Is your career on the right track?

Gustavo Siguenza never expected to be where he is today.

Gustavo Siguenza, Bachelor of Science, Project Management, 2019

A carpenter from Dorchester, Siguenza always wanted to go to college but never had the chance. “I didn’t finish high school,” he explains “which prevented me from going to college.” When the opportunity did present itself, however, Siguenza jumped at it.

At first, he tried attending a community college but had a bad experience. As an adult learner, Siguenza worried about fitting in and getting used to being back in a classroom. “I enrolled in community college to ease my fears,” he says.” But, actually, it did the opposite.” In the community college, he felt isolated and alone as he tried to navigate the college experience. “I almost gave up on pursuing a degree,” he says. Continue reading

stand out in a crowd with these skills

Last Friday, the Bureau of Labor Statistics released its latest unemployment numbers. And the news is good. Again.

In October, the unemployment rate held steady at 3.7 percent, the lowest it’s been in nearly 50 years, as 250,000 new jobs were added. Wages were up as well by 3.1 percent, the largest year-over-year gain for hourly wages in over a decade according to the Wall Street Journal. With so many job openings, as well as job-seekers, now is the time to think about your skills and how to stand out in a crowd. Continue reading

Success: Do you have what it takes?

Some advice from one generation of leaders to the next

by Phil Hammond

Photo by rawpixel on Unsplash

You get up in the morning. Get in your car, call Uber, hop on the T or settle yourself in a home office. How do you do it? How do you motivate yourself to be successful in your chosen field? How do construction managers, facility directors and project managers operate effectively, successfully and cooperatively within project teams?

It is estimated that by 2020, 46 percent of the workforce in the US will be between the ages of 24 and 39. For baby boomers, like me, that means preparing to hand over leadership in the workplace to members of the millennial generation. For some, including some millennials, this raises an important question: are millennials ready to lead?  Josh Bersin, in Forbes Magazine, argues they are not.  Pointing to a recent study which showed 30 percent of millennials themselves felt they were not prepared for the responsibilities of leadership due to a lack of confidence managing employees and resolving conflicts, Bersin notes, “this generation isn’t developed for leadership now” (Bersin, 2013 ). Continue reading

When a degree isn’t enough

career services for adult learners

Most working adults cite “career advancement” as their primary reason for returning to school. Among online students, more than three quarters pursue programs for “career-focused” reasons (Magda, 2018).

But, sometimes having advanced skills and knowledge, and even a degree, isn’t enough to get you where you want to be. Working adults need help identifying new opportunities, building resumes, and preparing for interviews in a new field or industry.  In the following post, Janel Juba of Wentworth’s Center for Cooperative Education and Career Development shares some insights on what working adults can expect from career services:

At the Center for Cooperative Education and Career Development, we deliver the necessary resources to be effective in the workplace, provide essential job search strategies and teach students how to find jobs that align with their classroom knowledge, skills and interests. Our mission is to EQUIP students with the necessary tools to EVOLVE their skills and ultimately EXCEL in their industry. Continue reading

Orientation 101

How one college dean helps adult students get their bearings going back to school

by Deborah Wright

hands holding a compass and an open map
Photo by rawpixel on Unsplash

My career in higher education has focused primarily on non-traditional adult students. Unlike most people, when I close my eyes and think of a college student, I see the single mother, the veteran, and the full-time employee (The Chronicle of Higher Education, 2018). And while the definition of who an adult student is – financially independent, attending school part-time, employed full-time or someone who just delayed postsecondary education (Nadworny, 2018) – there are a few things that I have observed that all adult students have in common. Continue reading

bird by bird: how to thrive, not merely survive, in the new academic year

black and white birds on a wire
Photo by Ridham Nagralawala on Unsplash
by Kelly Jenkins Lin

Author and speaker, Anne Lamott, tells the story of her ten-year-old brother who was trying to write a report on birds. Despite having nearly 3 months to work on it, he had put it off until the night before it was due. Close to tears, he sat at the family’s kitchen table surrounded by books and pencils and clean paper, overwhelmed by the enormity of the task. Then Lamott’s father sat down beside her brother, put his arm around his shoulders and said, “Bird by bird, buddy. Just take it bird by bird” (Lamott, 1994).

For many adults, returning to school can feel like trying to write a report the night before it is due. On the threshold of a new academic year, surrounded by stacks of books and pencils and clean paper they feel overwhelmed by the enormity of what lies ahead and wonder how they will ever make it through. Below are five steps that will not only help students to survive, but to thrive, in the new academic year. Continue reading

Credit Where Credit is Due

Put Prior Learning Assessment to work for you

by Kelly Jenkins Lin

Rich Rago
Rich Rago, BSPM 13; MSFM 15

 This is the second in a two-part post about PLA. To read part I, click here: Part I

When Richard Rago decided to pursue a college degree, he had 10 years of work experience but no formal classroom education. He worried that might put him at a disadvantage until one of his professors pointed out that, thanks to his many years in the field, Rago knew more than most of his classmates. The professor then suggested Rago try to get credit for his on-the-job learning. He did and with the credit he earned Rago was able to opt out of 3 classes, or the equivalent of one semester. “It was definitely worth it,” he says. Continue reading

You Deserve Some Credit

Rich Rago
Rich Rago, BSPM 13; MSFM 15

Earn credit for what you know, no matter where you learned it.

by Kelly Jenkins Lin

Richard Rago had been working in construction and project management for 10 years before he decided to return to school.

“I was passed over for a promotion,” he explains, “not because I didn’t have experience but because I didn’t have a degree. That was the push I needed.” At first, his goal was to earn an associates degree from Wentworth but, in 2009, with encouragement from faculty in the College of Professional and Continuing Education, he enrolled in the Bachelor of Science in Project Management.

That was when Rago discovered how valuable his job experience was.  Continue reading

How Far Will You Go?

Man sitting at a desk in a classroom
Joe Masello, BSPM 2015

Joe Masello had a dream.

“My goal was to earn an associates degree,” he says, “but then I found out about the Project Management program at Wentworth and immediately transferred.” A graduate of Wentworth’s Master Electrician program, Joe knew he could count on a degree from Wentworth to help him achieve his dreams.

But he didn’t realize just how far it would take him. Continue reading