Co-Authors / Creators

Wendy and Kenneth Schuman co-founded Grad Life Choices, a pro bono program to help unemployed and underemployed college graduates take the next step forward. The idea for writing Millennials in Wonderland originated when coaches in the Grad Life Choices program asked for a comprehensive resource to help them coach Millennials. Wendy and Ken created and co-edited this book to help coaches, Millennials, and others who want college graduates to succeed and thrive.

Wendy Schuman*

Wendy Schuman

Wendy Schuman served as executive editor of Parents magazine and managing editor of She has edited books published by Doubleday and Rodale. Her work has appeared on,,, and in the New York Times and consumer magazines. She graduated from Tufts University (Phi Beta Kappa and magna cum laude). She received a master’s degree from the Columbia University Graduate School of Journalism.

Kenneth Schuman

Kenneth Schuman is a certified professional coach. He has held the positions of executive director of social service agencies, commissioner of economic development of New York City, vice president for corporate finance of an investment banking firm, president of a real estate development company, and career coach. A graduate of Hamilton College, he received an MBA from Columbia University and an MSW from Hunter College. He received his coach training from iPEC (Institute for Professional Excellence in Coaching).  He is coauthor of The Michelangelo Method: Release Your Inner Masterpiece and Create an Extraordinary Life (McGraw-Hill). 

Ken and Wendy have two children and live in West Orange, NJ.

Chapter Authors

Amy Alpert

Amy Alpert

The Challenges of Moving Back Home

Amy Alpert (Certified Professional Coach) received her coach training from the Wholebeing Institute and has a coaching practice rooted in Positive Psychology.  One of Amy’s particular areas of expertise is guiding clients in career development.  Prior to coaching, Amy was a human resources executive at Goldman Sachs where she focused on the wellness and work-life needs of thousands of employees.  Amy received a master’s degree in organizational psychology from Columbia University and is also a certified yoga instructor.  For more information about Amy’s coaching practice, visit her website at:  Amy lives in Short Hills, NJ.

Annette Cataldi

Annette Cataldi

Creating a Life Vision

Annette Cataldi is the President of VLV Coaching & Consulting Services, LLC a professional services firm specializing in leadership development and strategic vision.  She has more than 15 years of progressive corporate management experience and extensive experience in strategy development and implementation, organization development, and culture assimilation.  Prior to becoming an executive coach, she was a VP of Human Resources for a Fortune 200 Company with responsibility for more than 50 plants worldwide.  Annette holds a master’s degree in administration and a bachelor’s in business administration.  She received her coach training at Coach University.  Annette lives in Grosse Pointe, Michigan.  To learn more about Annette’s coaching practice, visit her website at:

Atina White

Atina White

Coaching Across Cultural Differences

Atina White (Certified Professional Coach) has a B.A. from Brown University with honors in organizational behavior and management.  Atina also earned a master’s degree from Lesley University in intercultural relations.  She received her coaching training at Accomplishment Coaching.  Atina coaches individual clients through inquiry, support and guidance, and she designs and conducts group workshops and retreats.  She was a Visiting Fellow in Programs and Development at Harvard University and program manager of the Social Enterprise Initiative at Harvard Business School.  For more information about Atina’s coaching practice, visit her website at:  Atina lives in Boston, MA.

Cara Maksimow

Cara Maksimow

Coping with Discouragement, Building Self-Confidence

Cara Maksimow, LCSW, CPC, graduated from Rutgers University with her B.A. in psychology and from Columbia University Graduate School with her master’s in clinical social work.  In 2014 she founded Maximize Wellness Counseling and Coaching, LLC in NJ, providing counseling and coaching services such as Clinical Psychotherapy, Life Coaching, and Wellness Workshops.  She is the author of the book Lose That Mommy Guilt: Tales and Tips from an Imperfect Mom.  Prior to opening her therapy practice, she worked for many years as a pharmaceutical sales trainer and district manager.  To learn more, visit her website at:

Carol Ann Vaughan

Carol Ann Vaughan

Can Assessment Tests Help?

Carol Ann Vaughan (Certified Professional Coach) received her comprehensive coach training at Accomplishment Coaching.  She has more than 30 years of experience in high school, community college, university and nonprofit education environments, including 12 years working specifically in the areas of student services.  Carol received a B.A. in education from Arizona State University where she graduated cum laude, and has completed extensive graduate work.  She currently runs her own coaching company, What’s Next Coaching, where she works with clients on personal and career development.  Carol lives in San Diego, CA. To learn more about Carol, visit her website at

Deborah Tyson *

Deborah Tyson

“But What Can I Do with My Life?” Narrowing Down Potential Career Choices

Deborah Tyson (Professional Certified Coach) is a career and small business coach who received her training through iPEC (Institute for Professional Excellence in Coaching).  Her professional experience includes 15 years working in the public and nonprofit sector within the fields of education, human resources, social services and nonprofit program management.  She holds a Master of Arts in Intercultural Relations from Lesley University in Cambridge, MA.  Debbie lives in Boston.  To learn more about Debbie’s coaching practice, visit her website at:

Elise Oranges*

Elise Oranges

Getting Experience When You Have None

Elise Oranges (Certified Professional Coach) has a B.A. from Marist College and received her coach training from Coach University.  In addition to working with young people and those in transition, Elise has been in the publishing industry for 40 years, most recently as a quality analyst for an international company, as well as an adjunct instructor of copyediting at NYU and a publishing consultant.  Elise is also a Reiki Master Teacher.  She is the founder of Sunnywaters Coaching, a holistic life coaching practice.  For more information, visit her website:  Elise lives in South Florida.

Ellen Reichert

Ellen Reichert

Helping Grads Deal with Student Debt

Ellen Reichert (Professional Certified Coach) has a B.A. degree in communications from the University of Missouri and received her coaching education from Coach University.  She is the founder of Whiteboard Coaching, LLC., and is a business coach for Edward Jones Company.  In addition to coaching, Ellen’s career has focused on marketing and employee engagement.  She has been manager and director of Solution Design for O.C. Tanner, Staples, and Corporate Express, and has held various positions in advertising.  Ellen lives in the St. Louis area.

Emily Benson *
Susan Hay

Emily Benson and Susan Hay

Helping Grads Ace Their Job Interviews

Emily Benson, Ph.D., and Susan Hay, M.A., are managing partners at LaunchingU, where they work with college students and new college graduates to help them launch their careers.  Susan brings a successful career in executive-level human resources roles and in executive search to her coaching work.  In addition to her role of managing partner at LaunchingU, Emily is an associate professor in management at Keene State College and had prior experience in human resources in the IT and construction industries.  To learn more about Susan and Emily’s coaching practice, visit their website at:

Greg Lewis

Greg Lewis

Creating Great Résumés and Cover Letters for Today’s Changing Job Market

Greg Lewis is a veteran career advisor working with students and alumni at National University.  In addition to his focus on advising veterans, active military and military spouses, Greg works to develop relationships with companies interested in hiring National University students and alumni.  He has a B.A. degree in history from Santa Clara University and a master’s degree from San Diego State University in Post-Secondary Educational Leadership with a concentration in Student Affairs.  Greg lives in San Diego, CA.

Juhua Wu

Juhua Wu

Bridging the Generational Divide

Juhua Wu (Certified Professional Coach) is consulting and associate director at the University of Rochester Center for Community Practice and founder of Juhua Wu Coaching.  She received her coach training from iPEC (Institute for Professional Excellence in Coaching) and her master’s degree from the University of Southern California.  She was trained in cultural and visual anthropology, psychology and biological science.  In addition to coaching, Juhua applies her expertise in behavioral and systems changes in HIV prevention and care.  She lives in Rochester, NY.

Kimberly Paterson

Coaching Millennials with Mental Health Challenges

Kimberly Paterson (Certified Professional Coach) helps leaders change the mindsets and behaviors that limit corporate and individual success.  She is the founder of CIM—a strategic planning and corporate communications company that works with senior executives of financial services organizations on change initiatives.  She earned her certification in “Unlocking Immunity To Change” at Harvard University and certifications in Emotional Intelligence in the Workplace and Employee Engagement & Motivation. Kimberly received her coach training from iPEC (Institute for Professional Excellence in Coaching). She is passionate about creating “aha moments”—that instant of clarity when people see what’s holding them back and how they can realistically move forward.

Kim Pearlstein

Kim Pearlstein

How to Leverage LinkedIn and Other Social Media Effectively

Kim Pearlstein has a bachelor’s in Accounting from the University of Delaware and a master’s in management from New Jersey Institute of Technology.  She is founder and CEO of Pearlmark LLC, which specializes in educating professionals on how to increase their visibility and grow their business by more effectively using email marketing (ConstantContact, LinkedIn, Facebook, and SendOutCards Greeting Cards).  For more information about Kim’s consulting practice, visit her website:  Also, feel free to send her a personalized LinkedIn connection request ( and tell her the best tip you learned from reading this chapter.  Kim lives in New Jersey.


Leigh Higgins

Building a Foundation of Trust

Leigh Higgins (Certified Professional Coach) graduated with a B.A. in economics from Rutgers University and an M.A. in education from the University of London. His coach training was completed at iPEC (Institute for Professional Excellence in Coaching).  He specializes in personal growth, shamanic healing practices, life and job transitioning, leadership development, and conflict resolution.  He has worked in corporate America for 25+ years.  Leigh lives in Hoboken, NJ. To learn more, visit:

Madeline McNeely

Madeline McNeely

Keeping Dreams Alive While Making a Living

Madeline McNeely’s mission is to condition leaders and organizations to do meaningful work for decades. Madeline is a multi-sector, interdisciplinary professional serving in the roles as executive leadership and career coach, consultant, facilitator, trainer.  She teaches Leadership Coaching Strategies and Non-Profit Leadership and Community Engagement at Harvard Extension School.  Madeline is passionate about the performing arts and social justice education.  She is certified in Conversational Intelligence (C-IQ), Leadership Embodiment and Integral Yoga.  She has a B.A. in Development Studies from Lewis & Clark College and an M. Ed from Temple University.  Madeline lives in the Boston area. Visit

Mary Kay Wedel

Mary Kay Wedel

Defining the Coaching Relationship

Mary Kay Wedel (Certified Professional Coach) is president of Choice Leaders Consulting Group (Monmouth Beach, NJ) specializing in career management and executive coaching.  She is also Senior Career Consultant at Lee Hecht Harrison (New York City) where she does career and transition coaching.  Mary Kay received her bachelor’s degree from Rutgers University and her coach training from iPEC (Institute for Professional Excellence in Coaching).  She has served in leadership roles in the media industry for more than 25 years, with experience in marketing, communications, business development, and sales.  Mary Kay lives in New Jersey.

Mira Simon

Mira Simon

Create Momentum! Setting Goals and Taking Steps To Get There

Mira Simon (Certified Professional Coach) received her coach training from iPEC (Institute for Professional Excellence in Coaching), where she served as admissions coach.  Prior to her coaching career, Mira spent over 25 years working in radio broadcasting sales and management.  She graduated from the University of California, Los Angeles with a B.A. in Communication Studies.  Her coaching company, Pathway to College, specializes in helping high school students discover their path and start making decisions that will propel their lives forward. To learn more about Mira’s coaching practice, visit her website at  Mira lives in San Diego, CA. 

Nancy Watanabe*

Nancy Watanabe

Millennials in Wonderland

Nancy Watanabe (ICF credentialed Professional Coach) earned a B.S. in biochemistry with honors and a M.S. in plant physiology from the University of California, Davis.  She received her coach training from Coach University.  Nancy is a certified project manager whose experience spans 15+ years in global drug development, discovery technology (genetics and combinatorial chemistry), software, and biotechnology industries.  She is currently Program Director at BeiGene, Ltd.  In prior roles over a 10-year tenure with Roche/Genentech, she led several leadership development initiatives in partnership with the Human Resources Executive Talent Development group.  Nancy lives in the San Francisco Bay area.

Nicoletta Pichardo

Nicoletta Pichardo

First in the Family: Coaching First-Generation College Grads

Nicoletta Pichardo (Certified Professional Coach) has a B.A. degree in psychology and a master’s in education (concentration in counseling), both earned at the University of Texas.  She received her coach training at iPEC (Institute for Professional Excellence in Coaching). Nicoletta has her own coaching company (Navigo Coaching).  As a Professional Life Transition Coach, she is driven to help clients step out of stress, overwhelm, and limits by unlocking and unblocking what is holding them back.  She has held leadership roles in international organizations and nonprofit boards of directors.  A native of Munich Germany, Nicoletta calls Washington D.C. her home.

Sandra Klein

Sandra Klein

Coaching Critical Networking Skills

Sandra Klein (Certified Professional Coach) was trained at iPEC (Institute for Professional Excellence in Coaching) and works as a partner and coach at Thought In Motion.  Previously, Sandy worked in sales and marketing as district business manager at Schwarz Pharma, regional sales director at Inspire, sales executive at Roving Coach International, and Northeast district manager at Muro Pharmaceuticals.  Sandy graduated from Northeastern University in Boston with a B.A. in languages.  She lives in northern New Jersey.

Sue Hall*

Sue Hall

Grad School or Not?

Sue Hall (Certified Professional Coach) currently works as senior business coach for Edward Jones, one of the largest investment firms in the United States.  Sue has more than 30 years of experience as a financial professional.  Her role at Edward Jones is to coach new financial advisors all across the country from start to 36 months, and to coach veteran staff on request.  Sue is also a licensed financial advisor and is a member of her team’s committee for Associate and Leadership Development.  She received her coach training at Coach University.  Sue is based in St. Louis, MO.

Tenley Hardin*

Tenley Hardin

Bumps in the Road: Coping with Fears, Blocks, and Gremlins

Tenley Hardin (Certified Professional Coach) was trained by iPEC (Institute for Professional Excellence in Coaching) and founded the coaching company Limitless Heart, which specializes in Intuition and Life Purpose coaching.  Previously, Tenley taught high school and college English for eight years, and she has counseled high school and college students.  She earned her B.A. from the University of Michigan and received a master’s in Education from Belmont University. For more information about Tenley’s coaching practice, visit her website at Tenley lives in Los Angeles, CA.

Valerie dorn*

Valerie Dorn

Finding a Job: The 7 Biggest Challenges for Millennials

Valerie Dorn (Certified Professional Coach) is founder and owner of Find Fulfillment Coaching. She received a B.S. degree in psychology from the University of Wisconsin, master’s degrees in school and professional counseling from the University of Delaware and the University of Pennsylvania, and her Certified Professional Coach training at iPEC (Institute for Professional Excellence in Coaching). With a background in education, counseling, and advising, Valerie, who is also a yoga and meditation teacher, has helped thousands of people achieve their academic, career, and personal goals through her work in higher education and healthcare.  To learn more about Valerie, visit her website at: