Creating Opportunities in Times of Uncertainty

By Ali Menard ’22 and Shannon Lytle ’22 – Davidson College Women’s Soccer and Career Advantage Ambassadors

All over the world, professionals, students, workers, and families are being forced to find new ways to adapt and find their new normal. Nevertheless, life must go on. During times like these, we are reminded of how fortunate we are to be a part of the Davidson College community. We cannot thank the advisors, staff, athletic departments, and administration enough for the way they have expressed support, made accommodations, and shown understanding during these difficult times. 

Josh King, Assistant Director for Athletic Career Development, is an example of an advisor that has taken this challenge and turned it into an opportunity for growth. In mid-March, after students were sent home for the remainder of the semester, he reached out to multiple student-athletes who had an active presence at the Career Center. He recognized that it was going to be more difficult to connect with Davidson students considering most were displaced from campus. With this obstacle in mind, he decided it would be beneficial to cultivate a team of students to help bridge the gap that would now exist. It was from this idea that Josh and Kayla Corbin created a group of five student-athletes, now known as Career Advantage Ambassadors, that we are honored to be a part of.

 The job of a Career Advantage Ambassador consists of two main tasks. First, to establish a connection with specific athletic teams and inform them of the events that will be held each week. Second, to promote the main events that the Career Advantage Program and the Center for Career Development are hosting. To do this, Ambassadors use their social media platforms, and any influence they have within organizations throughout campus. Oftentimes, the job includes creating graphic designs, learning from professionals in the marketing and business world about how to improve our individual skills, and serving as a resource for all student-athletes!  

As both teammates and friends, we quickly discovered that we were both interested in pursuing careers in the business world. Together we began attending as many events as we could to learn more about the complex field of business and to practice our networking skills. Specifically, during our freshman year, we attended a session called “Girls Who Invest.” After the event, we could not stop talking about how inspired we felt. From this inspiration, we decided that Davidson College needed a platform for women to explore the predominantly male business world. Shortly after, the idea to create the Women in Business club was born. Although a liberal arts college provides endless opportunities for critical thinking, we desired a place where women aspiring to have futures in business could meet, share ideas, attend events together, support and inspire each other. In order to make this club a reality, we spent long hours with the Career Center and with Jamie Stamey who provided direction, advice, and support. Today, we have more than 40 young women in our club and continue to have frequent communication with the advisors within the Career Center regarding upcoming events that may benefit and/or interest our members. 

First, we were teammates on the Women’s Soccer team, then we were best friends, and now we are work partners. In our first two years at Davidson, we have learned what it is like to be a teammate in all aspects of life, not just on the field. We demand and expect the best from each other, we push each other, we work together, and we encourage each other in all facets of our Davidson lives. We are grateful to have someone we can depend on, both on and off the field. We look forward to continuing our work together; advocating and working with the Career Center, developing Women in Business further, and providing our members with as many opportunities and as much support as possible. 

We feel fortunate to serve as Career Advantage Ambassadors because the Career Center and its advisors have played a pivotal role in the development of us as young business women and in helping us explore our future careers. We hope that as Ambassadors, and in conjunction with the marketing resources and opportunities the Career Center offers, we are able to encourage others to utilize our fantastic advisors and to experience the opportunities that are continuously offered.

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