The guidance given to students by their department’s faculty is crucial in helping students in determining which classes (especially major electives and free electives) would best position students for career success. Also, when applying to graduate school or a job, students will often be required to submit 3 to 5 letters of recommendation. In these instances, it is the department faculty from a student’s major department that generally hold the most weight when being considered for admission or hire. Finally, faculty from a student’s major department have valuable insight into the fields they teach in, knowing what jobs, internships and volunteer experiences best prepare a student to be ready for success (and ready to compete for jobs after graduation). For all these reasons, EVERY student should be speaking regularly with department/major faculty beginning freshman year.
All too often, students leave college without having established a good relationship with faculty tied to the student’s major. This often leads to students completing a degree and/or minors that are poorly suited to a student’s career goals. On the flip side, students who are connected with department professors and are asking questions are those who often have a significantly easier time navigating their undergraduate years as well as graduate school AND their ultimate career.
Do you have 3 professors in your department that could provide you with a glowing recommendation today, a recommendation that clearly identifies your strengths and accomplishments? If not, you have some work to do.