Wednesday, July 14, 2010

Just in case…

Just in case any of the Dartmouth grads out there forgot how useless Career Services can be…let me remind you. It’s completely useless.

Undergrad example: I once used the advice listed on their website and wrote an “explosive” resume for myself. This is a resume that includes extended descriptions for absolutely every activity you could list – so that you have everything on paper. I brought this unformatted, 3 page resume in to discuss which activities and descriptions were most important to include. In my rushed, 15 minute meeting, I was essentially told that I should extend the margins and use smaller font so that all 3 pages could fit onto one. Oh and I was told to use somewhat shorter descriptions. In a final plea at the end of the meeting to explain that “YES I KNOW A RESUME IS NOT SUPPOSED TO BE 3 PAGES BUT I FOLLOWED THE DIRECTIONS ON YOUR WEBSITE”, the counselor suggested that I take out the bullet on being captain my lacrosse team. Because that doesn’t show leadership or teamwork or anything important.

More recent example: The harsh truth of my dream job is that it is unpaid. (Let’s not talk about what this means I can expect for the rest of my life.) Meaning I have to seek funding and grants in order to not spend every cent in my savings account. Most all of the grants I know about are for current Dartmouth undergrads. So, I swallowed my pride and decided to give Career Services another call. I was, of course, interrogated as to the reason for my appointment. And reminded that it’s corporate recruiting time for the sophomores, so I should respect that Career Services is very busy preparing the next generation of iBankers and I really shouldn’t get in the way if I know what’s good for Dartmouth.

I calmly explained that I just wanted a meeting to discuss options and resources for funding for an unpaid volunteer opportunity. Mostly, I was curious if there are federal databases that I should be using.

I was directed to the “Funding for Unpaid Internships” section of their website.

I informed them that I have already looked at this tab and found it most unhelpful so I was wondering if I could meet with somebody to discuss other options.

They asked me if I had met with the Tucker Foundation.

I informed them that Tucker funding is only for current undergrads.

They asked me if I had met with the Dickey Foundation.

I told them yes, but that the next funding deadline was not until February.

They asked me if I had met with the Rockefeller Center.

I again informed them that these grants are only for current undergrads.

They asked me if I had met with the Student Employment Office.

I asked them why I should.

They told me that I might be able to work while volunteering.

“Umm…maybe I didn’t explain this clearly enough. I’ve already graduated. And I’m going to be in Rwanda. And this is like a real job. Even if the SEO could find me a job in Rwanda, it wouldn’t pay me nearly enough and I wouldn’t have time to do it.”

They told me that since I was in Hanover I might as well go meet with them. And then they told me that it’s located in the basement of Thayer.

Thayer is under construction. There is no longer a basement of Thayer.

They did not know where the new office is located.

The ridiculousness concluded with them asking me to send them an email outlining why exactly I feel I need a meeting with a career advisor. Inevitably, they will ignore this email, or use it to re-inform me to go to the Funding for Unpaid Internships tab on their website.

So…to my unemployed friends out there (and there are 2 of you that have requested I mention you as often as possible…to protect the innocent, I will not name you…but you know who you are): this is why you are unemployed. I’m guessing that you tried to go to Career Services early on at Dartmouth, were shoved aside when they realized you weren’t aiming to make lots of money one day (except as a Greenwich housewife with a big library endowment maybe), and became forever discouraged with Career Services. And just in case you hoped it might have changed since…it has not.

If anybody has any suggestions for grants or funding, please let me know -- thanks!

1 comment:

Hypatia said...

Gates Foundation?