Three alumni among select scholars placed into prestigious Presidential Management Fellowship program

Over the past decade, three Ripon College alumni, Sarah Anderson ’10, Garrison Anderson ’16 and Abby Korb ’20, have been placed into the Presidential Management Fellowship (PMF), a prestigious two-year program focused on developing the next generation of potential government leaders.

Siblings Sarah Anderson and Garrison Anderson have completed the fellowship and each now work for the federal government. Korb began her fellowship in May 2022.

Garrison Anderson says the program is extremely competitive and for individuals with advanced degrees. Only 14% of applicants are selected as finalists, and about half of those finalists ultimately are enrolled. Korb adds that the application process is fairly rigorous, including a multipart assessment and application packet as well as several interviews for finalists. In her applicant pool for 2022, there were 8,065 applications.

Once selected, individuals are placed into roles within various federal agencies on an accelerated leadership development track. Under the program, Sarah Anderson worked for the USDA Forest Service, Garrison Anderson worked for the United States Census Bureau, and Korb is working for the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid.

The three alumni agree that the program is valuable to their professional and career growth.

“My PMF has put me on the trajectory that I am on,” says Sarah Anderson. “As a federal employee, I’m focused on public service; through the PMF, I was able to focus on developing as a leader.” She now is an ecologist with the Forest Service.

Garrison Anderson agrees, adding that “working for the federal government exposes you to big problems, requiring big solutions with systematic and strategic thinking. That type of experience doesn’t grow on trees, and I’m extraordinarily thankful for the growth it provided me.” He now leads communication efforts for MATTER, the premier healthcare incubator and innovation hub based in Chicago.

While Korb has not yet completed her fellowship, she says she already has learned “how important it is to serve your community in whatever way you can.” After she completes the program, she hopes to spend the rest of her career making a positive impact on health policy.

At Ripon College, Sarah Anderson earned her degree in biology, and she earned a Ph.D. in biology from Washington State University. Garrison Anderson earned his Ripon degree in communication, and he earned a master’s degree in rhetoric and communication from Colorado State University. Korb earned degrees from Ripon in politics and government as well as psychology, and received a master’s degree in political science from American University.

“I’m thankful for the education Ripon College has provided me,” Garrison Anderson says. “From graduate school to the PMF program to working in healthcare innovation, Ripon has taught me how to be flexible and maintain a growth mindset which has allowed me to build a solid career foundation.”

(Photo: Clockwise from top: Abby Korb ’20, Garrison Anderson ’16, Sarah Anderson ’10)

Amanda Barlow ’23
Appleton, Wisconsin


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