I just finished reviewing a senior’s resume. She was unsure where to put the awards she received at the end of the year, and it’s no wonder. The information on her resume would barely fit on one page. Somehow, though, we managed to cut a few words here and there. Everything still fits on one page.
As I sit here looking at her resume, it suddenly hits me that I’ve known this student since she first came to Davidson four years ago. I met her in one of the Davidson 101 classes that all first-year students are required to attend. She was one of the students who came up afterwards and asked where our office was, and could she make an appointment to have her MBTI test interpreted? That was the beginning of seeing her once or twice a month. A lot of students are like that. They start using our resources and services early, and by the time they graduate, we’ve gotten to know them personally.
This student did make that appointment, and later made another appointment to work on her resume, and then another appointment after that one to find out about an interest test – the Strong Interest Inventory – which she took to help get an idea of what to major in. Whenever we had workshops she was interested in, I’d see her sitting in one of the chairs, notepad in hand, jotting down something she thought interesting. She was one of those students who considered her classes important, but also practical preparation for a job just as important, too. When she studied abroad, she was also working on getting an internship by contacting alumni to network with. She would email employers and alumni, and her networking paid off when she met and interned with an alumn who showed her what the field of advertising was about. She was hooked. Now this student has graduated and is heading to the “big apple” in a month to start her full-time job.
There are other students that we get to know like we have this student. They become so engaged in what we do that they become part of our office community. That’s what I think about when I think of the term “Davidson Community.” We get to know these students so well that they help us out with student representative activities that sometimes come up. For example, sometimes they will help interview candidates, assist students with practicing case interviews, greet employers, or talk with other students about their experiences seeking internships or jobs in Davidson 101 sessions. Their names come up often among our staff. And long after they graduate we still remember them, and talk about “the year that so-and-so” was here.
That’s what I’m thinking about as I look at this student’s resume. She won’t be here next year and I’ll miss her. But that’s part of the job. We get to know students so well that they become more than just a student to us. Sure, another student will come in the office and the same process will begin, but he or she won’t be like this student. (That person will be different, but in a good way.) Still, she’ll stop by when she comes back for alumni events, along with our other students. She might even talk her company into hiring Davidson students. (The Davidson cycle.)
Anyway, I shake my head and put aside her resume. It’s time to get back to work. The phone is ringing in my office letting me know there’s a student waiting with a resume for me to review. Maybe a first-year trying to get a head-start? …