On the day of my interview for a summer internship that would allow me to explore my interests in finance and real estate, I stepped into a private room in the Center for Career Excellence and reviewed my prep material.
Wearing my sharpest professional clothing, I was more confident than nervous as I clicked “Join Meeting” on Zoom. I had prepared for this moment and knew that my alumni mentors and career connections were in my corner, cheering me on the whole time. Their support gave me confidence as I illustrated my candidacy with conviction.
A little later, when the hiring team offered me an internship, I felt everything click into place. I achieved not only my goal of obtaining a summer internship to further my skills and knowledge but a summer internship in an industry in which I am eager to gain more hands-on experience.
How did this happen? I believe it’s because, at St. Lawrence, students are the investment. From day one, St. Lawrence—through the First-Year Program—nurtured me with skills in writing, research, and public speaking.
When I worried about having an awkward sophomore year and felt nervous exploring careers, the Sophomore Success Initiative and programs through the Center for Career Excellence guided me through the journey of pursuing opportunities and interests. Rather than simply orbiting the realm of the professional world, I was encouraged—and, importantly, given the tools—to dive in. SLU Connect LIVE gave me the ability to talk to alumni and parents who work in a variety of industries. Enriching, roundtable conversations helped me discover career paths that I was curious to investigate.
Perhaps the most valuable relationship I have fostered has been through the LINC Career Mentoring program. I was matched with Allie Roberts ’16 who has offered an incredible amount of support and guidance in the business and finance industry. Our meetings always consist of conversations that ignite more than a professional relationship, but also a friendship. Allie pushes me toward my goals and helps me think through strategies for achieving them. She’s helped foster my willingness to network and share my interests with other industry professionals.
As a result, I did not pass up the chance to take part in the workshops at the end of winter break which helped me clarify my academic and career goals. In the workshops, I clarified my academic and career goals. This helped me conquer an intimidating task—applying for internships.
I’ve found that sophomore year at St. Lawrence is an empowering, not an awkward, time. I keep learning and building the strengths that matter to me and my future. I enjoy the energy that comes from relying on my skills. It sparks a drive to aim high and make every effort to reach my goals. Not waiting until my junior year to dive into my career journey has given me a competitive advantage over those who do not have the support network I’m grateful to lean on at St. Lawrence.
The University’s investment in my professional success has forged a bond between me and the Laurentian community. I know this bond will last, even past my years here as a student. Like many St. Lawrence alumni, I will not hesitate to talk to curious and open-minded students and help them turn their hopes and dreams into real achievements.