The following email was sent to the Barnard community on January 24, 2020:
Dear All --
This semester, we will celebrate two years of Beyond Barnard.
When we were launched on February 5, 2018, we promised that we would work together to reimagine support for students and alumnae in the areas of career development, experiential education, competitive fellowships, and graduate and professional school. But frankly, we could not have anticipated the tremendous response of the Barnard community -- students, alumnae, faculty, staff, parents, and friends of the College alike -- to these efforts.
Two years into this work, the Beyond Barnard team has conducted 8,000 individual advising sessions on everything from cover letters and resumes to law school, PhD programs, arts internships, case interviews, negotiation best practices, and everything in between.
We've held events with more than 200 employers and graduate institutions, raised $8 million to support internships and summer research opportunities for students, welcomed more than 250 alumnae to campus as distinguished speakers and advisors, and added more than 1,500 users to our virtual mentoring platform Barnard Connect. Across the last two graduating classes of 2019 and 2018, more than 90% of Barnard's most recent alumnae found work or had enrolled in graduate school just six months after walking across the Radio City Music Hall stage at Commencement. And every day, Beyond Barnard's office hums with activity and conversation about futures in the arts, academia, business, nonprofits, government, and more.
Simply: thank you.
Thank you for entrusting us with leading Barnard's charge toward advancing and supporting the careers of this institution's students and alumnae. Thank you for giving us the opportunity to build an inclusive, supportive, and optimistic space, where we work and meet with brilliant individuals whose futures are always evolving in unexpected ways. With your help, we are saying with conviction that a Barnard education orients students toward a life full of purpose -- one that is enriched by an enduring commitment to the liberal arts. No matter where one's career trajectory leads, a Barnard education lasts for every student and alumna's entire life.
We also wanted to give you a sense of where we are heading in the months and years to come. Even as Beyond Barnard transitions out of its start-up phase and thinks together with the community about its long term sustainability, we want to continue to innovate and change with a dynamism that meets your expectations.
Here's what you can expect in the next year:
- We will continue our commitment to the academic year theme of Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion in the Workforce and in Graduate School. This will entail conversations with employers and student leaders at today's Spring Semester Opportunities Fair about disability and difference in the workplace, led by Holly Tedder, Director of the Center for Accessibility Resources and Disability Services (CARDS). It will mean building our existing programs for the First Generation, Low-Income community. And in March, we'll hit the road to hold a Beyond Barnard conversation in Los Angeles with Barnard alumnae and Netflix Chief Inclusion Officer Vernā Myers. As media and entertainment was a key industry for Barnard alumnae of the Class of 2019, we're excited (and unsurprised) that a Barnard alumna is leading the way in this space at one of the world's most innovative entertainment companies.
- We'll continue the expansion of dynamic 4+1 Pathways in partnership with the faculty, announcing new partnerships with Columbia University that allow Barnard students to complete a bachelor's degree at Barnard and Master's at Columbia in five years.
- In March, we'll host our second Field Trip outside New York, bringing 16 students to Cambridge, MA for conversations with alumnae about innovation, tech, and biotech. The Field Trip Program will continue to provide opportunities for students to meet with alumnae right here in New York and around the United States (with zero out-of-pocket costs to participants), building meaningful connections with a wide range of individuals.
- This summer, we will launch the first cohort of Annenberg GRoW Foundation interns in the Arts. This faculty-led program will give students the chance to pursue internships in institutions and organizations around New York City in the performing and visual arts, including dance and theatre. They'll come together regularly for conversations about the intersection of their internship experiences with their coursework in the humanities and social sciences. This represents only the latest in a series of expansions of internship opportunities through the Beyond Barnard Internship Program.
- And we will announce the selection of Beyond Barnard's Alumnae Circle -- a group of distinguished alumnae committed to helping to foster the growth of Beyond Barnard as we continue to serve this community.
But most importantly, we will continue to meet with our students and alumnae every single day. No matter your aspirations, we're here to help you explore possibilities, pursue meaningful connections, and chart a career and future that align with your intellectual work. If you'd like to get in touch, please email us directly at firstname.lastname@example.org. We will absolutely be happy to respond, whether you need advising, want to volunteer, or have questions that we can address.
There is more work to be done. And we will continue to be grateful for the energy, effort, and resources of this singular community. On behalf of the entire team at Beyond Barnard, thank you for a fantastic first two years. We look forward to talking more soon.
Nikki Youngblood Giles and A-J Aronstein
Deans, Beyond Barnard