Getting Their Feet Wet
Over winter break, student leaders from the Career Center led a career immersion trip of 17 first-year students, sophomores, and juniors to New York City. The students were divided into three industry tracks: law, art, and publishing. Each track visited two sites where Hamilton alumni hosted them, and the group had lunch with younger alumni who work in the city.
The students met and networked with over 22 Hamilton alumni who were eager to share their industry knowledge over the course of the day. The site visits included panel discussions, tours of the different companies, and even an afternoon tea. Students learned about the alumni’s roles and career paths and were able to ask questions during their visits.
The day began with a breakfast with Philip Ruppel ’80 who works at Phaidon Press and who spoke about his career experiences in all three industries represented.
In the morning, the law track visited one of the city’s best and biggest law firms, Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom, where more than 20 Hamilton alumni work, including Lea Kuck ’87, a member of Hamilton’s board of trustees. They went on to visit a smaller firm, Walden, Macht, & Haran, hosted by partner Jim Walden '88.
The arts track visited Kaikodo, an art gallery, hosted by Carol Conover K’72 and then an art agency, Art + Commerce, where they met Becky Lewis K’78. The students were able to see two different sides of the art world, both the creative and business sides.
The publishing track visited two publishing companies: HarperCollins and Scholastic Book Trade. They also saw different sides of the industry by having more informal conversations during lunch with alumni who work on the digital side of the industry.
Throughout the day, the student participants were amazed at how engaged the alumni were and how much they were learning. Grace Passannante '20 said that she felt “as though I have a more comprehensive view of a career in law.” Alumnus Aaron Whiteman '13 joked that no one really knows what being a lawyer is like and hoped that this trip could give the students a true idea.
Delgado Corcoran ’19 did not know much about the art field coming into the day. He said, “After my time with all the alumni, I can say that’s changed. Everyone had extremely valuable knowledge to share.”
The Career Center’s goal was to show students the importance of the alumni network and how it can be helpful to explore different industries.