Life After the Bubble: Civic Engagement Beyond Wesleyan

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I know it seems a little premature to start talking about life after Wesleyan before you have even moved in to your first dorm room. And in a way, you are completely right. But you know what they say about it being over before you know it? Ask absolutely any person who recently graduated. Heck, ask any sophomore! You may not notice it at first, but if high school was a race to the finish line with the prize being college looming ahead of you, then college is a countdown until the rest of your life begins.

I hope that doesn’t sound too melodramatic!

Anyway, college can be incredibly awesome. However the real world is not the hellish apocalyptic landscape some people make it out to be. In fact, it can be quite nice, especially when you have spent time investing in your future. Getting civically involved is a great way to do this. First of all, volunteering and getting involved with our programs is a great way to get a foot in the door in your preferred industry. Those interested in early education can gain valuable experience in working with different age-groups in a variety of educational contexts. The skills needed to coordinate a program through the Office of Community Service are applicable in almost any context you may want to work in later. Through exploring the programs OCS offers, you can get an inside glimpse on an industry you are interested in and make sure you are ready to continue working in said sector.

Through the Patricelli Center for Social Entrepreneurship, students have an unparalleled opporutnity to not only gain a great skillset through workshops, but also connect with organizations and alums to build thier professional network. Not to brag, but the PCSE does its best to maintain contact with alums who are movers and shakers in social entrepreneurship. Currently we have alums who have founded or are working in the following organizations: Texts.com, Shining HOpe for Communities, MINDS Foundation, Nike, Echoing Green, and more. Through these connections we hope to help students get much needed advice and guidance to embark upon their own social entrepreneurship careers.

So don’t underestimate the value of getting involved during your undergraduate career. According to our new director of the Wesleyan Career Center:

        For young people just entering the job market, one of the biggest hurdles is the lack of a professional network.
       Volunteering can be a great way not to just develop skills, but also meet people who can speak to your worth and introduce         you to others in your field of interest.

So come drop in and learn more about how we can help you prepare for your future! For more information about how volunteering can increase your job prospects, click here. If this is your first time visiting ENGAGE, check out earlier posts in our series! Get welcomed, and learn about how to get involved in the classroom and outside of it. Also check out our posts on how to ENGAGE your portfolio and meet me, the new Civic Engagement Fellow!

Volunteering-infographic

 

Jelisa Adair

I am the Civic Engagement Fellow for 2013-2014. While a student at Wesleyan I double majored in Psychology and Feminist, Gender, and Sexuality Studies and completed a joint thesis during my senior year. I am interested in issues of social justice, mental health, media, and global welfare. 

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