Announcing our 2017 Summer Associates

In May, SILA announced the Summer Associate Program, which is an immersive experience in working for a boutique start-up consulting firm. Each Associate is given weekly mentoring sessions, goes through an individualized coaching program for their professional goals, works with an external SILA client to introduce them to consulting work, and develops an internal project to help expand SILA's internal operations.

We had an overwhelming response with many well-qualified candidates interested in the program and are excited to have three Associates join the SILA team this summer. We are very pleased to announce our 2017 Summer Associates!

From left to right: Hafsah Lakhany, Zawar Jafri, and Ahmed Abdelgany.

From left to right: Hafsah Lakhany, Zawar Jafri, and Ahmed Abdelgany.

Hafsah Lakhany

Hafsah Lakhany is devoted to strategically adding value to organizations to optimize the scope of their operations in order to maximize community impact. She launched her career with an organization by the name of Help for Brain Injured Children Inc. where she succeeded in obtaining grants from Edison International, for a fully functioning mobile computer lab  customized to the unique needs of  students with multiple disabilities.

She serves as a Team Leader of Students Consulting for Non-Profit Organizations where she provides pro-bono business consulting services to non-profit clients by pinpointing opportunities and providing strategic insights to optimize their community impact.  Her most memorable clients included Project Independence, who she worked with to generate a Data Repository, Donor Relations, and Social Media Marketing Model, as well as the Red Hibiscus Foundation where she streamlined the fundraising efforts and automated the recruitment optimization process. In addition, she had the privilege of providing consulting services to startup SeeJaneGo, for whom she offered strategic solutions for forming organizational partnerships, strengthening cross-side network effects, and optimizing profitability of tiered revenue models.

Zawar Jafri

Zawar Jafri was born and raised in Southern California and worked with a variety of youth leadership and inter-community engagement organizations from a young age like the Bridging Communities program of the Japanese American Citizens League (JACL). He graduated from the University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA) in 2015 with a degree in Political Science and an emphasis on American Government and Racial and Ethnic Politics. In college, Zawar played an active role in several on and off campus student organizations, in student government, and as an undergraduate assistant for the Journal on Islamic and Near Eastern Law (JINEL). He is currently a graduate student of theology at Harvard University.

Zawar has been passionate about media his whole life and in his spare time enjoys writing and directing short videos in addition to writing and performing music. He has begun substantive research into the portrayal of Arabs, South Asians, and Muslims in popular culture.

Ahmed Abdelgany

Ahmed grew up in Southern California working with Muslim nonprofits since he was in middle school. Ahmed recently graduated from the University of California, Riverside with a Bachelor's in Science in Computer Science and Business. While in college, Ahmed was invested in building Muslim Student Association West (MSA West), a grassroots organization comprised of Muslim Student Associations representing campuses across the West Coast of the United States. He formerly served as its president and currently serves on the Board of Trustees. Ahmed initiated MSA West's transformation from a volunteer student organization to a staff based nonprofit and developed a new vision for the organization.

Ahmed also spends his weekends as a facilitator of a number of youth programs including CAIR's political education program, Muslim Gamechangers Network. Ahmed has also served as an Business Technology Analyst Intern at Deloitte Consulting and a Software Development Engineer Intern at Amazon. In September, Ahmed will be joining Deloitte as a business consultant.

Summer Associate Program


SILA is a social impact consulting firm that provides strategy, project management, and convening support to clients in philanthropy, entertainment, and the nonprofit sector. As a start-up whose clients include a Fortune 100 company and Hollywood influencers, the work provides high-level access to projects whose primary focus is social good. The work environment is fast-paced and hands-on.


The Summer Associate Program at SILA is meant to be an immersive experience in what it means to work for a boutique consulting firm that is in its startup phase. Associates will be expected to be entrepreneurial, self-motivated, disciplined, and discreet. This is an ideal opportunity for college students to gain experience in the real world of consulting while getting mentorship and career coaching from the principal of the firm.

The Summer Associate Program will run for twelve weeks during the summer of 2017. Each Associate will be given weekly mentoring sessions, go through an individualized coaching program for their professional goals, and if concluding the program successfully, will be introduced to someone within the industry who can serve as an accelerator for their career. This is not a paid program; the experience, relationships, and access provided through the program are incentives for the right candidate. Associates will be expected to work an average of twenty hours each week.

There are three areas of concentration that the Summer Associates will be focusing on:

  • Business Operations (including business development, accounting, and communications)
  • Project Management (including project plans for clients, coordinating meetings, and attending events)
  • Brand Management (including social media, website, and newsletter)


The following is a list of general qualifications and attributes required for the Summer Associate Program. Qualified candidates will have:

  • A robust analytical skill set
  • Meet deadlines, be organized, and be able to multitask
  • Strong verbal, written, and presentation skills
  • Endless curiosity and a penchant for thinking the impossible
  • Demonstrated achievement in both academic and extracurricular activities
  • Excellent interpersonal and communication skills
  • Possession of initiative, integrity, maturity, and professionalism
  • The ability to work both independently and in a team environment
  • High levels of diligence and detail-orientation
  • The desire to be successful and make meaningful contributions immediately


Candidates can apply for the Summer Associate Program by sending a cover letter, resume, and relevant coursework to marya[at]silaconsulting[dot]co with the subject "Summer Associate Application." Applications will be accepted until June 7, 2017. Applicants who match the criteria for the Summer Associate Program will be contacted by June 12, 2017 for an interview. Applications will be accepted on a rolling basis. Candidates should be based in the greater Los Angeles area.

Welcome to SILA

Welcome to SILA

SILA's origin story is simple.

First, it began as a series of conversations. As I sat around a table with friends or family, talking about my experiences, everyone urged me to start my own company. This was a daunting prospect - I've always seen myself as an organizer. I get things done. But I've never seen myself as a business owner. It felt like a whole new world.