Intent on Action: The 23–24 Davidson Field Scholars
Thursday, December 14, 2023
University of Michigan students have been essential drivers for impact since the William Davidson Institute was founded more than 30 years ago. As an independent nonprofit with an education focus, students participate in each stage of WDI’s long-term partner projects, from data analysis to strategy development to implementation. Since 2019, U-M students most dedicated to WDI’s mission to equip economic decision-makers in emerging markets with the tools for success have earned special recognition as Davidson Field Scholars.
These students are dedicated to finding business-empowered approaches to many economic and social issues in low- and middle-income countries (LMICs). They also demonstrate commitment to understanding and sharing business solutions with partners through consulting, analyzing, and managing complex dilemmas for organizations around the globe.
To earn the designation, scholars must complete two courses or programs through WDI. Many students work with WDI to complete their Multidisciplinary Action Project (MAP) as part of their MBA degree through U-M’s Ross School of Business. Students may also participate in a WDI-supported internship, independent study, or other specialty projects to become Davidson Field Scholars. Through these opportunities, partner organizations secure imperative guidance and students gain meaningful skills.
Learn more about this program on our Student Opportunities page.
WDI’s 2023–24 Davidson Field Scholars
Robin F. Baker (MBA ‘24)
Robin F. Baker is deeply committed to advancing health equity and improving the health and well-being of vulnerable communities. Before pursuing her MBA at Ross, Baker practiced as a licensed occupational therapist specializing in stroke rehabilitation. Baker is also the co-founder of GoTHERAPY, a nonprofit organization that has made significant strides in improving access to community-based physical rehabilitation services in West Africa.
Baker completed a WDI-sponsored MAP project with EMRI Green Health Services in India, evaluating the effectiveness of a real-time monitoring tool used for emergency response services. Baker plans to work with a WDI partner, the International Center for Rehabilitation, in Ghana, which was established by Dr. Abena Tannor. Baker will assist in the development of a hand and wrist rehabilitation device developed by Tannor, WDI and University of Michigan engineering students.
Baker holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Kinesiology from the University of North Carolina at Greensboro and earned a Master’s of Science in Occupational Therapy from Howard University. After graduating from U-M, Baker plans to join a leadership development program specializing in healthcare operations.
Alhan Fakhr (MBA and Master of Public Policy ‘24)
Before joining the Ross School of Business, Alhan Fakhr earned his Bachelor of Arts in Politics, graduating with the inaugural class of New York University – Shanghai. Born and raised in Pakistan, Fakhr also attended college in China, and has lived and worked in the United States, the United Arab Emirates, the Czech Republic and Malaysia.
Fakhr has completed a Multidisciplinary Action Project (MAP) with One Acre Fund in Rwanda, working on expanding the organization’s digital fundraising strategy to include a higher volume of small donors.
Fakhr also spent the summer of 2024 in Kigali working on a growth strategy initiative for the Rwandan program and is involved in the International Investment Fund.
Davontae “Nate” Foxx-Drew (MBA and Master of Health Services Administration, ‘24)
Davontae “Nate” Foxx-Drew is pursuing a dual-degree from the University of Michigan’s Ross School of Business and School Public Health. An alumnus of the University of California, Los Angeles with a Bachelor of Arts in Anthropology and African American Studies, Foxx-Drew’s drive stems from a deep-seated interest in healthcare executive leadership, aiming to reshape healthcare delivery systems globally.
While at Ross, Foxx-Drew completed a WDI-sponsored Multidisciplinary Action Project in Ethiopia, targeting improving healthcare access in sub-Saharan Africa. Collaborating with International Clinical Laboratories and Cerba Lancet Africa, the objective was to enhance access to essential laboratory and diagnostic supplies. In 2024, Foxx-Drew plans to work with a WDI partner, the International Center for Rehabilitation, in Ghana, which was established by Dr. Abena Tannor. Foxx-Drew will assist in the development of a hand and wrist rehabilitation device developed by Tannor, WDI and University of Michigan engineering students.
Foxx-Drew has worked with various global entities, from strategizing HR initiatives for the University of California to optimizing healthcare solutions in Ethiopia.
After completing his studies, Foxx-Drew has accepted a full-time role at UnitedHealth Group, where he will join their Leadership Experience cohort. In this position, Foxx-Drew will work across the UHG enterprise in strategy, operations, and risk management, furthering his commitment to increasing access to care and demonstrating his leadership in healthcare and health equity. His post-graduate career at UnitedHealth Group aligns with his vision of designing robust, efficient, and inclusive healthcare delivery models.
Stephen Schiavone (Weekend MBA ‘24)
Stephen Schiavone is completing the Weekend MBA at U-M’s Ross School of Business. Born and raised outside of New York City, Schiavone has always been involved with small businesses and the startup space. Schiavone is a graduate of a Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute with dual majors in Business and Design, Innovation, and Society. Schiavone has been working as a technology consultant, as well as for the past six years. He has a passion for solving complex business and technology challenges with diverse teams.
Schiavone completed a WDI-sponsored MAP project with Poornatha in India. His team worked to extend their training program into business to consumer operations and added a consulting element.
After graduating from U-M, Schiavone plans to pursue a career in Entrepreneurship Through Acquisition (ETA), starting a Search Fund in Spring 2024