Department Website: http://careeradvancement.uchicago.edu
The College general education curriculum provides excellent preparation in the critical thinking skills needed for graduate-level study in business administration. Along with the course work required to complete their major, it is advisable for interested students to pursue courses that hone their quantitative, verbal, and written skills. In addition, after their first year, students may enroll in up to six graduate-level courses at the University of Chicago Booth School of Business, with four of those courses counting toward the degree requirement. While many sections allow undergraduate enrollment, Chicago Booth also offers several courses with “undergraduate only” sections, including Financial Accounting, Marketing Strategy, Corporation Finance, or Building the New Venture.
Additional support for students considering graduate study in business is provided through the Dougan Scholars Certificate Program, Trott Business Program, Financial Markets Program, and Business Career Services.
The Dougan Scholars Certificate Program is a selective program managed by Chicago Booth, while the Trott Business Program and Financial Market Program are selective programs managed by the College through Career Advancement. Applications are accepted from all students, regardless of their major, during the first and second year for the Dougan Scholars Certificate Program, and during the first year for the Trott Business Program and Financial Markets Program. While the specific focus and requirements of the selective programs vary, each includes course work requirements at Chicago Booth, opportunities to build additional business understanding through special events with industry and academic professionals, and mentoring opportunities with upper-level College students and MBA students.
Business Career Services is an open enrollment option available to all students in the College offering industry-experienced advising and a menu of optional workshops and experiential opportunities.
Most graduate business schools require applicants to take the Graduate Management Admissions Test (GMAT). A GMAT score is currently valid for five years. Students planning to apply to graduate studies in business administration within five years of graduation should take the GMAT in their final year in the College; students can learn more and register at http://www.mba.com/us. Graduate business schools typically expect matriculating students to have acquired, on average, five years of work experience.
To strengthen the University of Chicago's reputation as a "teacher of teachers," the College and Career Advancement launched UChicago Careers in Education Professions in the fall of 2012. UChicago Careers in Education Professions provides specialized preparation for students in pursuing careers in teaching as well as educational administration, research, and policy.
UChicago Careers in Education Professions is a selective program that provides a variety of resources for students, including advising, workshops, guest speakers, teacher-training programs, partnerships with public and private local schools, internship opportunities, and treks to various education institutions.
Advising: Students have access to one-on-one advising with the program director of UChicago Careers in Education Professions, an expert with extensive experience in education. The program director provides students with personalized assistance in career planning, finding job and internship opportunities that match their interests, and preparing application materials.
Workshops and Events: Workshops are held three times per academic term and cover an array of topics and issues in the field of education. Events have included a talk with U.S. Secretary of Education Arne Duncan and the first Urban Education Summit.
Metcalf Internship Opportunities and Career Treks: Education Professions is committed to offering students valuable internship opportunities at a wide range of education-focused organizations. In addition, the program offers career treks to Chicago area schools, non-profits, and leading policy and research institutes. During these treks, students have the opportunity to experience firsthand myriad work environments and career roles in these organizations.
Partnership with the Urban Education Institute: Through a close partnership with the Urban Education Institute (UEI) and numerous academic departments, the College offers over 30 education-related courses. These include: ECON 26700 Economics of Education, SOCI 20105 Bidwell's Educational Organization and Social Inequality, and PBPL 25405 Child Poverty and Chicago Schools.
Gap Year Support: Increasingly, College students wait to apply for graduate programs until after they graduate, giving them time to make sure they are making the right decision and are able to assemble a competitive application. Education Professions supports students who choose to take time between college and their graduate programs in several ways. We continue to work with alumni who may need assistance with their applications or decision-making process. We also help students and alumni find appropriate gap year experiences in the field of education.
Students with an interest in starting a business, working at a start-up, or exploring entrepreneurial finance will find a wide range of resources available to them through UChicago Careers in Entrepreneurship. The goal of this pre-professional program is not to have every student start a business, but rather for every student to have the opportunity to be exposed to an entrepreneurial way of thinking through experiential learning opportunities that complement the general education curriculum.
In addition to organizing College-specific workshops and opportunities, this Career Advancement program also works closely with the Polsky Center for Entrepreneurship and Innovation. College students are able to take advantage of world-class opportunities and resources available through the Polsky Center, including attending industry conferences, attending workshops organized by the MBA student–run Entrepreneurship and Venture Capital Club, and attending office hours with Entrepreneurs-in-Residence. Students are also able to take courses at Chicago Booth, notably an undergraduate-only section of Building the New Venture.
Programming highlights for UChicago Careers in Entrepreneurship include:
- The College New Venture Challenge is an undergraduate-only business plan competition that enables students to go through the progression of discovering an idea, building a team, creating a proof of concept, and pitching to investors. Throughout the competition, students are engaged with mentors drawn from alumni and local entrepreneurs.
- Many student teams also enter competitions that are not sponsored by the University. Examples include competitions sponsored by Clinton Global Initiative, Clean Energy Trust, Net Impact, Microsoft, Google, and Wal-Mart, as well as competitions sponsored by other universities like Stanford and MIT.
- Social entrepreneurship is a popular topic on campus with many student organizations, including GlobeMed, Campus Catalyst, and Envision Do, supporting students who want to solve social and environmental issues through new innovations.
- Start-up careers and internships are another area of student interest. Many local companies participate in the Metcalf Internship program, and local start-up companies are encouraged to hire UChicago students through subsidies and other promotions. Of note, UChicago Careers in Entrepreneurship has strong partnerships with the University's Polsky Exchange in Hyde Park, the 1871 incubator at the Merchandise Mart, and the health care incubator Matter.
- In addition to bringing in alumni and local entrepreneurs as speakers, the program also engages with local angel investors and venture capital firms. Students have worked in associate roles while in school with such local groups as Chicago Ventures, OCA Ventures, and Hyde Park Angels.
- Career treks are an outstanding way for students to meet with companies in various industries as well as learn about different regions of the country or the world. In addition to treks to Silicon Valley, UChicago Careers in Entrepreneurship looks to engage with other regional hubs of entrepreneurial opportunity, including New York City, Boston, Austin, and Chicago.
UChicago Careers in Health Professions (UCIHP) provides students with the resources and support to develop the knowledge, skills, competencies, and experiences required for advanced study in the health professions. The College’s broad and intellectually expansive liberal arts education, coupled with pre-health courses and support from UChicago Careers in Health Professions, is exceptional preparation for a career in health and medicine. Students develop the competencies required by graduate schools of the health professions, including: in-depth experience with the process of scientific inquiry; a facility in drawing linkages among scientific disciplines; strong critical thinking and communication skills; the ability to use mathematics to explain the natural world; mastery of basic principles of physics and chemistry; an understanding of the diversity of subject matter and methods of investigation in the biological sciences; and a sophisticated appreciation of the social context of health and medicine.
Upon meeting the College's general education requirements, students are encouraged to major in any discipline in which they have a strong interest, while fulfilling the following common entry requirements for advanced study in the field:
3 quarters of general chemistry with labs
3 quarters of organic chemistry with labs
3 quarters of biology with labs
3 quarters of physics with labs
1 quarter of biochemistry
3 quarters of a general education humanities sequence (recommended)
3 quarters of calculus (recommended)
1 quarter of statistics (recommended)
The Biological Sciences Collegiate Division (BSCD) offers several course sequences that prepare students for advanced study in the health professions. Students should consult the Biological Sciences page in this catalog and work closely with their College advisers to determine which sequence is most appropriate.
Students should be aware that the MCAT has expanded to include a section on Behavioral and Psychological Sciences; for more information, visit students-residents.aamc.org/applying-medical-school/article/whats-mcat-exam. Students are encouraged to consider SOSC 18100 Topics in Behavioral and Social Sciences Relevant to Medicine or other course work within the Social Sciences Collegiate Division to assist in preparing for this section.
Students who are unable to complete three quarters of a general education humanities sequence in their first year should plan to take a writing-intensive English course when their schedule allows. They should understand however, that this English course cannot be applied to the general education humanities requirement.
It is recommended that students work closely with their College advisers to choose courses appropriate to their level of preparation and interest. Although the College offers course sequences that fulfill all of the above requirements, some schools of the health professions have additional requirements. To ensure all requirements are met, students are also encouraged to check directly with the schools to which they intend to apply.
UChicago Careers in Health Professions supports students and alumni as they explore the health professions, among them allopathic (MD) and osteopathic (DO) medicine, nursing (PhD), dental (DDS) and podiatric (DPM) medicine, veterinary medicine (DVM), pharmacy (PharmD), and health services research (PhD). In addition to curricular assistance, UChicago Careers in Health Professions offers a wide range of cocurricular support that empowers students to achieve a high level of academic, professional, and personal success.
Students interested in the health professions should consult first with their College adviser and then with UChicago Careers in Health Professions. Appointments may be made with UCIHP via AdviseStream.
Journalism, Arts, and Media
Preparation for careers in journalism, arts, and media is as varied as the disciplines within these fields. Students majoring in Music, Cinema and Media Studies, Theater and Performance Studies, English Language and Literature, and Visual Arts will have course requirements determined for them by their respective departments. However, many University of Chicago graduates who majored in languages, Fundamentals: Issues and Texts, and the natural and social sciences have gone on to have successful careers in journalism, publishing, entertainment, the arts, architecture, and design. While a conservatory or art-school education, for instance, is valuable for learning craft, the well-rounded and demanding liberal arts education offered by the College is perhaps the best preparation for a career in many of these fields.
UChicago Careers in Journalism, Arts, and Media complements the College’s emphasis on academics with one-on-one career advising and programming designed to connect students with emerging and established professionals in the fields of journalism, publishing, visual art, music, film, television, theater, architecture, design, and more. Internships, mentorships, apprenticeships, and collaborations with working professionals provide students with the hands-on experience and deep networking needed to launch successful careers.
The program is organized and managed by Career Advancement. The components include:
- Individual advising to help students win internships and jobs in their particular areas of interest
- Workshops with leading practitioners to develop practical skills and networking opportunities
- UChicago Careers in Journalism, Arts, and Media–wide emphasis on building a body of work, including an emphasis on personal entrepreneurship
- Grants and apprenticeships to help support students working in unpaid internships and student-initiated projects
- Advising of registered student organizations to help them grow and improve
The College curriculum provides excellent preparation for the study of law. More important than a specific major is the acquisition of certain skills necessary for the intelligent practice of law: the ability to communicate effectively in oral and written expression, a critical understanding of human institutions and values, and the ability to reason closely from given premises and propositions to tenable conclusions. Such skills can be developed in various majors and by taking courses in English language and literature, philosophy, public policy, American history, political science, mathematics, and economics.
Students interested in a career in law should use the resources provided by the UChicago Careers in Law program, which is organized and managed by the Career Advancement. UChicago Careers in Law supports students as they explore their interest in law through programming, internships, and advising.
Advising: Students have access to one-on-one advising with the program director of UChicago Careers in Law, an expert with extensive experience in the legal field. The program director provides students with personalized assistance in career exploration and planning, finding job and internship opportunities that match their interests, and preparing application materials for those positions. UChicago Careers in Law also assists students in targeting law schools, preparing successful applications, and choosing the most appropriate law school.
Workshops and Guest Speakers: UChicago Careers in Law workshops are held throughout the academic year and cover an array of current topics and issues in the field of law. These programs include alumni lawyers practicing in private, public, and nonprofit sectors who give students an accurate picture of professional experiences across a broad range of fields, including international law, corporate law, public interest, and government services.
Metcalf Internship Opportunities: Internships in law-related organizations provide students with on-the-job experience—which can be extremely useful in determining whether or not law is the correct path to take—and to explore different areas of legal practice. The Metcalf Internship Program provides paid, substantive internships exclusively available to UChicago students.
Treks: UChicago Careers in Law students visit public and private institutions in order to gain exposure to a wide range of legal careers and workplaces. Local Treks are available to students throughout the academic year and also include opportunities to meet with attorneys in such major legal markets as New York and Washington, DC.
Mentor Program: With 90 to 100 students participating each year, the Mentor Program creates a community between law students and undergraduates, providing students from the College with guidance and helpful insights into the law school experience. The Law School and the College have sustained a very close relationship over the years, and the College is consistently one of the largest feeder undergraduate schools to the Law School.
Public Policy and Service
The public and social service sectors cover a wide range of opportunities in government and nonprofits, including domestic and international policy, direct social service, philanthropy and development, and nonprofit consulting and administration, among many others. The UChicago Careers in Public Policy and Service program works with students interested in the government and nonprofit sectors, which include a diverse range of careers. Employers in these arenas look for individuals with a deep commitment to their organization's mission, and students who pursue courses of study that are interesting and exciting to them will be most successful in government and nonprofit careers. Through their rigorous academic studies, University of Chicago students learn many essential skills necessary to contribute meaningfully in the service fields. These include extensive qualitative and quantitative research skills, the ability to analyze complex problems and develop creative and effective solutions, exemplary written and oral communication skills, and the ability to manage and prioritize numerous projects and commitments.
UChicago Careers in Public Policy and Service (UCIPPS) programs and advising hours are open to students at all levels, and students may participate in the program at any point during their College years. Students interested in public policy and service are encouraged to meet with the UCIPPS advisers to begin to explore their specific areas of interest. Numerous resources are offered to educate students about specific areas within public and social service and to connect them with alumni and employers in their chosen fields. These resources include:
- Paid internship opportunities with government agencies and nonprofit organizations
- Skill-building workshops to educate students about how to navigate job searches and careers in the public and social service sectors
- Information sessions with employers to help students learn about different organizations and agencies and the types of opportunities available for students of all levels
- Panels with alumni from a variety of fields to offer students networking opportunities and the opportunity to learn how University of Chicago graduates have translated their educations into careers in these sectors
- Treks to such locations as Washington, DC, New York City, Chicago, and Springfield to visit a variety of organizations and agencies to learn about public and social service work in the field
Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math
UChicago Careers in Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math (UCISTEM) helps students explore, prepare for, and obtain careers or professional school placement in STEM fields. Students of any major may join UCISTEM, in which they have the opportunity to participate in an elective workshop curriculum as well as such experiential learning options as research assistantships, internships, externships, and innovation competitions. Opportunities for mentorship, alumni networking, and one-on-one advising are readily available as well. UCISTEM students have successfully gone on to graduate school programs and careers in a variety of fields, including alternative energy, biotechnology, entrepreneurship, and national laboratory research.
Components of the program include advising, workshops, and expert speakers, the Annual Undergraduate Research Symposium, research and internship opportunities, career treks, the Facilitating UChicago Students in Engineering (FUSE) cohort, and connections with such University partners as the Institute for Molecular Engineering, the Marine Biological Laboratory, and Fermi National Accelerator Laboratory. Benefits may include:
- Exploration of the diverse career options in STEM fields through workshops led by alumni, industry treks, and facility tours to such Chicagoland organizations as Argonne National Laboratory
- Exposure to industry information, workplace cultures, and networks of alumni mentors and student peers on diverse industry treks such as the Houston Energy Trek or the San Francisco Tech Trek
- Opportunities to hone skill sets for graduate school applications and employers such as GRE preparation and programming skill sets
- Finding laboratory positions on campus or off campus through the Metcalf Internship Program