Investing in the Future of Students at Hunter College Hillel rss
In today’s economy, young adults face high unemployment rates upon graduation. Students at many CUNY schools are often the first in their family to attend college and therefore face a disadvantage of resources in the job search process. A new effort at Hunter College Hillel, a beneficiary agency of UJA-Federation of New York, is helping students access quality career and graduate school guidance.
“My students don’t typically have the connections necessary to enter the professional world,” said Lisa Pollack, executive director of Hunter College Hillel. So a panel was brought together last spring, including two lay leaders from UJA-Federation’s Emerging Leaders & Philanthropists (ELP), to provide students interested in healthcare careers the opportunity to ask questions and gain perspective. “The panel was designed to contribute to the knowledge base of students,” Pollack said.
Many of the students attending the panel wanted to know more about the medical school application process and alternative careers in health care. A psychiatry resident at Mount Sinai Medical Center and member of UJA-Federation’s ELP, Dr. Brian Fuchs, was able to provide the students with some critical answers and insight into his own path to medicine.
“I had a lot of support,” said Dr. Fuchs, “but not everyone has the same opportunities. Not everyone has parents who are doctors like I do.” Fuchs recognized the need for students to hear about applying to medical school from someone who is close to the process.
Pollack said including young professionals from ELP in the effort was important. “Students can look at these residents and think, ‘In ten years I’ll look something like that.’”
Encouraged by the success of the panel, the Caring Commission at UJA-Federation will support a pilot program this fall at Hunter College Hillel to continue to provide students guidance into the professional world that will help them thrive in the job market.