Preparing for STEM and healthcare careers & more

Dear Friends,

We’re kicking off 2017 with a renewed effort to work with innovators across the country to support students’ educational and career success. We’ll also be working with state and local leaders across Pennsylvania to keep our customers — and their constituents — connected to each other and their world. Our industry is changing faster than ever, and we want to make sure public policies keep up with those changes.

We’re looking forward to a great year.

As always, I welcome your feedback.

Best wishes,
J. Michael Schweder, president, AT&T-Mid Atlantic

AT&T Supports North Light Community Center in Philadelphia

Since its founding in Philadelphia in 1936, North Light Community Center has worked every day to enable people of all ages and abilities in Philadelphia, especially those most in need, to reach their full potential as productive and responsible citizens through initiatives that support and enrich children, teens and families.

North Light has a mentorship program that brings Drexel University College of Medicine students together with underserved, female high school students who are interested in learning about career opportunities in healthcare. A $7,500 contribution from AT&T will help strengthen and sustain this program, according to Irene Madrak, executive director, North Light Community Center.

“I always wanted to be in the medical field, and WIM gave me an opportunity to get a glimpse of what my future could look like. WIM made me feel confident in my decision to become a nurse. I am grateful to North Light Community Center for bringing this program to our community for girls who have an interest in medicine,” stated Jaime Kahn, former WIM participant and current Widener nursing student.

Women in Medicine (WIM), part of NL’s youth college and career readiness program portfolio, was formed in September 2013. WIM is an all-female student group at Drexel University College of Medicine aimed at working with female teens who are interested in entering healthcare, or in learning more about the field. The mentorship program provides interested teens with guidance and advice from current medical students, along with fun, educational activities to help participants learn more about the exciting world of healthcare and the opportunities that exist.

The activities include CPR and First Aid training, a career panel discussion focused on the healthcare industry, a trip downtown to the Mutter Museum at the College of Physicians, and three trips to Drexel’s College of Medicine’s campus in East Falls in the spring.

These trips included a visit to the anatomy lab, the simulation lab and a lesson on the brain. Students are directly exposed to non-traditional careers for women in the medical field, including surgery and specialty medicine. WIM recruits heavily from Roxborough High School, Saul Agricultural High School, Lankeneau High School and Parkway Northwest.

“Congratulations to North Light, and a thank you to AT&T for their generous contribution to support the Women in Medicine Program. Statistics reinforce that we need to continue to raise the awareness of young women to the career opportunities in STEM-related fields. This contribution helps to make that vision a reality for students who participate in this program at North Light,” stated state Rep. Pam DeLissio, D-194.

Joseph Divis, executive director for AT&T External Affairs, said the company’s support will help these high school students learn more about the kinds of careers that are possible if they stay in school and focus on their studies.

“An effective mentor can help a person find her way academically and professionally and achieve success in school, on the job and in life. Thanks to the great student mentors at Drexel University College of Medicine, and the resources offered through North Light, these young people are on the road to success in the health care industry — or whatever they choose to pursue,” Divis said.

Divis added that the program is aligned with AT&T Aspire, the company’s signature philanthropic initiative that drives innovation in education by bringing diverse resources to bear on the issue, including funding, technology, employee volunteerism and mentoring.

For more information about North Light Community Center, visit

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J. Michael Schweder is President of AT&T Mid Atlantic States. He directs the corporate efforts in Delaware, New Jersey, Maryland, Pennsylvania, Virginia, West Virginia, and Washington, D.C. Schweder joined AT&T in 1983 as Director of Public Affairs in Harrisburg, PA. In 1985 he became Regional Director of Government Affairs in AT&T's Washington, D.C office until he moved to Corporate Headquarters in New Jersey in 1996. In 2000 he was named State President for New Jersey. Schweder served three terms as a Member of the Pennsylvania House of Representatives (1974-1980), and also served as a Member of Bethlehem, PA City Council (1998-2010). His Council Colleagues elected him President of City Council three times. He serves on numerous boards across the Mid Atlantic region, including the Greater Philadelphia Chamber of Commerce , New Jersey Business and Industry Association and the New Jersey Manufacturers Insurance Company. In 1971 he received a BA degree in Political Science from Lycoming College, Williamsport, PA, and completed the executive education program in business at the University of Michigan in 1987. He resides in Bethlehem, PA with his wife Annette.

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