On April 18th at 3:30 p.m. in Dinkins Auditorium, a handful of students gathered for Casual Friday to hear about a new program that is being introduced to the university.
This program is the Individualized Studies program in the Department of Interdisciplinary Studies in which students, once they have applied and been accepted, create their own degree. The name of the degree and the courses they take are all up to the student. However, the student is not completely alone once the degree has been created.
The student will be required to select three advisors, one from the College of Arts and Sciences, and two other faculty members that are experienced in the student’s areas of interest.
Two students, sophomore Heidi Ebeling and senior Ebony Wilkinson are two of three students that are the first to be accepted to the program and spoke about their experience with the application process and what degree they have created.
Ebeling’s degree will be Women, Children and Family: Welfare and Advocacy. Wilkinson’s degree will be Women’s Health and Empowerment through Fitness and Wellness.
Both of these students are taking classes from multiple areas of interest, such as Business, Psychology, Sociology and Fitness.
The Individualized Studies program director is Dr. Clara Paulino, and she told students that they have to be very self-driven. She assured everyone that along with the three advisors that a student will pick, she is also someone that the students should be comfortable going to because it is her goal to help them.
After Paulino spoke, Tom Injaychock from the Center for Career and Civic Engagement spoke about how Crawford can be beneficial to students, as well as some of the steps students should take to get a strong feel for what they want to do in life. He also spoke about how they can be successful in searching for a job and knowing that the field they are in is right for them.
Injaychock said that Strong Interest and Myers-Briggs Personality tests are offered for students who are wondering about what field they would be best in, and what kind of people they are better suited to work with. Injaychock said that if students know what they want to do in life, there are three steps they need to follow to absolutely make sure they have made the right decision.
Students need to research what career they want to do, so they know everything the position entails; students need to conduct an informational interview with someone in their field of interest and ask that person what they did to get to where they are and what they would suggest the student to; and finally, look for internships.
Injaychock said there are majors that require internships and they are a great way to gain experience in the field, so students know if that is really what they want to do with their lives.
He stressed a website called LinkedIn, which is a professional social media site for people to put up their professional pictures, resumes and anything else of importance to put themselves out there to network and meet companies that are looking for specific skills.
Injaychock also stressed that the Center for Career and Civic Engagement has helpful tools on their part of the Winthrop website, from internship opportunities to descriptions of the many different majors Winthrop offers.
For more information on the individualized studies program, email Dr. Paulino at firstname.lastname@example.org.