Career Ready Bootcamp!

The week before the semester started the Knowlton Center brought 18 sophomore and junior students from back to campus to participate in a 3-day intensive career-readiness program. The students came from all over Denison representing different majors and extracurricular activities all with one goal: to prepare for internships and careers after Denison.

The Students all came together and participated in several preparation workshops with our career coaches. These workshops focused on writing resumes and cover letters, networking, LinkedIn Profiles, and interviewing. Additionally we were all able to participate in a voice training session with Voice Coach from Available Light Theatre, Acacia Duncan. Acacia demonstrated techniques to add confidence to your voice and covered the dos and don’ts of presenting yourself vocally.

The program also included a day business trip to Columbus. There the students toured companies from several different industries and were able to gain a perspective of professional life in Columbus, a hub of employment for recent Denison grads. The trip culminated with a networking event with several Denison alumni. The students were able to practice their networking skills and make professional connections with Denison alumni.

The last day of the program gave the students a chance to apply everything they learned in a series of mock interviews. They were given a chance to perfect their resumes and choose from a list of sample internships to interview for with our career coaches and other professionals around the college. This allowed the students to interview and receive valuable feedback. Later the students participated in a Designing Your Life Workshop, a program offered by the Knowlton Center in conjunction with the Red Fram Lab developed from the strategies of Design Thinking out of Stanford. The workshop allows you to plan several versions of your future and what steps you need to take and when, and is intended to keep your mind open to innovation.

This “Career Ready Bootcamp” is an idea that the Knowlton Center has been thinking of for a while now but was finally able to bring it to fruition this year. The program was a success and we hope to bring it to Denison annually so we can do what we do best: career preparation!

Wisr: Networking Made Easy

Get Wisr.

The Knowlton Center is proud to unveil our newest resource to help make networking made easy. Wisr is a tool that allows you to search for Denison alumni in your field and organize networking conversations. Click this link to get started with Wisr!

You start off by connecting through your LinkdIn account (so make sure your account is up to date!). Once you have entered all of your information, you can start searching for alumni. Your Wisr dashboard will automatically suggest alumni to you, but you can always browse through different industries. Once you find someone you want to connect with you can either message them or request a call. Both are great ways to start learning more. If you request a call, the system will help you schedule a time that works and will send you both an individualized number. All you have to do is call that number and you will be connected. Be sure to have questions prepared!

Networking is a great way to develop professional relationships, learn more about industries, and learn specific information on companies and positions. Building connections can help you with your exploration process and potentially widen job prospects. Wisr helps facilitate this by putting you in contact with alumni who are more than willing to help you out.

Want to learn more about networking? Visit the Knowlton Center in Burton Morgan! We can offer you information on how to build your professional network and sign you up for a networking workshop with one of our career coaches.

Land the Internship? Are you Ready to Make the Most of It?

Land the internship? are you ready to make most of it? - denison-internship-program-2018-presentation.jpg image #0Internships are important.  You know that by now.  An internship provides you the opportunity to develop valuable skills, build your resume, gain experience, grow your network, explore industries and hopefully earn some money. While you might be tired everyone telling you to find an internship, the reality is internships are valuable and necessary.  Perhaps more essential than you initially thought.  Your summer internship may, in fact, be a bit of an extended job interview.  

In 2017 The National Association of Colleges and Employers (NACE) reported that 75% of employers with internship programs indicated the primary focus of these programs was to recruit college graduates for full-time, entry-level positions.  LinkedIn provided some interesting data about the companies utilizing internships as a recruitment tool and their respective conversion rates into employment.   So it’s not a given that your internship will land you a full-time job with the same company but with so many top employers converting interns into employees it definitely suggests you enter your internship prepared to nail it.  

So how do you go into your internship ready to slay it?  Cue the Denison Internship Program is also known as DIP.  DIP provides you a “structured learning experience as you explore the career field and apply academic coursework in the workplace.”  Basically, we are going to help you head into your internship with goals, review your progress during the internship, and help you reflect after your internship to ensure you can articulate just how the internship impacted your career journey.  

PS – if you haven’t landed your internship yet then come see us!  The Knowlton Center offers multiple resources to help you.  Have you checked out our Career Toolkit to learn the basics and get started?  Try attending one of our Career Labs for a more in-depth look at career topics such as “Landing Your Internship”–a topic so important we named a Lab after it!  Finally, work 1-1 with our coaches and peer advisors to be ready to act when the opportunity presents itself.  

Alumni Spotlight: Rishi Dani

Name:  Rishi DaniAlumni Spotlight:  Rishi Dani - FullSizeRender-Rishi-Dani-1.jpg - Image #0
Class Year:  2005
Major(s)/Minor(s):  Mathematics-Economics
Organization Name: CIBC World Markets
Job Title:  Executive Director – Interest Rates Derivatives Sales

What was your career path like?
After Denison I joined JPMorgan as an analyst in their Interest Rate Derivatives Sales team, working with large Corporate clients in the US. In the time since, I have worked at several large multi-national banks including RBS, Nomura and the Canadian Imperial Bank of Commerce. During that time I have focused largely on Interest Rate Derivatives and Structured products, marketing them to large Corporate clients both in the US as well as Latin America.

What do you enjoy most about your job?
I love working in sales as it allows me to interact with clients and has afforded me the opportunity to travel extensively through the US, Latin America and Europe. At the same time, covering Interest Rate Derivatives means I have to follow closely the macro economic trends in the US as well as other major economies of the world which is of strong interest to me. Finally, providing derivative solutions entails coming up with creative ideas and involves a high degree of structuring and problem solving which is a stimulating challenge.

What surprises you most about your career or career path?
While I was at Denison, I always figured I would work in Finance but looking back now, I was woefully unaware of the different opportunities available within finance (investment banking, sales and trading etc). When I was interviewing at JPMorgan, I thought I was interviewing for an Investment Banking job and it turned out I was interviewing for a sales role and that too selling Interest Rate Derivatives – I had no idea what that meant. So looking back now, I had never imagined I would be doing what I am doing today.

How did Denison prepare you for the world after college?
While I was a student, I never appreciated the well rounded education that a liberal arts degree provides. Most of my peers in banking were from Ivy League schools and yet Denison prepared me well enough to keep up with them. For me Denison gave me the ability to think differently and to think outside the box which really set you apart from students who have spent their entire college career focused on just their main degree. On a lighter note, one of the experiences from Denison that helped me immensely was my time working at the Annual Fund which made me very comfortable talking on the phone – something a lot of kids out of school had a tough time adjusting to.

What is the best piece of advice you’ve received throughout your career or what piece of advice would you like to share with others?
I would strongly encourage students to start thinking about what careers they might be interested in and to use the summers between Sophomore and Junior and Junior and Senior years to find relevant internships. I was surprised when I realized the different opportunities within finance and I wish I had a better understanding of those opportunities and maybe I would have pursued a different group. I think Denison’s biggest asset is its Alumni network and I strongly encourage students to use the career center to reach out to alumni in companies they are interested in – as a student I got invaluable advice on jobs, resumes etc from Alumni and in the end I got the interview at JPMorgan through an alum.

Summer Internship Series: Journey on the Path to Find the Cure for Cancer

Neel Kejriwal ’18

National Cancer Institute

My name is Neel Kejriwal, I am a Biochemistry major and currently a senior. Over my summer I had the opportunity to work at one of the top cancer research labs in the country- NCI under the guidance of well renowned scientists from all around the world. It was a three-month experience where I spent the first few weeks shadowing and understanding the roles of the researchers in the field and then actually working on a research project. My project was interesting. It involved fixing and operating a digilab robot which could pipette up and down tumor cells and dispense them into 96 well plates in forms of microdroplets. This was created in a 4X4 array of drops. To these drops, drugs of different concentrations were added and using accurate imaging, the results were displayed. It was particularly fascinating, in my opinion to see how different fields of research played a vital role in studies primarily in the chemistry and biology fields, through modern innovations.

The robotics system I was working with was a sophisticated piece of equipment which was bought 2 years ago but was unused since it was very difficult to operate. I was given the task to understand the mechanism of operating it and perform the experiments. This was a very useful contribution to the national cancer institute since there is so much potential which microdroplets of cells could have with drug resistance. My results initially kept leading to errors but with constant observations, tweeks, and changes, I came up with a concrete protocol which matched my hypothesis.

In addition to the fantastic experience I had working for the organization, living on my own by renting a room in a single-family house gave me a perspective on independent living. My lab was in the middle of an army base called fort Detrick, so it was also really interesting to see the tight security and the safety precautions that was standardized in these government buildings.

Overall, my summer experience gave me a very broad experience on skills which would help me in my career into pharmacology and research and allowed me to have the exposure to work for a public based organization such as the national cancer institute. I have made some major contributions which might be published with more research and would help advance more innovations in science.   

Summer Internship Series: Rocky Mountain High Volunteering

Isaac Bertman ‘19
Marketing Intern, Volunteers for Outdoor Colorado, Denver, Colorado

Summer internship series: rocky mountain high volunteering - voc-logo-small-e1506627797395.png image #0My name is Isaac Bertman, I’m in the Philosophy, Politics and Economics program at Denison and over the summer I had the privilege of working with Volunteers for Outdoor Colorado (VOC) as a marketing intern. VOC is a Denver-based nonprofit that is dedicated to motivating and enabling Colorado’s citizens to take care of their natural areas. Throughout the project season, which includes all summer and part of autumn, VOC organizes a variety of trail building and ecological restoration volunteer projects all across the state. As the population of Colorado is growing at a breakneck rate, this sort of volunteer stewardship is crucial to prevent the degradation of Colorado’s outdoor spaces. 

As a VOC intern, I had a variety of different tasks. I worked with the marketing and outreach departments to recruit volunteers for projects, both on the phone and via email. I also worked as a fundraiser by asking for donations from local businesses and organizations. One of my favorite parts of the job was when I was actually able to go out on projects and help build or maintain the trails we were working on. Early in the summer, I was trained in proper trail building techniques, so sometimes I was even given my own crew of volunteers to lead.

The best part of this position, and what I think sets it apart from other internships, was that it included a capstone project. This project is chosen by the intern early in the summer and steadily worked on through the ten-week period. The purpose of the capstone is not only to provide the intern with a project that they can have almost complete creative independence over, it is also meant to leave VOC with something useful at the end of the summer. My capstone project involved research on various types of nonprofit coalitions, as VOC is preparing to become an active member of a nonprofit stewardship coalition. At the end of the internship, I gave a presentation and handed in my research paper, which VOC will likely use to help guide their strategy going forward.

This was my first time working for a nonprofit organization and I enjoyed it for a few reasons. Firstly the staff was very committed to the objectives of the organization, which made the office environment very fun and friendly. Every veteran of VOC, especially my direct supervisor Jamie Burke, was very helpful and would patiently answer my many intern questions. Also, the nonprofit environment meant that the lines between job titles were a little blurred, and oftentimes people would help each other where they were needed. This was especially fun when three or four staff members made it out of the office to work on one of the projects together.

I’d like to thank my supervisor Jamie Burke who was enormously helpful in getting me set up and oriented at the office. Ann Baker Easley, Executive Director, and Dean Winstanley, Director of Statewide Stewardship were my two main contacts for my capstone project and I could not have made any progress on it without their help. In fact, I would like to thank and acknowledge everyone in the VOC office, as they all assisted me at some point or another. Without them, this summer would not have been the excellent learning experience that it was.

Summer Internship Series: Getting Dumped by an Internship 4 Days Before the Start Date

Brenner Bodell ’18
Airtame, New  York City

The beginning of my summer was full of fun and excitement. I had just gotten back from being abroad in London and had secured an internship working for a London start-up in New York City. I spent the weeks leading up to my time in New York City hanging out with family and friends anxiously waiting to start work and move to New York City. This was all threatened when the day before I was to leave for New York, and 4 days before I was supposed to report to my internship I received an email out of the blue explaining my internship had been canceled. The internship I had secured months before and had signed an offer letter for. Shocked and faced with a now possible extremely unproductive summer I decided to go to New York anyway and try my luck at finding a last-minute position. Luckily I was found a new position on a tech startup website and was interviewed and hired within a week of getting to New York. This job at a company called Airtame was actually a better position for me anyway! I was given way more opportunities and able to work with a young extremely innovative company that has put me in great positions for my future Job search. Denison has taught me many things. Resilience is definitely one of those things and it really came in handy this summer when I thought the summer I had planned was in jeopardy. I strongly believe my diverse education prepared me very well for this summer and my internship. This opportunity has led to more opportunities as I am working for the same startup part time now! I am thankful for the Denison community in continuously supporting me! 

Meet The Peers

We have a great line-up of peer advisors ready to help you take on a number of career related issues!  Learn a little bit more about these fantastic career ambassadors. 

Meet the peers - fullsizerender-150x150.jpg image #0Alex Frank is a senior majoring in Psychology and Cinema.  Alex shared “I’m so excited to be a part of the Knowlton Center team this year! I am thrilled to be a part of a team of hardworking and like minded peer advisors in order to help spread the word about the awesome opportunities and guidance the Knowlton center provides — along with learning about all things resumes!”   Fun fact about Alex…she had a provisional patent on a medical device she engineered when she was 16!  You can make an appointment or drop in to meet with Alex on Tuesday from 11-1 p.m. in Burton Morgan 306 or from 7-9 p.m. in the library.  

Meet the peers - unnamed-150x150.jpg image #1Sophie Lovett is a senior majoring in Mathematics and Environmental Studies.  Sophie shared, “I have found so much excitement and energy as I have searched for and obtained internships and jobs throughout my college career. I am really looking forward to instilling that same excitement in my peers that come visit the Knowlton Center!”   Fun fact about Sophie…she has been a flower girl in 7 weddings!  You can drop in to meet with Sophie Monday between 2:30 and 3:20, Wednesday between 2:30 and 3:30 or on Thursday between 2:30 and 4:30. 

Meet the peers - headshot-r.elfman-150x150.jpg image #2Rachel Elfman is a senior majoring in Economics and French.  Rachel shared, “I am excited to be a peer advisor because the Knowlton Center has been very helpful as I have explored career paths and looked for internships. I encourage all students to start early and take advantage of the many resources available, including resume and cover letter assistance, mock interviews, and general career exploration advice. I look forward to working with you in the Knowlton Center!”  Fun fact about Rachel…she studied abroad in Aix-en-Provence, France last semester and in addition to speaking French, she is also learning Spanish!  You can drop in to meet with Rachel Monday, Tuesday or Wednesday between 2:30 and 4:30. 


Welcome to the 17-18 Academic Year

Welcome to the 17-18 academic year - malinhank-img1244-300x300.jpg image #0

Hank Malin, Executive Director, Knowlton Center for Career Exploration

Hank Malin P’15  
Executive Director, Knowlton Center for Career Exploration

The Knowlton Center for Career Exploration team welcomes you to the 2017-2018 academic year! Regardless of how you spent the last few months, we hope you had a great experience. 

I just joined the Knowlton Center at Executive Director earlier this summer, although I joined the Denison family six years ago when my older son started here as a member of the Class of 2015. My professional background includes 14 years in education as a teacher and admissions professional, followed by 20 years at General Mills working in the human resources function. I am delighted to be back in higher education. I have learned through my early conversations with some of you that the career exploration process can feel overwhelming at times. That was my experience when I was in college as well, but I encourage you to own the process and come see us and ask for help!

The Knowlton Center team has been preparing all summer for your arrival.  We’ve made some changes to physical space and shortened our coaching appointments from 60 to 30 minutes so we can expand our program offerings.  Additionally, while retaining our commitment to true career exploration, our career coaches will be offering a focus on specialized career paths.  Finally, we are launching the concept of “labs” (sessions on topics ranging from a general introduction to the career exploration process to resume writing to networking and landing a great internships or job.)  These changes were made to better help you more fully explore your future career and life!

You’ll hear from us regularly throughout this year, including the weekly Knowlton Note. I hope you’ll take the time to read what we send you and to fully engage in your future!  Have a great year and hope to see you at the Knowlton Center soon!

Listen, we need to talk about commitment.

I know, we’re all millennials—I mark “interested” on Facebook events so I’ll get a notification an hour before the event so I can decide then if I want to go—I get it. If something isn’t on my calendar, there’s a good chance that I’ll forget to do it (I’m working on that). But some things are different.