was interested in traveling abroad and saw this program as an excellent opportunity to prepare for this experience. Through the lessons and practical seminars, RGLP provided Tupler with the resources and skills to thrive on the Government Foreign Study Program at the London School of Economics and Political Science. Tupler reflects on the impact of his RGLP experience at Dartmouth.

Soham Basu (SB): How did your perception of the program differ from its reality?

Josh Tupler (JT): I went in expecting a weekly dinner meeting arrangement that a lot of other on-campus activities had, but I came out very surprised at the level of engagement and interaction with speakers. From giving us their emails and cell phone numbers to taking an active interest in our academic lives and careers, it exceeded any expectations that I had.

Class of 2016 Rockefeller Leadership Fellows

Front Row (Left to right): Inviolata S. Chami, Lauren K. Martin, Julia Pomerantz (RLF Program Assistant), Soyeun Yang, Cecelia Shao

Second Row (Left to right): Sadhana Hall (Deputy Director), Grace M. Benjamin, Lauren S. Buchanan, Juhi Kalra, Feyaad Allie, Corey D. Stock*, Rui Zhang, Zonia R. Moore, Tatyana Bills (Program Officer)

Third Row (Left to right): Patrick Saylor^, Shaitalya S. Vellanki, William Kerin, Andrew Zhu, Jordyn N. Turner, Spencer B. Chu, Elijah T. Soko

Back Row (Left to right): Tucker E. Oddleifson, Austin B. Boral, Steven R. Povich, Ramtin Rahmani, Anthony R. Lafontant, Joshua D. Cox, Anne M. Smith

* Auditing the program.

^ Withdrew from the program.


Karen Wen '16 attends Hominis 2016 in Havana, Cuba

The opportunity to attend the Hominis 2016 conference in Havana, Cuba, was honestly the best way I could have possibly ended my Dartmouth career. The conference, which focused on La Psicología potenciando el bienestar humano (psychology enhancing human welfare), sat at the confluence of several of my interests that have accumulated over the past four years: my interest in global public health, my academic coursework as a psychology major, my magnetism toward Latin America, and my desire to immerse myself in new cultures. I learned an enormous amount not only from attending the conference but also by physically being in Cuba at this time of enormous flux for the country. To say that the experience was a good one risks making an understatement—it was phenomenal.

Nana Adjeiwaa-Manu ’16 Honors Thesis: Grieving for the Ungrievable

Nana Adjeiwaa-Manu ’16 spent over a year developing her thesis Grieving for the Ungrievable: Support Systems Among Bereaved Ghanaians in the United States. “I’m looking at how support systems and ethnic identity work together to shape how Ghanaians grieve in the United States,” Nana says.

She attended a traditional Ghanaian funeral for her uncle’s wife during sophomore year, inspiring her interest in Ghanaian grief literature. Nana, the daughter of Ghanaian immigrants, explains that “in Ghanaian culture we mourn very publicly through dance, through music, and through elaborate costumes. It’s more or less a tradition of celebration, like a party--and I wanted to understand why Ghanaians mourn in this peculiar way.”

Using interviews from 26 Ghanaian immigrant adults, youth, and children of immigrants born in the US, Nana says she is studying “the positive and negative aspects of community building as they grieve.” She explains that people turn to all kinds of sources as coping mechanisms, noting that, in the absence of religion, many turn to artistic expression.

The Rockefeller Center's Annual Senior BBQ

Each year Rocky uses its annual tradition of a spring BBQ to celebrate its wonderful seniors, many of whom have spent a significant portion of their Dartmouth time at the Center. Many members of the Class of 2016 turned out for this year’s feast on May 31st under the Rocky overhang. Even the weather cooperated and participants were able to enjoy some fabulous spring weather along with great food, music, and fellowship with friends and staff from the Center.

Counter-Radicalization Strategy Thesis Research

Traveling to the Stanford Research Conference was an extremely rewarding experience. The conference began on Friday April 15 with an opening ceremony and remarks from the organizers of the conference who spoke about the importance of research and developing communities of research as undergraduates. Throughout the course of the conference there were a series of professor plenaries with various Stanford professors who spoke about topics ranging from healthcare and labor economics to chemistry and physics. All of these sessions were valuable in exposing me to different types of research and stories of how these researching became interested in research. 

Recognizing Rockefeller Center Student Program Assistant: Latrell Williams ‘16

Latrell Williams ’16 has been a co-facilitator of the Student Discussion Group VoxMasters now for two terms. However, he’s been participating in the group since his freshman year. “This is a nice job for something I like to go to anyways,” says Latrell. His favorite part of the job is helping people with their public speaking skills. “Recently we’ve had a lot of graduate students in the STEM field interested in improving their public speaking. In just a few months, they’ve improved a lot,” Latrell says. “It’s nice to see that VoxMasters has an impact.” 

“I can always count on Latrell to do exactly what he says he’ll do,” says supervisor Vincent Mack. “Latrell takes his responsibilities seriously, and never has to be corrected twice, or repeatedly asks to complete a task. I appreciate working with Latrell for his dependability, willingness to learn in his role, and integrity demonstrated in doing what he says.”

Recognizing Rockefeller Center Student Program Assistant: Jing Li ’16

Jing Li ’16 has worked at the Rockefeller Center since her sophomore spring as a Student Program Assistant for Student Workshops.  Her first experience with Rocky was as a participant in the Management and Leadership Development Program, which she liked so much that she wanted to get involved with Rocky at a deeper level.  She consequently applied for this position and was hired.

As Jing explains it, the Student Workshops program “invites guest speakers who come in and run a workshop that’s leadership-oriented or career-oriented,” catered to students who wish to develop their professional capacities.  Her favorite workshop is the Etiquette Dinner, which happens every fall and spring. Robert Shutt, a consultant with RA Solutions, leads the group through the art of business dining over a three course meal catered by the Hanover Inn. “Shine while you dine,” says Shutt. Manners matter and courtesy counts and never forget that the meal is not the most important part of the encounter.

Recognizing Rockefeller Center Student Program Assistant: Sarah Ogren ‘16

Sarah Ogren ’16 is the student program assistant for the Rockefeller Center's Student Mini-Grants, leading a biweekly committee of other student program assistants through discussions on student funding proposals to attend conferences and hold campus events. “I appreciate the opportunity to lead a committee that makes an impact on campus,” Sarah says.  “Mini-Grants supports campus events and allows students to attend conferences that help people learn more about their passions.”

Prior to her work with Student Mini-Grants, Sarah worked for the Rockefeller Center as the VoxMasters student program assistant for two years.  She says that she has served in a facilitator role for both jobs, even though they are very different programs.  “VoxMasters is about helping individuals become better at public speaking, whereas in Mini-Grants I lead the committee to decide on applications.” 

Leadership and the Paradox of Plenty

This week's session was led by Professor Andrew Samwick, who currently serves as both the Director of the Rockefeller Center and the Sandra and Arthur Irving Professor of Economics at Dartmouth College. Outside of Dartmouth, he currently serves as a Research Associate of the National Bureau of Economic Research, and in 2003 and 2004, he was the chief economist on the staff of the President’s Council of Economic Advisers. Professor Samwick graduated summa cum laude in economics from Harvard College and received his PhD from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.

Perhaps unsurprisingly, Professor Samwick's session centered on an economics concept, the "natural resource curse." The term refers to the "paradox of plenty," in which countries with more natural resources do not necessarily experience greater economic growth. Professor Samwick applied the concept to leadership, prompting the Rockefeller Leadership Fellows to question the vast disparity of resources in the world and how countries operate in environments of scarcity - and then, most importantly, how one might avoid the natural resource curse when in a leadership role.


The Nelson A. Rockefeller Center for Public Policy and the Social Sciences