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Added Kelly Montoya, a senior from Phoenix: “You start to get a sense of where you might thrive, and where you might fit in.”
That’s one of the goals, said Cahoon: to give students an “unvarnished” picture of these kinds of jobs, as well as a chance to do some networking with people on the front lines.
That’s also why these kinds of college programs are becoming so popular, said Trudy Steinfeld, executive director of New York University’s Wasserman Center for Career Development, which launched its own “business boot camp” 10 years ago. “It’s one thing to say ‘I want to be a marketing person.’ It’s another thing to say ‘what do they really do?’ ” she said. These programs, she noted, are “not going to teach them to be a financial analyst in an hour and a half.” But they can show them the possibilities.
David Williams, a 21-year-old junior from Orono, said he found the sessions a welcome relief. He spent much of his sophomore year, he admitted, “just really worrying” about his future. “That’s part of the reason I took this program,” he said. “It’s very reassuring to see that people from a liberal-arts background … can get into these kinds of industries.”
Maura Lerner • 612-673-7384