An alliance of some of Dartmouth’s prominent campus centers has taken shape over the past 18 months, aiming to streamline and improve the college’s delivery of career-related services.
The Career Community Task Force, focused on services for undergraduates, includes representatives from Career Services, the Tucker Foundation, the Dickey Center for International Understanding, the Rockefeller Center for Public Policy, the Institute for Security, Technology, and Society (ISTS), the Dartmouth College Athletic Department (DCAD), and the Women In Sciences Project (WISP).
Government Professor Daryl Press (right) moderating a Dickey Center panel discussion titled Careers in International Affairs: Careers in Government. The panel featured individuals who represented, from left to right, the Department of Commerce, the Central Intelligence Agency, the State Department, the Agency for International Development, and the Defense Intelligence Agency. (photo courtesy of the Dickey Center)
The group was launched in response to a report from a comprehensive external review of the Career Services program in 2008. The report introduced the idea of a career community, and the task force has met about once per term since November 2008.
Students ask questions after the panel. (photo courtesy of the Dickey Center)
“Dartmouth can be a pretty decentralized place in many respects,” Sturman says. “Career Services used to be the only game in town, but there’s been a natural evolution of career opportunities elsewhere as students have come to expect more. And that’s great, but it means you have pockets of services being offered around campus. We’re all trying to cooperate better and learn from each other.”
“The task force is helping us better deliver on a wider array of career offerings by knowing where the gaps are and who’s best positioned to fill in the holes,” says Director of Career Services Skip Sturman.
Christianne Hardy Wohlforth, associate director of the Dickey Center, has played an important role in the task force since its inception. She says that, with the task force in mind, the Dickey Center aims to more purposefully focus some programming on career planning and development.
“We do a lot of programs that are informational, and we provide opportunities for students to meet with people who are working in international affairs,” she says. “Many times students know they want to go into international affairs, but they’re not sure how they should pursue it. We provide concrete examples of what international careers actually look like and how you can prepare for them.”
Wohlforth feels that the task force has been beneficial, both to the Dickey Center and the students it serves.
“We’ve developed a model where there’s a nice division of labor,” Wohlforth says. “We’re providing the informational services, and Career Services is providing the support. It’s been a great innovation.”
The Task Force meets. Standing at the flip chart are Wohlforth (left) and Sturman. Seated (left-right) Tom Candon of ISTS, Anne Hudak of Athletics, Kathy Weaver of WISP, Tracy Dustin-Eichler of the Tucker Foundation, and Monica Wilson of Career Services. (photo by Joseph Mehling ’69)
Anne Hudak recently joined the task force as the DCAD representative. As the assistant athletic director for student enhancement, Hudak works with the Challenging Athletes’ Minds for Personal Success (CHAMPS) program, which promotes athletes’ personal, academic, athletic, and career development, as well as their pursuit of community service endeavors.
“I’m always looking for new and different ways to work with different centers on campus to enhance the career development portion of CHAMPS,” Hudak said. “It’s a great resource for our athletes.”
Sturman says that the task force is looking for new ways to work in tandem, from having a student internship database shared by all members of the network, to creating designated liaisons that help network members better understand and use Career Services. Ultimately, Sturman says that the task force is looking to create a one-stop shopping career-related website that connects all career programs on campus.
“Helping our colleagues maximize the utilization of the core services we offer is one of the best services we can provide,” says Sturman.