CAPD Answers Parents and Supporters Questions

Answered by Eric Pavesic

There are multiple ways to support your student by exploring different interests for their major and future career. One way is to familiarize yourself with the resources available to students to explore different majors. Here are several resources to aid your student as they work towards declaring their major at MIT:

  • Many departments offer First-Year Discovery and Exploration subjects. These are low-unit subjects that can fit easily within your student’s schedule and provide a glimpse into many of the fields that might interest your student.

  • Academic Administrators may also serve as a key contact for your student to learn more about different courses at MIT and can help them connect to research or other opportunities within the departments

  • .Undergraduate Research (UROPs) and other experiential learning opportunities are a great compliment to your student’s studies to help them explore their interests and skill set related to different fields.

  • We explore their interests. CAPD can share with your student outcome information from recent graduates and help them develop skills to connect with and seek insight from alumni and employers. As they gather lots of great information about different courses at MIT, CAPD can help your student get organized and compare their findings as they look to make their first major decision.

    Answered by Tavi Sookhoo

    The pandemic affected many college students and overall the participation rate in experiences, including internships the summers of 2020 and 2021 decreased for MIT students. Even if your child did not get an internship last summer, they are still likely to find full time work. Most recently, the QS World University Rankings rated MIT #1 in graduate employability for 2022. In addition to internship experience, employers see value in students’ project work, research experience, extra-curricular activities and leadership roles which they would have participated in during the academic year.

    If your child is unsure of how to begin their full-time job search, their first step is to schedule an appointment with a CAPD advisor to develop a job search plan. Many resources are available to support students in their full-time job search, including career fairs, employer information sessions, job postings on Handshake, and most importantly, the vibrant MIT community of staff, faculty, and alumni. If your child is shifting their career focus, they might also consider completing an internship or temporary position after graduating, as these roles often lead to full-time job offers.

    Answered by Tianna Ransom

    I recommend suggesting to your student that they focus on submitting graduate school applications in the fall and then shift their attention to job applications after the graduate school applications are submitted. This strategy helps to align job offers with grad school admissions offers. Most graduate school applications are due in December, January or early February and they send admissions offers in March, April, and May. See “Prepare for Graduate & Professional School” for more information about the graduate application timeline.  

    However, even with starting the job search after submitting graduate school applications, your student might hear back from jobs first. If so, they can try negotiating the offer deadline so that they can receive admissions decisions from schools before committing to a job. Your student can schedule a meeting with an advisor to review tips for how to ask for an extension.  

    Despite negotiating job offer deadlines, your student might still need to respond to a job offer deadline before hearing back from admissions. In this case, it’s time for them to make a decision. I encourage you to ask your student what their priorities and preferences are to help them decide. CAPD advisors can also help your student consider their options and come up with a plan based on their short- and long-term goals.