March 11, 2014 11:00 AM
“We want to help students figure out their individual goals,” says Rebecca Otten, program coordinator for social innovation at the Tulane Center for Engaged Learning and Teaching (CELT). “Career paths in social impact tend to wind — they’re not as straightforward as some of the more established sectors where students are looking for jobs.”
The nonprofit organization Echoing Green, which supports social entrepreneurs, developed “Work on Purpose: 10 Principles for Creating a Meaningful Career.”
Each week, students meet for lunch with group leaders from across campus to strategize practical steps towards a career in social innovation.
The session, Head+Heart=Hustle, on Feb. 27 focused on identifying students’ passions and skills, and brainstorming steps towards combining the two into possible career paths.
Lisa Maria Rhodes, an academic adviser at Tulane, led students through a series of questions to complete a Venn diagram that combined students’ desires for society (heart) and the skills and talents they have to offer (head).
In pairs, the students shared what they had written and discussed ways to combine their passions and talents. Then they shared with the group small steps they had come up with during the session to move toward their goals.
“People were able to leave with an actionable item toward their hustle,” says Rhodes. “And the icing on the cake is when their partner had helped them find it.”
Future workshops will focus on developing personal purpose statements, confronting fears that hold young professionals back and how to deal productively with early failures. The free workshops are on Thursdays from 12:30 until 1:45 p.m. in the Richardson Building on the uptown campus. Students must register in advance on the Work on Purpose website.
Elisabeth Morgan is a freelance writer living in New Orleans. She graduated from Tulane University in 2011 with a BA in French and English.
Tulane University, New Orleans, LA 70118 504-865-5000 firstname.lastname@example.org