Students follow professionals with new Douglass program


Douglass Residential College students have the opportunity to learn, gain real-world experience and plan their future with the debut of the Douglass Externship Experience.

The experience offers currently enrolled DRC students opportunities to shadow and be mentored by a career professional in an area of interest, career or industry that the student would like to explore, said Leslie Danehy, associate director for Leadership and Development.

“The goal is to help students clarify their academic and career goals and connect them with mentors,” Danehy said.

Participating in the externship allows student to get an “inside glimpse” into the daily work life in a specific career, Danehy said.

The externship is a learning opportunity during which students spend one or two weeks meeting people on the job and building a professional network, she said. Many externship site mentors are Douglass alumnae who care sincerely about the success of current students.

Students also receive special workshops to sharpen their career, networking and interview skills.

The externship provides students with the opportunity to confirm their career path choice by seeing what it's like to work in a specific job, Danehy said. While some students decide they need to rethink their plans, others discover entirely new career options that they had never considered previously.

Danehy recruited more than 100 professionals from a broad variety of industries to participate as Site Mentors, she said. About 250 students applied for these positions and Danehy matched the students up with a Site Mentor based on academic and career goals or interests.

The program has an assortment of sites, cutting-edge technology and workshops relating to individuals' career skills, according to their website.

Students can find externship options on their website, complete an online application process and take part in an interview, according to their website. Students will receive a complete set of programs designed to help them assess their goals, strengths and areas of interests and growth.

A broad range of areas are available, according their website. Some areas include STEM, policy, economic development, finance, public interest and women’s rights, but the list is growing everyday.

Placement is competitive, according to their website, and is not guaranteed. If a student is placed, it is not always their first choice, but it can still be beneficial. It is important to be adventurous, but a prepared resume and personal statement can help achieve a placement.

The externship is beneficial to students only during their college experience, but it also influences their future.

“Externship mentors often become personal mentors to their students, providing valuable advice and guidance, and they may be willing to serve as professional references when you enter the job market, “ she said. 


Noa Halff is a School of Arts and Sciences sophomore. She is an associate news editor for The Daily Targum. Follow her on Twitter @NoaHalff for more.


Noa Halff

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