Mike Watson ’09 & Clark Winchell ’09 — Ora Inc.

The Road Ahead. What helps you get ready for what’s next?

Talk about an experience at Bates that unexpectedly turned out to be valuable to your work now.

Mike: “A class in international politics. My professor challenged us to examine Iranian–U.S. relations from an Iranian perspective. To look critically at both sides of a situation, to rethink your whole understanding of a subject—that’s been crucial at Ora.”

Clark: “My first-year seminar in anthropology was like that. I’ve never felt more out of my element—and it was, hands down, the class that most changed the way I see the world. But I was also thinking about my experience with the Bates Fishing Club. That’s how I met an alumnus who became a friend and led me to Ora.”

You both played sports. Was that important?

Mike: “In my last race at Bates, my 4×800 relay team broke the 79-year-old school record. So I felt like I’d met a huge challenge—and was ready for new challenges ahead.”

Clark: “I loved my team—but I can’t stress enough the importance of the whole community. Bates rejects the idea of separation. If you played sports, you weren’t just a jock. The diversity of friends I made was immense. And the community stays with you after you graduate. That’s a powerful thing.”

Mike Watson ’09 (above left) is a senior site operations associate at Ora Inc. in Medford, Mass. At Bates he majored in biology and was captain of the cross country and indoor and outdoor track teams.

Clark WinChell ’09 (above right) is a clinical research associate at Ora. At Bates he majored in biology and was captain of the soccer team and president of the fishing club.

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