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From the College of Natural Sciences
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Life Is Non-linear (Thankfully)‏

Life Is Non-linear (Thankfully)‏

Let the college help you find your own path. 

Dear students,

This is a juxtaposed time of year. The December graduation ceremony just a around the corner (December 8) for 600+ of our seniors, and December 1 was the application deadline for UT, with families and future Longhorns calling with questions about majors and careers. It's natural to believe that certain majors track directly in to certain jobs — biology majors go on to be clinicians, chemists work for Dow or Corning, computer science majors do software, and physics majors must do something too. But life is more interesting and complicated.

Our alumni look back at their time and college and that the paths they ultimately followed were far more varied and far more interesting than they anticipated. A writing course taught them they liked journalism. A student organization taught them they like leadership and management roles. A summer internship taught them they liked healthcare data management. The Career Design Center has assembled the stories of several of our alumni here at this site. Hear from a fish farmer, a science writer, a hospital social worker, and the dean of a college. All will tell you that if we are open to trying new things, the most interesting opportunities will be the unanticipated surprises.

To that end, I want to remind you of the College of Natural Sciences Externship Program (January 7th, 8th, & 9th, 2014). This program is an opportunity for students to visit an employer in Texas for one day during winter break in January 2014. You will have an opportunity to shadow an executive, get real world experience and exposure to what professionals in their field do on a daily basis, and gain insight into the professional work environment. Currently there are over 30 companies in Texas who will be participating in this event (availability varies by major)! You will be required to provide your own transportation to the externship site. Registration is at the events page of the Career Design Center and will be completed via ScienceWorks on a first-come, first-served basis. Here is an opportunity, in an era when you hear about the difficulty in gaining real exposure to careers, job shadowing, and mentorship, to have an up-close exposure to executives and leaders in their field.

The good news is that life is not a linear path — many paths lead us to surprising and positive outcomes.

Best wishes in the coming week.
--Dr. Kopp

PS: Each week we try to let you know of events, scholarship opportunities, etc. Check out the full week's line-up at this link.

PPS: The Dean's Office is looking to hire two students to assist Ka'rin Thornburg with CNS Recruitment efforts for spring 2014. The positions are 12–20 hours per week and will assist with coordinating CNS ambassador activities, plan and implement admitted student recruitment events, facilitate prospective student meetings, and respond to phone and email inquiries. Ideal candidates can dedicate multi-hour time blocks. If interested, please email available work hours and resume to CNSAdmissions@austin.utexas.edu.

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