While I enjoy spending time with my family over the Thanksgiving holiday, I have to admit that I look forward to switching off my brain for just a couple days. That isn’t easy though, because this is often the one time of year I get to see them, and I want to hear about their lives and tell them about my own.
Ah, the holidays! Family time: board games, feasting with loved ones and a crackling fire in the living room.
Fall is my favorite season for the weather and the start of school. When I lived in Monrovia, Liberia, there were only 2 seasons: dry and rainy. (Monrovia is the wettest capital city in the world.) Needless to say, I felt out of my element, which made it difficult for me to succeed professionally.
I am experiencing the exact opposite at the University of Mary Washington (UMW).
For the past few semesters, the Center for Career and Professional Development (CCPD) has offered UMW students the option of meeting with a peer (Peer Career Consultant, or PCC for short) for many topics including resume and cover letter reviews and internship searches.
This semester, UMW will graduate its first cohort of Peace Corps Prep graduates.
Peace Corps Prep is a certificate program for undergraduates that centers on one empowering question: How can you prepare yourself to be the best Peace Corps Volunteer you can be? Students in the program combine targeted coursework with hands-on experience in leadership, global fluency, foreign language, and professional development. The skills gained through this program give students a competitive edge when they apply for volunteer service post-graduation.
This semester, three students will complete the program, receiving a Peace Corps Prep Program certificate from the Peace Corps.
Amal Hajjami, Class of 2019 Biology major, is one of the students completing the program this semester. “I wanted the ability to create a resume that catered into the sector I applied to; Youth in Development. The benefits of the program are unique to the individual in the program. For me, it was a program that gave me structure and guidance in essentially preparing me for a job I wanted since high school.”
Amal is currently in the process of applying to the Peace Corps. Sebrine Abdulkadir, majoring in International Affairs with a minor in social justice, as well as Chloe Morton, double majoring in Chemistry and Psychology, will also be graduating from the program this semester.
UMW is one of the leading producers of Peace Corps prep volunteers, taking the 15th spot among U.S. schools with fewer than 5,000 students. Since 1961, UMW has had more than 260 alums volunteer in the Peace Corps.
For more information about the Peace Corps Prep Program, visit the Career Center’s website:
Rose Maddox, Employer Relations Manager, Career Center
EMPLOYMENT OPPORTUNITIES: THIS WAY!
If your winter break conversations with your student circled around and around topics things like: what they can do after they graduate with their particular major, if what field might be a good fit for their talents, or how their diverse interests might be incorporated into a career or graduate school program, the Center for Career and Professional Development (CCPD) is ready to help! Every semester we see students (and alumni) with questions like these. The good news? In most cases, there are answers!
Internships are a hot topic these days. As the job market becomes more competitive, internships provide employers a way to gauge your viability as a candidate in a low-risk way.