2018 Arts Young Alumni Award Recipient

Mandy Tao Mandy Ran Tao with her YAA 2018

Having founded one NGO, hiked two volcanoes, completed three marathons, learned four languages, and lived in five countries, Mandy (Ran) Tao is a well-rounded individual and a proud Faculty of Arts alumnus (BA ‘10, Honours Economics).

Mandy currently serves as Director of Strategy at Merck, working alongside the executive team to manage high impact projects for the business, and launch and scale new cross-functional programs.

Passionate about diversity, inclusion, and equality, Mandy spearheaded many initiatives through “Lean IN Frankfurt” and “Lean IN Chapter Europe”, where she serves as a leadership team member. In 2017, Mandy was commended by Sheryl Sandberg for carrying the “Lean IN” flag to the top of Mt Kilimanjaro (5,895m, 19,341ft) to inspire women to achieve their ambitions.

Previously, Mandy co-founded the award-winning NGO called “Education Togo Switzerland” to make education and learning more accessible for students in Africa. With €50,000 raised, the team funded school buildings and computer labs in rural communities across the region – an initiative that has supported over 1,500 local students to date.

During her undergraduate studies, Mandy received the “President’s Circle Award for Volunteerism” from David Johnston in recognition of her commitment to the university and local community at large. After graduation, Mandy traveled through Central and South America, and subsequently moved to Switzerland on a full, merit-based scholarship.

Mandy is a seasoned traveler and enjoys stepping out of her comfort zone to build genuine connections with people from all walks of life.