Found Object: 2008 Alumni Career and Jobs Panel

Location: English Department Main Office.
Object: Flyer for the 2008 Alumni Career and Jobs Panel.
Observations: 1) For several years after its start in 2005, we used to alternate between a larger event (Alumni Connections) with a more local one (the Alumni Career and Jobs Panel). As of 2014, the annual event holds the name “Alumni Connections,” as that title best represents our goal in connecting our current students to our alumni.  2) In 2008, the event was still being planned primarily by the the Director of Graduate Studies and our Graduate Program (hence Greg Eiselein’s name as the contact). By the 2008-2009 academic year, the new Director of Undergraduate Studies took the lead in coordination with our Director of Graduate Studies, and it became a department-led event.  3) The reference to “real, live alumni” raises some interesting possible alternatives even as it sells the event as proof that there’s (a professional) life after earning the English degree.
Location: English Department Main Office.
Object: Flyer for this year’s Alumni Connections panel.
Observations: 1) Color! Color copies are now standard for most event publicity, thanks to the availability of color printers and color xerox machines. 2) We’ve gotten better about adding the year of the event and the degrees and graduation years of our alumni to our publicity. (The date for the 2008 flyer emerged by process of deduction and other nearby flyers.) 3) Our annual event now occurs in the fall semester in order to prompt conversations earlier in the year. 4) Our undergraduate and graduate alumni continue to pursue a range of profession career paths, as this year’s panel demonstrates.
Location: Leadership Studies Building.
Object: Photo of our 2019 Alumni Connections panelists. Left to right: Mo Li (MA ’10), Sarah Caldwell Hancock (BA ’94, MA ’96), Crystal Lenz (BA ’06, MA ’09), and Emily Moore (BA ’18) .
Observations: 1) We’re never sure how the conversation will unfold each year, but our alumni always provide insightful reflections and useful perspectives for our English students and our faculty in attendance. 2) This year’s panel focused, among other topics, on transfer of skills from the English classroom to the workplace, the advantages of leaving Kansas to gain perspective and experience, and how, in the words of Mo Li, a degree in English provides the ability to “take risks” and to “gather information from books, from people, and from situations.” 3) If you’d like to  serve as a panelist for a future Alumni Connections event, email us at!

Karin Westman, Department Head




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