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The Carletonian

Thirst for new externships quenched

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As a result of the Parent Advisory Council’s efforts, the number of externship positions has increased from approximately 90 in December 2013 to 150 this year.

The Parent Advisory Council is a volunteer group compromised of Carleton parents. The volunteers’ efforts toward increasing the number of sites for externships and internships has played a crucial role in increasing the number of externship positions available for Carleton College students.

The increase in the externship positions is an exciting opportunity for more students to become involved in the externship program, and be exposed to a particular field of interest.

Some of the popular externship programs in the past have included the Angel’s Forum, Frog Design, MIAC Analytics and Stanford University School of Medicine programs. Brian Murphy, the program director for internships and experiential learning elaborated: “an externship is more like an advanced glimpse into a career field.

There isn’t really enough time for a student to be trained in something but it’s a good way for them to learn about a career field and gain some hands-on-experience.”

Sara White, a sophomore with an interest in political science and educational studies, is exemplary of the positive experience that students experience through these externships. Last year, Ms. White participated in the Dalton School externship in New York City for one week. Her primary task was to observe organization frameworks, classroom management, and specific lessons modeled by Dalton educators.

Having felt disheartened at the authoritative nature and impracticality of the teaching profession from watching teachers at her high school, White had hoped to “see some other sort of environment where teachers were working to hopefully become a little hap- pier with the teaching profession again.” She further explained:

“[My externship experience] reminded me that if I want to go into the teaching profession, there are many options as to where I can teach. That I can find a place where I would feel like it was a rewarding experience to be a teacher and feel like I had adequate support. It also made me less scared about working in cities.”

Although applying to these externships may seem daunting at first sight, there are plenty of resources for student to take advantage of if they need assistance with resumes and cover letters. Students who may already have a resume may make an appointment with the staff at the Career Center to edit their resume. The other option is to receive assistance from the Student Career Advisors (SCAs) during walk-in-hours which are from 8:30am to 5pm on weekdays at the Career Center. In addition, the writing tutors in the writing center have been trained to help students write resumes and cover letters. Mr. Murphy stressed the importance of utilizing these resources: “It’s not intuitive. Resume and cover letter writing. Especially the cover letter. For an externship it’s even a little different from an internship or a job.”

Once students have their resumes and cover letter ready, the next step for them is to submit their application by the October 8th application deadline. At Carleton College, the externships during this winter break are from November 30th to December 18th. However, the length of each of the externship varies from 1-3 weeks. As Ms. White, explained: “I think externships are really cool because they are so short. You can have a really cool experience somewhere in the country where you are not used to, looking into some career field.”

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