2016 Speed Networking VIP Series: Q&A with MaryRose Mazzola, Boston Women’s Workforce Council

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MaryRose Mazzola currently serves as the Executive Director of the Boston Women’s Workforce Council, a public-private partnership between the City of Boston, Simmons College School of Management, and over 135 companies in the greater Boston area dedicated to closing the gender pay gap. Prior to joining the Council, MaryRose conducted research for the Harvard Kennedy School Women and Public Policy Program, and served as Communications and Field Director to Boston City Council President Michelle Wu’s successful reelection campaign last fall.

She is a 2015 graduate of the Harvard Kennedy School, where she earned her Master in Public Policy, and graduated summa cum laude from the Merrimack College Honors Program in 2012 with dual degrees in Political Science and French. We asked MaryRose some questions before Net Impact Boston’s 9th Annual Speed Networking Event next week.

Could you tell us about a time you took a chance and it paid off?

When I was a senior in college, I was convinced I was heading straight to Washington, D.C. to attend grad school and work part-time on Capitol Hill, where I had a job offer waiting. Then, a few months before graduation, I was offered a job as Campaign Manager for a local State Senate race. It was a rare offer for a 21-year- old, and it meant I would have to work crazy hours as a college senior and delay grad school for the time being. I ended up taking the campaign role, spent the next eight months getting my boss reelected, and got into my dream public policy program the following year. I am certain that I was a better grad student and am now a better manager because of that campaign, and it remains one of my favorite jobs to date.

Why is it important for people in the impact field to network?

A lot of people feel icky about networking, and I completely understand why – it often feels forced, disingenuous, or downright boring. But I believe that when you’re networking over something you really care about, the experience changes into an opportunity to bounce ideas off each other and be reassured that a lot of other people care about the same things as you. This is especially true for those in the impact field because everything you’re working on requires collective action. Networking then becomes a tool to learn more, break out of your professional silo, and build a team to make lasting change.

To hear more from MaryRose and our other speakers, register now for Net Impact Boston’s 9th Annual Speed Networking Event next week! To see a list of other speakers and reserve your ticket, click here.

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