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First in Series of Articles on Alumni Placement Office Advises Upperclassmen to Register Soon



The following article is the first of a series of seven, dealing with the University's Alumni Placement Office, written for the Crimson by Donald M. Moyer '27 of that office, and scheduled to appear during January.

That alumni placement is primarily for the consideration of graduates and Seniors is a natural supposition. The very word "alumni" is misleading, and the annual invitation to seniors to register with the Alumni Placement Office is supporting evidence.

On the other hand, the Placement Office bulletin, published by the University, states, "Students may register at any time during their college course, but are urged to do so not later than their third year of residence and earlier if they will."

Why, then, should alumni placement concern Juniors, Sophomores, even Freshmen? Briefly the answer is, "in order to get ready, to make plans." Because the prospective doctor of medicine must as an underclassman take hood of his profession's requirements, so any undergraduate must prepare himself for whatever other career he decides upon.

Without foresight and planning the pre-medical student may find himself at the end of his Senior year unable to enter medical school. So, also, the pre-business student who falls to set an objective and plan ahead may find at graduation that he is unfit to get a job.

Despite the fact that the pre-business student need make no curricular adjustment to qualify for a job, he may make preparations of an extra-curricular sort which may well require his attention two or three years before he applies for work.

Obviously if a Sophomore has made no decision at all regarding his career, the need for reaching one should be apparent, for if he chooses medicine or engineering or science he will then have to plan his course of study in college accordingly.

Let us assume, however, that this Sophomore has made business his aim. What is there for him to do three years ahead which will better help him to reach his goal?

First of all he must decide on the sort of business he wants. To this end he must do much investigating, not only of business opportunities but of his own aptitudes. He should do a great deal of reading, and talk with many people. If possible he should have one or two tryout experiences during his summer vacations.

When his choice has been made he must then seek a job. Contacts to be made with companies and alternative opportunities to be appraised will require more planning and time than is commonly supposed.

One may argue that six weeks, six months, or at most a year is ample time to solve these problems, and so it might be if one could devote himself entirely to the task. But, a busy Senior year preparing for divisionals allows little leisure to pursue such aims. Furthermore, the choice of some field of work is not psychologically a matter of spontaneous determination; it is rather an evolutionary process, one during which ideas grow and coalesce and have a chance to mature.

The undergraduate who waits until his senior year to consider these questions will find the pressure of securing congenial employment warping his judgment as he seeks more and more earnestly, toward Commencement Day, to establish himself satisfactorily in some job.

Without a backlog of systematic planning and investigation he may well be forced to strike an opportunist note which will reduce his selection of some business career to mere chance or worse.

Alumni Placement, then, although it is consummated in the Senior year, has its roots early in college. The Placement Office, therefore, welcomes particularly all underclassmen who wish to discuss any problem concerning choice of a career or search for a job. In fact only with early registrants can the Office render its best service.

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