What’s My Story? Developing a Personal & Professional Narrative

What's My Story? Developing a Personal and Professional Narrative

This course will give you space to know your own life/career story better and tell it in a way that is authentic and effective. We’ll begin to answer the following questions–who am I, what’s important to me, and how do I communicate this in a way that moves me forward in my life/career?–using discussion, assessment, writing, and more.

Program Details

Wherever you live, there are in-person and online opportunities to explore your career/life story with fellow Hoyas. This seminar is intended for those who graduated between 2013 and 2016.

DC participants: Three sessions in-person, and 2 asynchronous sessions online
Remote participants: Two synchronous online sessions, 3 asynchronous online modules to complete at your own pace.
September 12 – October 11

Click the table below for dates/times for both the in-person and remote participation tracks.

Why Take This Course?

“By the time they graduate from college, most students still have not achieved the kind of self-authorship that would allow them to think independently, make choices, and pursue their dreams.” – Marcia B. Baxter Magolda

This course will give you space to know your own life/career story better and tell it in a way that is authentic and effective.

We’ll begin to answer the following questions–who am I, what’s important to me, where do I want to go next, and how do I communicate this in a way that moves me forward in my career and life?–using discussion, writing, and more.

This course will be tailored to students’ individual life experiences and aspirations.  After taking this course, students will be able to:

    • Use resources and strategies from the course to reflect intentionally on their life/career narratives and begin to answer big questions: “who am I, what’s important to me, and how do I communicate this in a way that moves me forward in my life/career?”.
    • Connect their narratives to relevant opportunity contexts (e.g., job interview, graduate admissions essay, LinkedIn profile) to facilitate the achievement of educational, professional, and personal goals.

Sample activities include:

  • Reflected Best Self assessment – a feedback-seeking tool to help students integrate narratives from family, friends and colleagues to better understand their unique strengths and talents
  • How do you define a good career/life? – Through a group activity, students explore definitions of a good career/life and identify priorities and tensions within their definitions
  • Something written – students will identify a form of written storytelling to tackle (e.g., useful LinkedIn profile, a revamped resume, a personal statement for a graduate school application, a career prototyping exercise) and receive feedback and support as they work on their project
  • Panel discussion with alumni 6-10 years out of Georgetown
  • Readings from Stanford Design School and Harvard Business Review
  • Intentional discussion with other young alums who are wrestling with similar questions

Beth Harlan has devoted the past fifteen years to helping others better understand, contextualize, reframe, and articulate their own stories.  As an Associate Director in Georgetown’s Career Center, she works closely with students and alums to address big-picture and tactical questions: “who am I, where do I want to be, and how do I get there?!”

A regular speaker to twentysomethings, Beth is quick to encourage and inspire.   She first taught this course for second-semester seniors in Spring 2017, and the young alumni who helped with a session immediately asked her to develop a new version of the course for them.  

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