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Engagement Wanted: Building Connections Through the Carleton Network

March 11, 2011
By Evan Rowe ’09

It’s been written about in the Financial Times and the Chronicle of Higher Education. It has connected hundreds of students, parents, and alumni. It has even been copied by St. Olaf.

And now it’s back—and bigger than ever.

Now in its third year, Engagement Wanted connects alumni and parents with students in a low-maintenance way. Each week, five short student profiles are emailed to alumni and parent volunteers who are invited to offer advice, suggestions, job or housing leads, or other tips to the students. Volunteers also can search for student profiles on a secure Carleton Web site.

So what’s new this year? For the first time, Engagement Wanted is open to Carleton juniors. Erin Gudul ’12 says that “students are thrilled” about the expansion. Whereas seniors often have to focus on getting a post-Carleton job, juniors have a bit more freedom, Gudul notes, to “pursue interests with something they are passionate about, but may be unrelated to their specific academic scope or intended career path.” These are exactly the kinds of relationships that Engagement Wanted is designed to foster in a no-cost, minimal-commitment way.

Students who have participated in the program have a variety of success stories, from job and internship offers to informational interviews or simple email conversations that helped provide some essential perspective.

Alumni learn a lot, too. One volunteer writes: “Engagement Wanted inspires me to keep expecting better of myself. I learn to reframe my dreams by reading the ambitions of the next batch of Carleton graduates.”

Engagement Wanted depends on strong volunteer participation from alumni and parents. No matter what career, history, or contact list you have, your perspective could be exactly what one student needs. If you have five minutes a week to read short, fun profiles of students, please sign up today. You might make a big impact in a student’s life.

We can’t do it without you!  

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