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Brandeis University's Community Newspaper — Waltham, Mass.

Hiatt hires permanent director

Published: August 31, 2007
Section: News

Following an almost year-long search for a new permanent director for the Hiatt Career Center, the position is finally filled. Monday marked the beginning of the next chapter in Hiatts saga.

Joseph DuPont, a lawyer-turned-career-services-specialist began his position as the new director of Hiatt Career Center.

The Hiatt Career Center has been without a permanent director since the resignation of former director Marty Ford in November of last year, and has been overseen by short term consultant Barbara Fienman as interim director.

My job was to insure that the staff continued to provide quality service to students, Fienman wrote in an email to The Hoot.

Fienman explained that Hiatt has hired some new staff and that any new changes will come from the new director and the staff.

This year, the Hiatt staff has already sent out a number of emails advising students of what opportunities Hiatt has for them and has begun training Hiatt student ambassadors for their expanding student advocate role within Hiatt.

DuPont has only been on campus intermittently throughout the summer and plans to hone his vision for Hiatt over the next couple months.

Prior to DuPonts Brandeis position, he was responsible for setting up Teach For Americas first career services office which serves its core members and alumni.

I applied for the [director position] because I love the core values of Brandeis and that they are promoted so heavily on the website. You can see them play out on campus in terms of what the students are interested in and how they interact with each other, DuPont noted.

He first heard about this job through a colleague who forwarded the job announcement to him.

For DuPont, overarching goals for Hiatt include, Strongly articulating for students how they can best become more self-aware of what they want to do, explore different career options, and get connected to wherever those opportunities are.

Students such as Anna Merport 08 have used Hiatt throughout their Brandeis careers. In August of this year Merport scheduled two appointments at Hiatt.

I used Hiatt to help me find possible grad school and careers after college. They pointed me to their website which has different resources, such as personality tests and job searches. The only problem is that their website is under construction and didnt work all that well, making it less than helpful, but I did find the personality test interesting. They were helpful enough for the simple questions I had.

Rather than solely focusing on students success while at Brandeis and their immediate job or academic prospects beyond, DuPont wants to equip people with the lifelong skills they will need in their career. He titles these important abilities as tools of discovery.

As he explained, [students] are going to leave Brandeis at some point and are still going to continue to evolve and grow as people. Hopefully you will have the resources at your disposal to help manage your whole career because of some of the work that we [at Hiatt] have done with you.

Changing career interests is something with which DuPont is personally familiar. A high school teacher prior to going to law school at Georgetown, DuPont has always loved working with people. He worked in corporate law in New York City prior to working at NYUs career office, and setting up the career office at Teach For America.

DuPont moved out of law when he realized he preferred collaborative work to what he feels is necessary to represent your client truly well, which is to be pretty adversarial at times.

At Brandeis, DuPont is finding the, combination of rigorous intellectual environment, a strong community, and students who are highly qualified for lots of different things.

The collaboration is a really exciting dynamic to me. To take Hiatt to that new level the office will need to collaborate with a lot of different partners.

Hiatt is looking to reach more of the student population this year through connecting more with groups on campus.

As Eliz Matzner 08 explained, who has never utilized Hiatt, Im pretty lazy, and I also feel like its not all that geared toward me as a theatre major.

One of Hiatts expected partners is the Student Union. DuPont is scheduled to meet with them next week to talk about upcoming projects.

The Union will work closely with Hiatts new director, Joseph DuPont, to greatly expand the centers services, wrote Kimberlee Bachman, the Director of Academic Affairs at the Student Union in a campuswide email. She also added to the Hoot that we will help them with their restructuring this year, so it is an even more valuable resource for the students. I was on the interview committee, and we saw many candidates. He shone above the rest and we are looking forward to working with him.