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The Dartmouth
June 17, 2024 | Latest Issue
The Dartmouth

Alternatives to recruiting

Along with the crowd of future lawyers, doctors, consultants and investment bankers, there are a few graduates who have decided to break from the crowd.

While their classmates go to graduate school or work for a corporation, these graduates will pursue a sport on the Olympic level, international travel and furthering their educations in an entirely different fashion.

Oh, Canada

James Jarrett's post-graduation goal is definitely concrete, but elusive: an Olympic gold medal.

Jarrett will be trying out for the Canadian national heavyweight crew team, with the goal of reaching the 2000 Olympics in Sydney, Australia.

A longtime rower, Jarrett has competed at the highest levels of the sport, and rowed with some of the sport's best.

"I rowed on a boat that won a gold medal at the US Rowing National Championships," he said. "Three other people went on to be in the '96 Olympics, and two were in the '92 Olympics."

Jarrett has been chasing his goal of making the Canadian national boat since his freshman year, but was unfortunately cut one month before the world championships following his first year at the College.

"To be competitive, I would have had to drop out of Dartmouth," he said. Jarrett chose to stay, and said he has benefited from the decision.

"Dartmouth is very unique," he said. "They give you the opportunity to excel ... I found ways to push myself ... and certain life skills that will help you succeed at anything you do."

However, Jarrett said balancing his life at school with his commitment to rowing has sometimes been difficult.

"It was a very tough December and end of winter," he said. "I was paying attention to how my training for crew was going."

One major concern for Jarrett has been the risk of taking time off after school to pursue this dream. Though he was offered jobs at some investment banking firms, he said he ultimately decided the time off would not adversely affect his career aspirations.

"I've thought about a lot of the risks," he said. "It would not set me back in terms of getting the kind of job I was offered."

Regardless of the outcome of his tryout, Jarrett said his post-rowing plans will probably involve some investment banking work, and "after that, I'm going to see what happens."

South of the border

After four years of schooling at the College, international student Andres Dandler is heading back to his native Peru, to enrich the country, and, possibly, himself.

Dandler has a number of ideas for ventures in Peru, including a planetarium and a small company which would provide some products that are not currently available there.

Dandler, who will be in Hanover next year to earn a Bachelor of Engineering degree, said his primary plan is to return to Peru and open a new planetarium in Lima, the capital city.

"It's kind of crazy, but I have had this dream since freshman year, and I need time to follow it," he said.

Dandler said he would need approximately $10 million to build the structure, and said he has been researching fundraising possibilities from alumni, charitable foundations and international organizations like the United Nations.

"The plantarium has huge potential," he said. "There is a small planetarium ... built essentially by a groups of Americans 50 years ago. It was outdated when they built it, so by now it is obsolete."

Dandler also has a backup plan of sorts, as one of his friends wants to open a small company with him, manufacturing small devices for laboratories, a market which he said is untapped in Latin and South American nations.

As they are both amateur astronomers, Dandler said, he and his friend hope to eventually make small telescopes, another product he said is not available in those parts.

Whichever path he follows, if not both, Dandler said his engineering background at the College will be extremely useful.

"The engineering background has a very strong focus on ... group projects and teamwork," he said. "It is a good skill to have ... [since] I am going to be working in teams."

Land of the rising sun

One senior is carrying her Dartmouth education to its logical conclusion. After four years of studying Japanese and Asian Studies, Lisa O'Brien is heading to Shichigahama, Japan, a town two hours north of Tokyo, the Japanese capital city.

O'Brien will leave for Japan in late July.

Once there, she will assume a salaried position working in a local government office, teaching English and helping foreign visitors.

The experience is a part of the Japan Exchange and Teaching program.

O'Brien said the JET program was "very well known," and had first attracted her attention in high school, where she met someone from the JET.

She began the application process in October of 1996, because, as she said, the job is competitive.

The job, she said, is well-tailored to her interests, and related to her future pursuits, as she hopes to apply for graduate study in Japanese history from Japan.

The job will test "important language skills next year," she said. "I wanted to be able to use Japanese ... [and] my personal goal is to become fluent at graduate school."

'Opportunity knocks'

Xantha Bruso, a geography and Asian Studies double major, said she decided to join a program going to China next fall because she did not want a "desk job."

"I've had a few ... like that and they were so boring," she said.

Bruso will spend the summer at home in Alaska, then join a fall language program which will send her to farming regions in southern China.

Her participation, she said, is partly an effort to solidfy her knowledge of the Chinese language.

"I'll be learning more Chinese there," she said. "I've had four years, and it's not up to par. If I didn't learn it now and learn it well, I'd just forget all of it."

This visit will not be Bruso's first voyage to China. She participated in the Chinese Foreign Study Program here at the College, and had been once before at the age of 14.

She said alumni contacts were helpful in establishing contacts in China.

Bruso said she would like to stay in China for a year or two, but her plans are not yet "set in stone."

"If opportunity knocks, that's where I will go," she said.