'...And You Don't Pitch a Fit'
By Glenn Triezenberg, Director of Career Development

Being a grandpa is the best job I’ve ever had. Andrew (8), Anna (6), Simon (4) and Katherine Jeanne (1) are always glad to see me, and they have yet to tell me how great my sins and miseries are or how hopelessly stupid I am.

I regularly serve my grandchildren root beer floats when they come over. Recently, Simon, the 4-year-old, complained in a very cute and loud voice, “How come mine so little?” “Because,” I said, “4-year-olds don’t get big floats.” “Yes they do!” he explained. At this point his brother, Andrew, saved me. “Simon,” he said, “you get what you get, and you don’t pitch a fit.” Somehow Simon understood and didn’t pitch a fit—not this time.


That’s the way it is for new college graduates seeking their first job after graduation. Like Simon, some ask, “Why so little?” I tell them, “Your first job is where you start, not where you finish—your first job is rarely a great job, that’s the way it is—trust me.”

“So what was your first job?” some ask. I explain that after getting married right after graduation followed by a lavish, all-inclusive, two-day honeymoon in Traverse City, Mich., costing $126, I went to work as the program director at YMCA Camp Manitou-Lin. I was paid $1.62 an hour plus room and board. Nancy, my wife, was paid $1.16 an hour to be director of arts and crafts, a job she was highly qualified for as a math major who graduated fifth in her class with a GPA of 3.92. (She got a B- in softball.) I started graduate school the September after graduation but was soon called to active duty in the United States Army, where I earned the princely sum of $6.02 an hour plus room and board. Three years later I started my first job as a clinical social worker making $9,000 a year—the same amount Anonymous Bosch is paid these days for each Spark magazine article he writes. You get what you get, and you don’t pitch a fit! That’s the way it is!

Class acts

“Class Act Recognition” goes to my career development staff and specifically to Beth Cok, Laurie Lemmen and business professor Cal Jen for their leadership in achieving “Top Fifteen College Internship Program” recognition for Calvin College by U.S. News and World Report. This is a college-wide achievement, but Beth, Laurie and Cal deserve 2011 Class Act Recognition. Thank you!

Class Act Recognition also goes to Matt Shatto ’00 and Nate Karsten ’00, managing partners of Same Day Delivery Inc. Matt and Nate have been faithfully hiring Calvin College graduates for several years, and their business is thriving. Thank you!

My final Class Act designee is Lee Heyer ’08. Lee visited the career office before graduating. He did not have a specific job or position in mind, but told career counselor Meredith Segur that he wanted to live and work in New York City. Meredith helped Lee find a position as a legal assistant with a New York law firm. Since then Lee has helped three other Calvin alumni find employment in the firm. Thanks, Lee. Keep up the good work!

Stay in touch and keep your job postings coming. We need them and we need you!

All the best,

You Can Help!

Alumni networking is a key job search success factor. You can help graduating seniors and fellow alumni in the following ways:

1.  E-mail job openings that you are aware of to career@calvin.edu or call the career development office at (616) 526-6485. We will post the positions on CalvinLink and contact Calvin seniors and alumni who may be an employment fit for these positions.

2.  If your employer uses interns, full-time or part-time, during the school year or summer, e-mail your internship openings to Laurie Lemmen or call (616) 526-8744.

3.  If you are an employer and would like to partner with our office, e-mail Glenn Triezenberg or call (616) 526-6485.

We want to work with you!