Civic Engagment Office

Staff Biographies

Nell Anderson came to Bryn Mawr in 2000 as the Praxis Program was just initiated at Bryn Mawr and has provided leadership to the development of the program since that time.  She is currently a Co-Chair of the Philadelphia Higher Education Network for Neighborhood Development (PHENND).   Her focus at the CEO has been on the development of key partnerships between the College and organizations and schools in the Norristown and Philadelphia communities.   She has an MSW (U of Penn ’78) and a BS in Psychology (Georgetown ’75) and has many years of experience in higher education, program management, and counseling.   Prior to coming to Bryn Mawr, her work focused on increasing the college access and success of students from the Philadelphia public schools. She continues to be interested in these issues, and is also interested in issues related to immigrant communities and public health. 

Nell lives in Philadelphia with her husband, Manuel, and cat, Fiddlesticks.   She has three grown children and four grandchildren.  She keeps her life in balance with the support of yoga and has recently discovered spinning! 


Ellie Esmond began working at Bryn Mawr in 2000 when the Civic Engagement Office was still known as the Community Service Office. During her time here she has helped to develop programs such as the Ardmore Community Tutoring, the Belmont Mentoring Program, and the Summer of Service program. In addition, Ellie coordinated the steering committee that developed LEAP, the Leadership, Empowerment and Advancement Program.

Originally from Virginia, Ellie attended James Madison University and majored in English with a minor in Women’s Studies. She received her Master’s Degree in Women’s Studies from Rutgers University before coming to Bryn Mawr. She currently lives in New Jersey with her husband, Kevin, son Paul, and two cats, Alice and Mo. Ellie enjoys reading, knitting trying new restaurants, and traveling.


Kelly Sheard is the Assistant Director for the CEO, splitting assignments between Praxis courses and supporting volunteer programs. She received her Master’s in Social Work from the University of Michigan-Ann Arbor in 2007 and has had the pleasure of working in some facet of the Education industry since. A Philadelphia native, Kelly enjoys volunteering (surprise surprise) and finding new and meaningful pursuits to keep her motivated. She’s a very slow runner and a spin enthusiast, which helps off- set the effects of  her other passion of cooking and eating!


Anne Bradley is one of the Praxis Field Placement Coordinators at the CEO.  Originally from Haiti, Anne Bradley has been living in the U.S. since 1992.  She obtained a Bachelor’s degree in Social Work at Eastern University in St. Davids, PA and a Master in Social Service Management with a Home and School Certification from Bryn Mawr College School of Social Work and Social Research in 2002.  Anne lives with her husband, three children, her youngest sister and her dog, Genevieve.  She loves to travel, read, listen to music and take long walks.  Anne has been involved in Haiti since the earthquake with the rebuilding of a school, providing/leading/supporting conferences on education and mental health issues to various groups in Haiti.


Sydney Coppola has been at the College for almost 10 years, and is now the administrative assistant at both the Civic Engagement Office and the Pensby Center, handling website maintenance finances and scheduling. She lives with her husband, three children and cat, and spends much of her free time attending swim meets, band concerts and dance recitals. In her spare time, she enjoys music, movies and reading.


Jessica Lee coordinates the Praxis III Independent Study Program at the Civic Engagement Office.  She is a Ph.D. candidate in the Graduate School of Social Work and Social Research.  Her research interests involve immigrant and refugee health care and global health policy.  She is also the TA for the College’s Institutional Review Board.  Jessica is a Schweitzer Fellow and is partnering with the Nationalities Service Center to serve refugees with high medical needs and to implement a mental health screening tool at Philadelphia Refugee Health Collaborative clinics.  Jessica’s long-term goals are to promote a socially just understanding of health and illness in a global setting.  She loves to travel and is trying to learn Nepali and French.  

Aba Daniels coordinates Praxis III French students and international student volunteers.  She is a second year student at the Graduate School of Social Work and Social Research and works at the Civic Engagement Office for her social work practicum. She previously worked in research involving maternal health and community development and remains interested in the capacity building of young women. Aba loves to swim and to walk, and her love of travel has taken her to several European, African and Middle Eastern countries. She has recently discovered the benefits of green smoothies and she absolutely loves to cook!