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Steph Scholl

How did you explore your interests and decide on a major/majors?

I didn’t intend to major in Spanish, but it was the only subject that has truly held my interest. I became fascinated by Spanish and Latin American history, culture, and literature over the course of my entire education. When I learned that I could earn 4 Spanish credits by spending a semester abroad, declaring my major was a no-brainer.

Describe a moment or experience you had in college that helped define your career path.

My experience abroad and especially at my internship, I learned that I really can pursue a career that requires Spanish. This can be a scary thing for someone who is not a native speaker, but my internship taught me that I am absolutely capable of working in a completely Spanish-speaking professional setting and that I should be unafraid to pursue opportunities of this nature.

What steps did you take at Lake Forest College to prepare for your career?

At Lake Forest College I joined groups and sat on leadership boards in order to gain leadership experience and make connections. I think the best thing someone can do to prepare for their career is to establish as many personal and professional connections as possible, and I capitalized on that at Lake Forest. That’s how I actually got my job! I let my sorority’s advisor know that I was seeking opportunities and followed up relentlessly. My persistence paid off, and I received the job offer the day before I graduated. She actually became my manager!

What role did your internship play in shaping your career path?

Like I said, I am unafraid of pursuing opportunities that require English/Spanish bilingualism. I also learned that I prefer a office culture similar to that of my internship, which is casual, relaxed, and hardworking. Luckily I have found that at my current position.

What would you recommend Lake Forest College students considering a career in your field do to prepare?

The most important skill in staffing is time management. Because I rely on other companies in order to do business, I have a strict 8-5 window to generate business and make things happen. It can be difficult to stay focused and complete tasks and responsibilities when the phone calls, emails, and fires never stop! 

How did the Department of Modern Languages, the Career Advancement Center and/or the Forester community give you an edge on taking your first steps after graduation?

The Department of MLL, and more specifically my advisor, Gizella Meneses, gave me so many leadership and involvement opportunities that not only look fantastic on my resume but provided me with real leadership and other experience. Through the DML, I sat on the student academic advisory board, joined Phi Sigma Iota as the secretary, and received recognition of my hard work. Membership in Phi Sigma Iota also provides me with preferential consideration if I choose to pursue an opportunity in the US Government.

What have you found the most rewarding in your career and life after graduation?

The most rewarding part of my career is that I employ people. I meet people every day who are unemployed or miserable in their current jobs, and I help them find better opportunities. It’s so rewarding to receive emails or calls from candidates that I place in jobs who absolutely love their new positions, the people they work with, and thank me for helping them support their families.