What is Gateway?

What is Gateway?
Gateway, a well-regarded career development program, has served as the foundation of the Office of Career Services since 1994. Designed to provide students with guidance throughout their time at Lafayette, the Gateway program begins in the first semester. Enrollment provides students with many resources and benefits; it gives you an edge over the competition and prepares you for “the real world.”

Enrollment in Gateway means a commitment to self-discovery and self-awareness. It’s also a commitment to making optimal use of available resources to discover your ideal career path, including investigating options for graduate and/or professional school. The earlier you start, the easier it will be and the better your odds are for success. Students can only enroll in Gateway during their first or sophomore year, and more than 85 percent of Lafayette students do just that.

Participating students commit to consistent exploration of career and/or educational interests with individualized support from your Gateway counselor through all four years. Together, you identify activities that will move you forward toward your goals and develop a flexible road map for life after graduation. For example, students are connected with work opportunities through the January externship program, thanks to the more than 175 alumni who participate.

Among Gateway’s many benefits, students gain a deeper understanding of themselves. Students who go through the process ultimately gain valuable professional experiences, developing relationships and connections that can last a lifetime. When it’s time to land that perfect job, Lafayette’s Gateway “completers” stand out among other candidates as more focused and articulate than their peers—this testimony comes straight from employer feedback. And some students enjoy the program so much they want to share it with others, and apply to become a Gateway Ambassador.

The Gateway Program Process at a Glance:

  • First year: You’ll start evaluating how your interests, skills, and talents connect to specific career fields and opportunities for graduate study.
  • Sophomore year: You’ll begin to develop a network of contacts and have your first major career experience.
  • Junior year: You’ll continue to build and refine your network of contacts, expand your career-related skills, and begin to focus on the employers or graduate and professional schools best suited to your future plans.
  • Senior year: As your Lafayette education nears completion, Gateway’s counselors and resources can help you prepare for interviews, take advantage of your network of contacts, and help you land the job you want. Or you can gain assistance applying to the graduate or professional schools of your choice.

View the 2016-17 Gateway brochure here.