Susan L. Wagner ’82 Career Advising Program

Embark Retreat

The Susan L. Wagner ’82 Career Advising Program

What do you want to be when you graduate? Rest assured that most Wellesley students are unsure about their career paths and even those that feel certain often do — and should! — change their course. When beginning your career journey, it can be tempting to imagine that it will be one straight line. However, as countless alums will tell you, that’s not the way it works — and that’s a good thing! As the Bureau of Labor Statistics reports, the average worker will have 12-15 jobs in 5-7 different career fields in her lifetime. 

 

 

Career Exploration

Regardless of what year you are at Wellesley, we are here to help you explore potential career paths. Every student is matched with an Advisor for Career Exploration (ACE), who is available for conversations about your values, strengths, and interests. Your ACE will provide the mentorship, tools, connections, and space for self-assessment and reflection to identify the paths you want to pursue. Schedule an appointment in Handshake to meet with your ACE as follows:

  • First Years: Hayley Meredith McIlvaine, ACE for the Class of 2027
  • Sophomores: Ariane Baker, ACE for the Class of 2026
  • Juniors Ariane Baker, ACE for the Class of 2025
  • Seniors: Marisa Crowley, ACE for the Class of 2024

On our Career Exploration page, we have broken down some of opportunities to get you started in thinking about your career journey!

Career Advising for Specific Industries and Fields

You may already have some inclination about what industry or field you might like to work within. You also may still be quite uncertain — and that is both normal and completely okay! You don’t need to know exactly what you want to do to meet with a specialized Career Advisor — simply having curiosity about a field or industry is a great place to begin.

To meet with an industry/field specific Career Advisor, make an appointment in Handshake by selecting “Career, Internship, and Graduate School by Industry/Field.“ If you aren’t sure which Advisor covers your field of interest, email careereducation@wellesley.edu and we’ll point you in the right direction! The categories are broadly encompassing, so no matter what your career interests are, there is an Advisor who can work with you to explore the fields you are considering. 

Recruiting Timelines for Specific Industries and Fields

Many industries have different recruiting schedules—learn about timelines and career paths, and explore your interests with the help of our industry/field specific Career Advisors, and through the drop-downs below!

Arts, Communications, & Media Careers
webpage (#acm)

Students can organize their search and prep their documents and portfolios (as needed) in the fall to prepare for spring hiring timelines.

  • UI/UX and Product Design: Recruiting starts in January and ramps up by February, recruiting slows down by summer 
  • Publishing and Journalism: Recruiting for full-time publishing and journalism roles is between late December and May. Post-graduation internships or fellowships are common in these industries and can lead to a full-time position. 
  • Arts and Media in general: January - mid-April primarily. 

Education, Nonprofit, & Social Impact Hiring Timelines
webpage (#ensi)

  • Education: Those hoping to work in education as teachers or administrators will understand that most schools or educational organizations take the academic calendar into account.  Many schools will post opportunities for the fall in March or April.  That said, many schools will learn in August that they have openings, so hiring goes on even in late August and September.
  • Nonprofit: Many nonprofit organizations will hire new graduates in the springtime because they need time to see what their needs and budget will be at that time.  In addition, they will start a hiring process when they have an opening which could occur anytime–often from early to late spring.
  • Social Impact: Because this field includes a variety of roles and organization, there is not a specific timeline.  Most organizations will likely have openings when someone leaves or a department is expanding.  They will start a hiring process close to the time when they would like to fill a role.

Business, Consulting, Finance, & Marketing Timelines
webpage (#bcfm)

  • Finance: The majority of financial services companies hire for full-time roles through their internship programs. Offers are typically extended in late summer. For other full-time hires, recruiting takes place from June through October. To be competitive at firms that recruit interns, applicants should apply directly on the firm’s website by the end of December of the previous year. Recruiting for financial services (in non-banking roles) occurs between September and January. 
  • Consulting: Most full-time roles are filled through the organization's summer internship programs with offers typically made in late summer. For other full-time hires, the recruiting cycle typically occurs in September through December/early January. Applicants should closely monitor company websites throughout the month of August.
  • Marketing: Peak recruiting occurs between January and May with the exception of rotational programs. Advertising-specific marketing roles are recruited for during the months of February through May. Applicants should start reviewing company websites by early January.

Government, International Affairs, Law, & Public Policy Timelines
webpage (#gialp)

Law: For seniors not pursuing law school but seeking legal jobs, most entry-level paralegal and legal assistant positions hire in mid/late spring. There are a few prestigious legal  opportunities with fall deadlines, including the Mintz Project Analyst Program and the Kobre & Kim Analyst program. Keep an eye on #GIALP newsletters for announcements about these earlier recruiting opportunities!

Government: Most entry-level jobs in government are posted in the spring, and are looking for people to begin work immediately (so not looking to hire in January and then wait 6 months for the candidate to graduate). This is largely applicable to federal, state, and local hiring, but we encourage you to meet with Career Education to talk about your specific goals and drill down into possible differences between government agencies. For example, the Department of Justice  often posts entry-level paralegal roles staggered throughout the spring, so those aren't all technically for "immediate hire", and a great strategy is to set up a Saved Search for these opportunities on USAJobs in the fall. The most notable exception to the spring hiring rule is in the intelligence community, where the screening and background check process can take many months, so if those roles interest you, you would want to look into intelligence opportunities as early as possible (at least a year in advance) to learn the timelines for the specific intelligence agencies you are pursuing.

Think Tanks: Some of the larger think tanks may post entry-level opportunities in the early spring semester (with deadlines as early as January), but this can vary from year to year and from employer to employer. Think tanks more often post entry-level opportunities in mid-late spring.

Fellowships: Overlying all of this is fellowships, of course! There are many, many fellowships geared toward people pursuing careers in government and policy, so we encourage you to have fellowships on your radar this summer and fall, and then move on to applying for spring opportunities as needed after considering/applying for fellowships in the fall.

Health Professions Advising
webpage (#healthprofessions)

Science, Technology, Engineering, & Public Health Careers
webpage (#setph)

  • Science: Undergraduate hiring typically happens between January and May for research roles in non-profits, medical and research organizations.
  • Technology: Entry level roles tend to be posted in the late summer through early September, and the recruiting cycle wraps up by the end of December. Mid sized and small tech firms usually begin recruiting in Jan/Feb, while tech start-ups often begin the process in Feb/March.  Non-tech roles at tech companies tend to be posted a bit later than the more technical roles at that company.
  • Public health research & clinical positions: usually hiring in Feb-April for summer starts.

Career Advisors

Peer Career Mentors

Entertainment

Hebert
Hebert Labbate

Today's entertainment industry includes everything from the large scale productions of the Hollywood studio system, to the independent work being done within smaller markets, to the new media offerings adapting at the fringe of established distribution channels. A lot of attention and publicity is given to the “above the line” careers such as directing, producing, writing, and acting, but just as many career opportunities are available within support industries like post-production, entertainment law, talent representation, public relations and marketing, and social media.

“I think art’s first goal is to remind us that we are human...”

How to Sign up for Industry Newsletters

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