Careers for the Common Good

“When I was growing up, we had to make choices.  Were you going to go into business, were you going to be a social worker…were you going to go into government?  Today, those walls have come down.  This generation says it doesn’t work like that anymore.  We’ve got big problems to solve, and we’re going to go about doing that.  And they want to bring all that they have.” -Pam Omidyar, Co-Founder of Omidyar Network, at the launch of the Georgetown Center for Social Impact and Innovation

Last Wednesday evening we welcomed 168 students and 55 alumni into Fisher Colloquium (the sleek event space within the Rafik Hariri Building) for the at the 8th Annual Careers for the Common Good.  Of all of our events, this one holds special significance because it focuses on educating students on the employment that is available to them if they want to give back to society while trying to earn a living.   A large part of the Georgetown identity is wrapped up in the notion that “Students are challenged to engage in the world and become men and women in the service of others, especially the most vulnerable and disadvantaged members of the community.”

With the launch of the Beeck Center for Social Impact and Innovation, Georgetown is will be paying even more attention to the new and varied professions that the Millennial generation is seeking as they try to bring positive world change through innovation. Alumni Career Services hopes to be a partner in showcasing both traditional nonprofit careers as well as those newly created roles that defy former boundaries (e.g. Director Corporate Social Responsibility, Sustainability Expert, Chief Listening Officer).  As stated in Pam Omidyar’s quote at the top, students and young alumni are rejecting the idea that there are only a select few paths to go down upon graduation.  It’s an exciting time for careers, and we hope you’ll share with us any trends that you are seeing in the marketplace or positions you think we need to represent at next year’s Careers for the Common Good.





Georgetown is headed to SXSW. Are you?  4 events are happening for Hoyas – we hope you’ll join us! #GUatSxSW

Georgetown SxSWedu Panel
: Designing the Future University from the Inside
Wednesday, March 5, 2014 
1:30-2:30 PM
Why college? Is the degree doomed? Can universities be unbundled? Higher education is at a critical juncture point. We believe that the decisions we make over the next 2-3 years will determine what Georgetown is going to look like 20-30 years from now.  Our panel will convene “ed” (academic) and “tech” (digital, technology) to discuss how universities can be proactive in their evolution amidst the potential disruptions in higher education. We’ll share how we’re experimenting with ways to deliver a valued education and using a university-wide design challenge to explore the future(s) of the university

Georgetown Reception
Wednesday, March 5, 2014
6-8:30 PM
Malverde at La Condesa: 400 B W 2nd Street, Austin, TX
Join us for cocktails and conversation with education thought-leaders, our senior University leadership, and fellow alumni. Featuring Robert M Groves, Ph.D, Provost, Lisa Davis, Chief Information Officer, Randall Bass, Ph.D, Vice Provost for Education. Space in limited.
RSVP here by February 27
Host: Alex Shoghi, B’04

Redesigning the Future of Georgetown
Friday, March 7th
Conjunctured Coworking: 1309 East 7th Street, Austin, TX
Help us imagine the Future of Higher Learning at Georgetown. Dr. Randy Bass, Vice Provost for Education, will lead us through a lab exercise modeled on an undergraduate design course to explore issues facing higher education. We will pick a point in the future, define the features of that world, and create a Georgetown that will most effectively produce leaders of industry and society.
Invite-Only. RSVP here to Molly ( by February 28 

Georgetown Meetup
Saturday, March 8, 2014 
Little Woodrow’s: 520 W 6th Street, Austin, TX
Meet fellow creative, digitally-savvy Hoyas and watch the Hoyas taken on Big East rival Villanova

Top 10 Tips for Attending Conferences

In the spirit of ACS attending the recent CASE conference in Baltimore, here are a few tips for making the most of your next professional conference!

1.  Justify your trip.  It’s always easier to justify the trip to your employer if you are representing your institution/organization/company as a speaker on best practices.  If you aren’t able to present, offer to formally share your discoveries/knowledge/contacts with colleagues when you return.

2.  Look at the sessions in advance.  Map out the ones that look like they would have the most impact on your work.  If there are two concurrent sessions that look great, sit in the back of the room so you can scoot out of one to get to the other.  See who’s coming and who you want to connect with.  Even better, connect with them before the conference to set up a time to meet while there.

3.  Network.  Yes, this is an obvious one, but sometimes the sessions themselves aren’t the value in the conference – it’s the connections you make while you are there.  If you’re an introvert, networking can exhausting. Stick to one-on-one conversations and take a break every once in a while to recharge.

4. Recharge.  Conferences can really renew your enthusiasm for your work and provide inspiration – not to mention give you a break from your usual routine.  While attending the social outings is important for networking and having some fun, also use this opportunity to rest, relax, and recharge.

5. Pack your bag.  Check the weather in the city where you are heading. I once wore sandals on the plane to a conference in Chicago in early April.  Read: freezing. I ended up at the store buying a coat and shoes! Bring layers – hotels are often cold. Wear comfy shoes.  Bring a notebook, snacks, water around with you.

6. Divide & conquer.  If you are headed to a conference with colleagues try not to attend all the same sessions.  Divide up and then share the information later.

7. Pack business cards. Duh.  See #3.  Even better – make notes on other people’s business cards to jog your memory as to what you connected about.

8.  Create content.  Utilize your time at the conference to enhance your personal brand.  Tweet, facebook, blog… whatever tool you use, let people know where you are and what you’re learning.

9. Talk to vendors.  At least the ones that look promising. Instead of having to do hour long phone conversations you have them all in one place and at your fingertips.  Gather all the information you can. Plus, sometimes they have fun prizes and raffles!

10. Maximize your time.  Why not combine a few business trips and schedule client meetings or other events around your conference attendance and schedule?

Bonus: Put on your out-0f-office email to let people know you may not reply immediately to their inquiry.  That way you don’t have to spend the entire time on your smartphone.

If you get a few good nuggets of information, a couple of great contacts, and feel inspired to go back to the office, consider the conference a win!

photo source:

ACS Goes to CASE

This past Monday and Tuesday my colleague Whitney Pezza (who you may know as the Hoya Gateway program manager) and I were fortunate enough to attend the Council for Advancement and Support of Education (CASE) District II conference in Baltimore. CASE is “a professional association serving educational institutions and the advancement professionals who work on their behalf in alumni relations, communications, development, marketing and allied areas.” The District II conference is designed to bring together universities and independent schools from New York, Delaware, Pennsylvania, Maryland, New Jersey, Ontario, Puerto Rico, US Virgin Islands, District of Columbia, and West Virginia.  Throughout the two day summit, participants have access to a variety of sessions where best practices and programming ideas are shared.

What I love about CASE is how it displays the true spirit of education.  Each participant is there to both learn and teach, and there are no boundaries to what success secrets people are willing to share.  Whereas a business leader may want to hold his cards close to the proverbial vest, professionals in Higher Education are encouraged to share tips as though they are consultants for other universities. Since many universities have only a small staff dedicated to Alumni Relations and Career Services, is wonderful to step outside of our team and recognize the larger Higher Ed community that we are a part of.  Together we seek to have a positive influence over the way alumni connect with their alma maters and fellow graduates.

Our experience was enhanced by the fact that we also were asked to present on the virtual services we provide in our office.  Naturally we loved representing Georgetown and explaining what we do to try and serve a wide reach of alumni using limited resources.  Our goal was to show our colleagues in Higher Ed that they must begin to place more stock in serving alumni through career related programming outside of a traditional counseling session.

We were reminded of the uniqueness of our office setting and our fantastic alumni, and we left the conference feeling extremely grateful to be serving under the Hoya mission.

 ImageGeorgetown staff members from Development and Alumni Career Services at CASE.

ImageBeautiful view from the Baltimore Marriott!

ImageAttending the Accolades Reception where Hoya Gateway was honored in the “Best Practices in Alumni Relations” category.

What We’re Reading This Week

FastCompany: Why Mindfulness is the Antidote to Multitasking

Quotable: “Multitasking is like watching a cable news channel: you’ve got one or more pundits yapping at the same time as you are dealing with the infinite scroll of sports scores and breaking news headlines. While you’re being hit with much more “information” at once, you retain less–since you can’t filter out what you need to pay attention to from what you should neglect.”

FastCompany: 6 Ways to Use Less Energy to Get More Done

Quotable: “If the workday is a marathon, 3 p.m. might be that 20-mile mark when you hit your wall–the six-mile stretch that marathon runners claim feels like hell.”

Forbes: Ten Ways Companies Drive Away Talent

Quotable: “Most employers, sad to say, do a better job of driving talented people away than reeling them in, both during the selection process and after the talented person comes on board as a new employee.”

Via @LisaDavisCIO Colleges Need to Do a Better Job of Career Development

Quotable: “Colleges need to help students transform what they learn into marketable skills that businesses cherish.”