This summer Elizabeth Pargaman ’16 is getting down to business, as a Dell Inc. intern in Round Rock, Texas. An Austin College pilot career readiness program—funded in part by donors like you —opened the door, connecting students to potential mentors.
Over the past two years, the college developed and tested new, strategic career readiness initiatives focused on learning where students stand in their level of career preparedness. The efforts empower students to improve, as well as connect them with Austin College alumni, parents and employers.
In 2014, Elizabeth and alumna Jennifer Jones Newbill ’95 were introduced through a pilot summer mentoring program. Jennifer, a senior manager in Dell’s Global Talent division and soon-to-be ’Roo mentor, reviewed names of Austin College students residing near Austin. Elizabeth and Jennifer met and moved forward.
Empowering students and professionals to connect—and to connect where it’s convenient. That’s the key. According to Jennifer, the excellent “quality, caliber and intellectual horsepower of the student body” makes the process that simple and easy.
Students, such as Elizabeth Pargaman, are learning it pays to start thinking about their career sooner than later. Students as early as sophomore year are participating in opportunities like a Career Readiness Check, which introduces students to two professionals and critiques their preparation efforts.
More and more ’Roo professionals are assisting students, making a direct impact on their lives. Over 10 percent of Austin College students have participated in one or more of the career readiness pilots. That’s just a start. It’s time to expand and continue improving. A $100 donation to career readiness today can sponsor two professionals to interview and mentor seven to 10 students.
Thank you to the nearly 200 professionals in the Austin College community who have participated as mentors and provided the seed funding for these pilots. Will you continue to join us on the journey ahead?
Other ways donors have a transformational impact on Austin College students: