HWW Alumni Board Spotlight: Jamil Jorge

Meet Jamil Jorge, Education Director at FirstWorks in Providence, Rhode Island.

As a current member of HWW's alumni board, Jamil consults with the HWW PI and staff on future workshop designs and other programming. Jamil also attended HWW's Career Diversity Summer Workshop in 2018.

Jamil Jorge headshot
Jamil Jorge

Describe Humanities Without Walls in 1-2 sentences. 

HWW is a space of gathering, validation, learning, and community for graduate students who have much more to connect on than they may realize at first. It provides the resources—tools and people—to help move you toward something fulfilling.

What is one thing you learned at the HWW workshop that impacted your life?

On day one, I realized I wasn't alone. The Ph.D. process is lonely and can seem like a narrow pipeline in which your career options are limited. Yet, so many people want to do more, and many people that you get to me are doing more. It was incredibly validating to realize how many of us in the room wanted to explore new paths and were seeking guidance on how to do it from people that already done it. HWW reduced feelings of shame and anxiety and made me realize that I was not the only one who wanted to get a Ph.D. and consider careers outside of academia.

What advice do you have for workshop participants?

My most significant takeaway was to focus on skills and passions and less on research content when looking for non-academic careers. I would encourage participants to try and think more broadly about why they are in their Ph.D. programs and the bigger picture about how their knowledge and skills could contribute to an array of opportunities.I researched music, but I realized my broader passion for education and my ability to research and develop programs with DEI and belonging in mind. Aside from teaching college courses, I credit HWW with helping me find career paths as a training program coordinator in a science and engineering-based federal job and then directing an education department within an art nonprofit.

What was the most memorable part of the HWW workshop?

I did an informational interview with the founder of a literacy nonprofit called Open Books. Stacy validated many of my ideas about starting my own nonprofit and provided fantastic advice about how I might turn my research into community projects. Our scheduled 20-minute conversation lasted well over an hour and confirmed that what I imagined for myself was doable.