I could almost see transition of student to alumni through the shifting attire of those present as President Voskuil cut the ribbon officially declaring the Hope College Boerigter center open. From the green T-shirts of student staff, to the collared shirts of dedicated alum, to the suits and formal wear of founding members, the shifting fashion displayed the full range of people who had to make this project possible.
I first talked with Dale Austin, an over thirty year veteran of Hope’s Career Center to learn how the new Boerigter Center came about. “I was on the Boerigter task force that was chaired by Dave VanWylen,” he started. “A number of us visited a number of different campuses nationally to look at different models.
One of the things that we saw was no one is effectively integrating academic advising, career development and alumni engagement like we’re envisioning. So that’s a real distinction and we feel that could be a real strength going forward” Some readers may recognize that alumni engagement element Austin described, as approximately a week ago a campus-wide email was sent out to relay the opportunity to shadow alum. Austin described the early process of this program. “We had done that [shadowing alum] before through a program that one of our staff, Megan, leads called. We started it maybe six years ago. We rebranded it three years ago as Discover Work. It’s taken off. Last year we had forty students shadow.” Austin was excited that these opportunities we’re able to access this new space in the Boltman student center stating: “I think it’s great.
One of the things this task force discovered looking at other campuses is the value of bringing it to the center of campus. The Career Development Center was formerly on the north side of campus in the corner of Anderson Werkman, whichthrough here, so they have no choice but to trip on us. [To be] as clearly available as possible is one of our objectives here.” His sentiments were echoed by Boerigter workers like Emma Spears who stated that being in the center of campus meant “I’ll have more people come by. It’s more a part of the Hope community [now]” For those interested in learning more about the new Boerigter Center, visit https://hope.edu/offices/ boerigter-center/, or just drop by the middle of campus. It’s on your way to success. was not as convenient. As you can see students walk right