Tulane grads recognized on Forbes’ 30 under 30


Kate Clark, Staff Writer

If the recent Forbes 30 Under 30 list is any indication, Tulane students should not be concerned when it comes to post-graduation employment.

Five Tulane graduates were featured in Forbes Magazine 30 under 30 list, which highlights 600 entrepreneurs, talents and agents for change in 30 different fields.

Eric Lavin, Aspen Ventures/Urban Innovation Lab

Lavin connects social entrepreneurs to the resources of the Aspen Institute. One of his projects is the Urban Innovation Lab, a social incubator that works to give momentum to urban innovations for marginalized communities in American cities.

A member of the class of 2009 with a degree in international political economy, Lavin is no stranger to the economic disparity problems facing American cities.

“The social service component of my Tulane education was very important in beginning to the ‘tale of two cities’ story that is present throughout our country,” Lavin said.

Alex Reed, Advanced Polymer Monitoring Technologies

APMT was born in Tulane’s physics department. Reed founded APMT to commercialize the patents of Tulane Professor Wayne Reed, his father, with three other members of the Tulane faculty. These patents are licensed through Tulane.

“Because Professor Reed is my father, I actually grew up hearing about the technologies and working in the lab,” Alex Reed said. “When I graduated from Tulane, there was an opportunity for me to join the lab in a strategic business capacity and begin leading the APMT business effort.”

Alex Reed, who received a Bachelor of Arts in economics and Latin American studies in 2008, is the president and CEO of APMT. The organization creates products that monitor chemical reactions in the manufacturing of products for the Polymer Industry.

Jared Finegold, Royal Caribbean Mobile

Jared Finegold, a 2009 graduate with a degree in marketing, is the mobile product owner for Royal Caribbean International. He launched the app Royal iQ, for guests to manage their trip onboard the ship, as well as the mobile version of Royal Caribbean’s site.

Finegold credits a Tulane professor for getting him interested in marketing. His first career in marketing was actually at Tulane in University Services.

“After taking the core marketing course with Professor Bakamitsos (whom to this day, I still consider my mentor and speak to regularly), I knew I wanted a career in marketing,” Fine said.

Anoop Jain, Sanitation Health Rights in India

Jain began his masters degree at Tulane in 2011, a year after he first started working on public health issues in India. He said studying at Tulane allowed him and his team to work on their idea to refine it into a project that had the potential to be beneficial to the people of India.

“The value add gained from Tulane was that it was a space where we could nurture the idea and refine it into something that could be used by the Indian public,” Jain said. “The school’s support definitely encouraged me and my team to work as hard as we can to build a successful organization and system to end open defecation in rural India.”

Jain, a 2013 graduate of the School of Public Health, founded Sanitation and Health Rights in India, a nonprofit organization that works to end public defecation in rural India.

SHRI is a self-sustaining organization in that it makes use of the methane in the waste collected in the public toilet facilities they’ve built to power water filtration devices. The organization then sells purified water to communities throughout India for a nominal fee, using the income to maintain their toilet facilities.

Thomas McAfee, Distninc.tt

“[Distninc.tt is] the largest, most active network of LGBT youth, a place where they can safely connect with each other, express themselves and explore their identity,” McAfee said.

McAfee, a member of the class of 2010, founded the startup Distinc.tt, which the Wall Street Journal called, “The Gay App you can bring home to Mom.”

McAfee gained the skills needed to launch Distinc.tt here in New Orleans.

“[Tulane Professors] challenged me to take risks and explore novel ideas, and to apply what we learned in the classroom to the world around us,” McAfee said. “That’s what I did with Distinc.tt.”