OPINION: Life Outside the DePauw Bubble

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I did it. I popped the bubble. The DePauw “bubble” that is. As a native Chicagoan, this past summer I left the DePauw bubble and brought everything I’ve learned here in Greencastle with me to the real world to an internship in Indianapolis.

I was working for the Language Training Center, a full service language provider and one of Indy’s fastest growing small companies in the years 2012 and 2013. At LTC, I worked with the Language Training department to locate foreign language and ESL teachers across the country and helped facilitate private language lessons with a communicate and inquiry based approach.

When looking for language teachers at LTC, my search started with the Internet. I was initially terrified when I learned that reaching out to prospective teachers often meant cold calling and scouring resume databases. Despite my trepidation about picking up the phone and calling strangers, I was able to engage skills I had gained in countless seminar library sessions and used my research skills in a completely new light: to research people.

Once I made my initial contacts and started collecting resumes for individual positions, I began scheduling interviews and collecting information about teaching experience from potential teachers. I was surprised to learn that the interview skills I have gained here at DePauw through the Hubbard Center and other professional opportunities would apply to my experiences as an interviewer as well.

Being interested and engaged, having prior knowledge of the applicant, coming prepared with questions and being prompt are all skills that are not only expected here at DePauw and while interviews but also throughout the work world.

The biggest gift that DePauw gave me that I took with me to Indianapolis was the ability to network. I quickly realized that the most sure-fire way to garner sincere interest in subcontracting with LTC was to relate to the applicant’s past experience and connect with the applicants on a human level.

We don’t always realize it as students, but here at DePauw we are required to network with the new students on our floors, with the speakers that come to campus, with alumni at career fairs and with professors when we’re in dire need of a Special Permissions Access Code for that must-have-class.

This summer in Indianapolis I was successful at LTC because I was able to bring “the bubble” with me. It helped that I really had the best of both worlds — the excitement of living in the real world while still being able to safely return to the bubble at the end of the summer.

It is your time to pop the bubble. Show the world how DePauw has raised you.

- Rauschenberger is a senior French and political science major from Elgin, Illinois.