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We couldn't be more excited to welcome the Fall 2013 class of Fellows to Harvard's campus and show them everything we do at the Institute of Politics. We asked each Fellow to respond to a few questions about why they are looking forward to this experience and what students and the Cambridge community can expect to learn about from each one of them.

Meet Karen Mills. Karen Gordon Mills was sworn in as the 23rd Administrator of the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) in April of 2009 after being appointed by President Barack Obama and unanimously confirmed by the U.S. Senate. She has served in the President’s Cabinet since January of 2012. 

As part of the Cabinet, Administrator Mills is a key member of the President’s economic leadership team, reflecting the important role that small businesses and entrepreneurs play in our nation’s long-term economic growth and global competitiveness.


Why did you apply to be a Fellow at Harvard University's Institute of Politics?

My participation as an IOP fellow was sparked by a conversation with my colleague, U.S. Secretary of Agriculture Tom Vilsack. After he was Governor of Iowa he became an IOP fellow and had a great experience. I was looking for a way to continue the important discussion on the intersection of politics and entrepreneurship and how together they are working to grow the American economy. The IOP provides the perfect opportunity and Secretary Vilsack promised to speak to my study group - true to his word he'll join me on October 2, 2013! 

What can students and participants expect to learn about during your Study Groups?

In my study group we will meet fellow appointees from the Obama administration, entrepreneurs, and elected officials to discuss how to grow the American economy and create jobs by strengthening the entrepreneurial ecosystem. Topics will include the role of regulation, health care reform, access to capital, and how to create more opportunities for women entrepreneurs.

What are you most looking forward to this semester?  

I am looking forward to being back at Harvard and having the chance to work with students who have an interest in entrepreneurship and America’s economic growth. After traveling around the country and working for the President for almost five years, this fall will be a chance to share the insights and optimism I have found with talented young people who will be America’s future.

Karen's  first  Study Group "Jobs, Jobs, Jobs: The Role of Entrepreneurship in U.S. Competitiveness" will be held on Wednesday, September 25 at  4:00 p.m in L166 on the first floor of the Institute of Politics. 

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