Jack Washington, Two-Time Former Hanoverian, University of Pennsylvania
In brief, what was your role at Hanover?
I was a Research Associate in the Education Practices on a team that supports both higher education and K-12 partners. I operated as a generalist, meaning that I spent my time on a variety of tasks such as collecting and analyzing data, reviewing scholarly literature, and interviewing stakeholders. I then used this information to generate reports that answer questions from school districts and institutions of higher education about issues of operations, policy, management, and curriculum. As our clients have many needs, RAs develop foundational knowledge across a variety of content areas. For example, I wrote reports to help school districts create cultural awareness training programs, benchmarked a large state university’s research performance against 60 of its peers, and helped a non-profit organization determine the best way to structure web development teams in higher education.
Why did you decide to work at Hanover?
For context, between my junior and senior years at Penn, I was an intern with the 2014 class of research interns. I returned to Hanover because I enjoyed the work, the people, and the location during my internship last summer. First, it is a rare experience to be able to work in as interesting a field as education research, building a broad set of skills and knowledge, right after graduating from college. Additionally, I have found my coworkers to be friendly, knowledgeable, and approachable. It doesn’t hurt that Hanover is a very young company, creating a built-in social group for those moving from other parts of the country. Finally, the offices are located in Arlington, Virginia, a ring city outside of Washington, D.C. This location affords employees the opportunity to work and live in a vibrant environment with a lot of activities to enjoy on nights and weekends.
In your opinion, what sets Hanover apart from other organizations?
Hanover is a growing company and opportunities for advancement abound. During my internship last summer, the company employed somewhere between 150 and 200 people. Now, that figure has eclipsed 300. That means that it is an excellent place not only to begin, but to grow, a career. There is no bottleneck effect on the corporate ladder. For instance, my team’s manager recently mentioned that there are no caps on the number of promotions given during our upcoming performance review cycle. Anyone that has demonstrated the skills and achievements necessary to advance in position will be eligible for promotion. That is an experience that I believe is hard to come by at larger firms.
What was your favorite part of your job/the company?
I enjoyed the opportunity to learn new skills. For instance, one project required me to learn some elementary Visual Basic to analyze a large data set. That is a skill I hope to improve through future work and take with me to graduate studies and beyond. What’s more, the way I learned that skill speaks to the company culture. A coworker took some time out of his day to walk me through the steps, and I will be thanking him by buying him a beer at a restaurant week dinner that coworkers and I will be attending together.