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Professional Preparation

Preparation for Professional Schools: The Carleton curriculum does not provide programs which are recommended for all students intending to enter a particular professional school upon completion of their BA degree. Although there are no special programs designated as pre-law, pre-medicine, pre-ministerial, and so on, Carleton does have a pre-law and a pre-med adviser; each year many Carleton graduates continue their education in various professional schools. At Carleton, a regular program of studies in one of the established major fields is generally recommended as the best preparation for further training. In consultation with their faculty advisers and the department chair, students can arrange a program of study which best suits their own needs and objectives, without restriction to one program which is adjudged the best for all circumstances and cases.

Students planning to enter any of the professions listed below should see the chair of their department and the appropriate pre-professional adviser. The staff at the Career Center can provide assistance to students who are seeking more information about these career fields as well as internship and other exploratory opportunities information related to these careers. The following comments may be helpful for those who plan to specialize later.

ARCHITECTURE: Graduate schools of architecture do not require a specific major but most require or recommend drawing (ARTS 110, see also ARTS 113 and 210), calculus, and physics. A portfolio of visual materials is also required; students may want to take additional courses in studio art in order to build up their portfolio. Courses in the history of art and architecture are further recommended. For information consult the chair of the Department of Art and Art History.

BUSINESS AND MANAGEMENT: Carleton does not offer courses in business and governmental administration, yet a large proportion of its graduates seek and obtain careers in the management of business firms, government agencies, and nonprofit enterprises such as hospitals, schools, and fine arts centers. Potential employers as well as graduate schools of business, public policy, and law, urge students to take several courses in economics and selected courses in mathematics, especially computer programming and statistics. Interested students can discuss careers in these fields with the chair or any member of the economics department.

CHEMISTRY: The American Chemical Society recommends the following courses for certification: Chemistry 123, 230, 233, 234, 301, 302, 320, 343, 344, 351, 352 and two more advanced courses; plus research experience.

EDUCATION: Preparation for Careers in Public Education: In most states, teaching licensure is a basic requirement for a career in public education, whether as a classroom teacher, administrator, counselor, librarian, or in a variety of supervisory positions. Students planning a teaching career in public education should consult a member of the Educational Studies Department early in their first year.

Programs leading to 5-12 teaching licensure are available at Carleton in the areas of: communication arts (English), mathematics, life sciences, earth sciences and social studies (American studies, African/African American studies, economics, history, political science, psychology, and sociology and anthropology). 7-12 licensure preparation is available in chemistry and physics; K-12 licensure preparation is available in visual arts and world languages (French, German, Spanish). For other fields Carleton students have completed their chosen major and then met professional requirements for licensure through a fifth year at another institution, usually earning a master’s degree in elementary education.

The teacher education program at Carleton College is accredited by the Minnesota Department of Children, Families, and Learning and is in full compliance with Federal Title II regulations for disclosure of state-mandated examination pass rates. For 2002-2003 through 2009-2010, the Carleton licensure candidates pass rates were 100 percent for all areas; a detailed disclosure statement is available from the Educational Studies Department.

ENGINEERING: A Combined Plan in Engineering is offered in cooperation with Columbia University and with Washington University (St. Louis). Under this plan a student combines three years of study at Carleton with two years at one of the collaborating institutions. After completion of the five-year program, the student is awarded two degrees, a BA degree from Carleton and a BS degree from the engineering school. Students majoring in chemistry, mathematics, or physics are eligible for participation in this program, provided they plan early in their college careers to complete those courses at Carleton which are necessary for admission to one of these schools at the end of three years. All Carleton proficiency and distribution requirements must be met, and the integrative exercise in the major field must be completed during the junior year. In an effort to broaden the engineering opportunities similar programs have been approved on an individual basis at other engineering schools with national reputations and with academic expectations similar to Carleton’s.

Information concerning the Combined Plan in Engineering may be obtained from Marty Baylor, Department of Physics and Astronomy. Students who expect to pursue this option should consult with her as early as possible in their college careers to make certain that their programs of study are suitable. Students intending to enter an engineering program in graduate school should also consult with her.

JOURNALISM AND PUBLISHING: After receiving a BA degree, students can obtain an MA in journalism after one year in a professional school. Many newspaper and magazine editors prefer to employ beginners with experience on college publications and a broad liberal arts education. Students who wish to become journalists are advised to take courses in economics, history, political science and English. Prospective journalists are strongly advised to write for The Carletonian and for other campus publications, to work for other newspapers and magazines during the summer, and to seek out internships on newspapers and magazines and in publishing houses, all of which offer ample opportunity for students to obtain practical experience.

LAW: Most important for law school admission is the development of skills of expression, logic, and verbal and quantitative analysis. What major the student chooses in order to acquire and improve these skills is unimportant. Law schools typically look for a variety of backgrounds and majors among their applicants.

A Combined Plan in Law is offered in cooperation with the Columbia University School of Law. Under this plan a student combines three years of study at Carleton with three years at Columbia Law School. After completion of the six year program, the student is awarded two degrees, a BA degree from Carleton and a JD degree from Columbia. Student applications from Carleton are rare, and the number of applications each year is limited. Information on the combined plan may be obtained from Richard Berman, the campus Pre-Law adviser. Application should be made early in the junior year.

LIBRARY AND INFORMATION SCIENCE: People with degrees in library and/or information science are employed in a wide range of settings, including academic, public, school and specialized libraries, archives, historical societies, and museums, as well as in business of government, and information technology. In all of these settings, information professionals organize and assist with the discovery, evaluation and use of an increasingly rich mix of analog and digital sources in a wide variety of formats. A master’s degree from a school of library and information science accredited by the American Library Association is the credential usually needed by those planning a career in librarianship or related fields.

The Bachelor of Arts degree with a broad background in the arts and science is the best preparation for graduate study in library and information science. Any undergraduate major is acceptable; however there is a particular demand for people with science and social science backgrounds. For a career in academic libraries, a second subject masters is recommended. Course work and practical experience in organizing, retrieving, manipulating, and presenting information are highly valued, as is teaching and working directly with information seekers. Facility with changing technologies is essential. Students with an interest in librarianship or related fields can gain practical experience through a wide variety of student jobs in the College library and Archives, as well as through work in the Music Resource Center, Carleton Art Museum and the Northfield Historical Society. Carleton’s 20+ librarians and archivists are always eager to talk with students about work in library and information management settings or to consider sponsoring students in internships. Contact the College Librarian for a referral to a local librarian or other information professional (x4267.)

MEDICINE: It is suggested that students discuss questions relating to preparation for medical training with Pam Middleton, Pre-Med adviser. Most students who plan to enter schools of allopathic or osteopathic medicine, will major in a science, but a major in any field is acceptable providing certain basic science courses are included. The specific requirements of the various medical schools are listed in Medical School Admissions Requirements. A copy of this book and other medical school information can be found in the Career Center Library.

OTHER HEALTH PROFESSIONS: Students interested in advanced degree programs in field such as dentistry, hospital administration, midwifery, nursing, several specialty fields in psychology, public health, or veterinary medicine may request advice and support from the Career Center, the pre-med adviser, and the Wellness Center.

MINISTRY: Theological seminaries, divinity programs, and rabbinical schools advocate a broad general background with courses in languages, philosophy, social science, history, English, sciences, and religion. Interested students should speak with the chaplains or members of the Religion Department for more information about professional education in ministry.

SOCIAL WORK: The Council on Social Work Education has recognized the following sequence of courses at Carleton as containing social welfare content, and they are recommended for those planning a career in social work: Sociology/Anthropology 220, Class, Power and Inequality in America. Also recommended as courses related to this sequence are Psychology 250, Developmental Psychology; 252, Personality; 254, Psychopathology; 354, Counseling Psychology.