EPSM Alumnus Frederick Zindell is currently working in customer service and sales for a social enterprise called IceStone, which manufactures countertops out of recycled glass and concrete. He credits Milano for his honed skills in understanding and communicating about complex systems. Questions for Frederick? You can reach him by email.

Frederick ZindellWhen did you choose the EPSM program? Was it related to the career you envisioned for yourself?

I took five years after undergrad to decide to go back to school. There wasn’t a clear career for me, but I knew I needed to pursue something that I was passionate about. My dream job when I was a kid was to become a meteorologist, I was obsessed with tornadoes, and that interest stuck with me into adulthood. I came across an article that talked about tornado alley, and how it was shifting east, and how cities like Atlanta, and Charlotte need to start making their cities more resilient as they face stronger storms due to climate change. This was when I chose the EPSM program. I knew it was going to give me the skills and understanding I needed to enter the work force as a change agent.

What was the best thing about the EPSM program? What advantages does the degree give you?

The best thing about this program was the people in it. I have never been around such a diverse group of people who brought their experience, passion, and creativity to every class discussion. It is such a supportive community.

I feel that with this degree you can go anywhere with it. It isn’t so focused on one thing, so students have the flexibility to enter different sectors post graduation. 

What advice would you give new students to help them make the most of their time here?

Get involved. If you have an idea, or want to do something around campus, talk to people about it, and you will definitely be pointed in the right direction.

Were you very involved while a student, inside or outside of campus? What projects stick out in your mind? What benefit did your involvement have?

  • I was the communications director of the Sustainable Cities Club (SCC)
  • I was part of a large network of people who advocated for The New School to divest from fossil fuels
  • In conjunction with fellow board members of SCC, we spearheaded the Choices conference, which brought local leaders together to talk about sustainability within different industries. We had people from fashion, construction, food, and the hotel industry

Because I was involved, I am able to showcase leadership and management skills while looking for jobs.

Tell us about what you’re working on now! How did your experience at Milano prepare you for your work and projects?

Right now, I am working in customer service and sales for a social enterprise called IceStone. IceStone manufactures countertops out of recycled glass and concrete. Milano prepared me for this role by helping me understand complex systems, which has translated into me being able to effectively communicate the manufacturing process when interacting with our customers.