When Commencement approaches, it's a natural crunch time for seniors preparing resumes, studying for grad school exams, and applying for jobs. Thinking about life after Mac, though, needs to begin well before senior year.
We must make more obvious and accessible the paths from what students explore at Macalester to eventual careers, and every student should have ample opportunity to prepare for life after graduation. The entire community—not simply the students themselves or the Career Development Center—must embrace this work.
The expectation that we prepare students for both short-term job placement and long-term, rewarding careers is stronger than ever before. Strengthening the college's career preparation program and global network adds value to a Mac education—and creates a smoother transition for new alumni embarking on paths that take them all over the world.
For every major. All departments should establish strong connections with alumni and provide opportunities to reflect on professional goals.
Build the faculty network. Add a group of practitioner-educators to the faculty—people who will both teach and help connect students to potential careers.
Mac resumé. Consider creating a system of four-year portfolios for students to track preparation for their careers, reflect on their goals, and practice articulating how they've been prepared for life after Macalester.