Central's Most Eligible Bachelors

Story By Kateri Moseley

We have all been asked that age-old question – what do you want to be when you grow up?  

Some of us may have said space cowboy, maybe animal therapist or fairy princess. Unfortunately, when we get to college we realize that those are not exactly viable career options and after working our way through our general education requirements, we realize that we are facing that same question again. 

What do you want to be when you grow up? 

Here at Central we have over 300 majors, minors and certifications to choose from, and multiple on-campus resources that help us make sure the decision we are making is the right one for us. 

Wanting to help fellow students make this decision easier, Pulse decided to highlight some of the lesser known or newer programs at Central, to save students from the world of blind dating. Let's meet our most eligible bachelors! 

Hyped about Hops 

In April of 2015 the announcement was made that Central Washington University was offering a four-year Craft Brewing Bachelors of Science Degree, which allows students to learn in-depth about the science of brewing and the brewing industry. According to the Craft Brewing program, the degree is “built upon a strong foundation in science and is focused on providing students with content, experience, and skills in brewing science.”  

The program offers a hands-on approach that includes lab time, field trips and practice creating individualized brews. Alumnus Matt Jacobi’s review of the program informed students about the hands-on training in brewing and studying the aspects of different beers through exercises that allowed students to taste, smell and visually describe beers. This was also one of Jacobi’s favorite aspects of the program. “I enjoyed the hands-on experience,” he says, “and working with a team of other students to understand how to improve the brewing process before, during and after brewing the beer.” 

Some students are drawn to the program because they are interested in the science behind brewing. Others look forward to working in the job field and find Central’s program to be a good start for that goal. Jacobi, looking to return to school after leaving the Navy, was brewing beer as a hobby but wanted to take it to the next level. After looking for brewing programs that were being offered he ultimately decided that Central’s Craft Brewing program was the best way to turn his hobby into a career.  

When asked what made this program so unique, Jacobi highlighted the resources presented to him and his fellow classmates for employment post-graduation. “I learned quickly that finding a job at a brewery or in any business that works with brewers was much different than the normal job searching process I was used to. Job applications are pretty much non-existent and job postings aren’t common place, so you have to contact breweries directly and hope there is an opening.” Luckily for Jacobi and many students like him, Central’s brewing program contains faculty that have ties to the industry who are able to help students make connections before they graduate. Jacobi now works as a brewery at Paradise Creek Brewery in Pullman, Wash.  

To learn more about the Craft Brewing program please contact Steve Wagner, Program Director. 

Wind Farms, Solar Farms and Power Systems, Oh My! 

Have an interest in bettering the outdoors and aiding in the creation of some of the leading solutions of our time? Then you may be interested in the Integrated Energy Management degree here at Central. Graduating their first student in June of 2017, the Integrated Energy Management program is young in the degree world of Central.  

IEM offers an interdisciplinary approach at allowing students to specialize in policy, business, or power systems, with many students pairing their IEM degree with bachelor's programs like Economics for Policy or Mechanical Engineering Technology. IEM advisor Dr. Elvin Delgado explains that the program offers “extensive hands-on experience via field trips to regional energy facilities like the Wild Horse Wind and Solar Farm” and through a unique professional apprenticeship program where the IEM degree’s board of professional advisors engage with students to help them “succeed at shaping the future of energy.”  

The ability to face critical challenges, create solutions to global issues and make life-changing innovations is one reason that Delgado thinks students may be interested in the IEM program. Additionally, the job market for students with degrees in IEM is on the rise. Central’s degree, in fact, was created in collaboration with the region’s top energy employers to make sure students had all the teaching and training to be as successful and marketable as possible after they graduate. “Because the field is rapidly evolving and growing, it demands big picture thinkers, creative problem solvers, analytical minds, and excellent communicators,” says Delgado. The IEM program at Central helps students on the right path to get there. 

“Most importantly,” says Delgado, “our program empowers students to truly shape the future not just for themselves, but for the world. That’s pretty special, and students want to be a part of it.”  

To learn more about the Integrated Energy Management degree program contact Elvin Delgado or head to an Energy Management Club to learn more, meet current students and participate in events. 

On apprend le Francais 

As a student at Central you may have heard of the World Languages Department, or at least had an idea that foreign language education was happening on campus. Even better—along with Spanish and American Sign Language, students at Central can also learn French! 

The French bachelor's program is designed to pair with a second major, according to the Chair of the World Languages Department, Dr. Michael Johnson. After completing the first 15 credits of the major, students then have the opportunity to finish their last 30 credits at the program’s partner institution, the Université d'Orléans near Loire Valley in France. Along with classes teaching the language, Central’s French program also teaches French cinema, French-language comics and in the next year will offer classes in French cuisine and Introduction to French Culture.  

Multilanguage skills can help students stand out against their counterparts when applying for jobs or moving into professional roles. According to Dr. Johnson, “French is the second most widely learned foreign language after English, and the ninth most widely spoken language in the world.” Companies both domestic and foreign look for students with knowledge of the French language as they can be utilized globally. This type of international access to jobs and opportunities is a large reason why Dr. Johnson thinks the French program is attractive to students.  

Globalization is continuing to shape today’s market, so knowledge of another culture and language is a great asset to students wanting to work in nearly any industry. Dr. Johnson agrees, saying that he would advocate “learning any language in order to develop your intercultural competence skill set,” but feels that “French is particularly useful given the combined economic power of French-speaking regions.” According to Dr. Johnson, the industries in which knowing French will be most useful would be the tourism industry, luxury industries like fashion and automotive or diplomatic/government/NGO work.  

To learn more about the program, visit the World Languages and Cultures table during fairs or College of Arts and Humanities Open House events, or email Dr. Michael Johnson to talk further about the program! 

Create-Your-Own Social Sciences Degree 

Still not sure what you want to study? Or, know exactly what you want to do with your career but can’t find the right major program to get you there? A Bachelor of Science in Interdisciplinary Studies – Social Sciences could be the best option for you. This degree helps students who are interested in topics that don’t fit cleanly in traditional departmental boundaries. Students in the Interdisciplinary Studies degree get to design their course of study as long as they take courses in at least three disciplines within the Social Sciences. 

Recent program alumna Anna Carins says she was drawn to the program because of the course option and flexibility it offered. “I was interested in psychology, sociology and women and gender courses, and this program offered all of these areas of interest within the program,” she shares. Additionally, the access of classes online allowed Carins to continue working and gain experience while completing her degree. Carins most enjoyed the variety of courses offered to her. She felt it was a well-rounded set of courses, which gave her “broader views in many areas.” 

Along with the program's unique opportunities for students to create their degree and have a hands-on role in their education, each student who participates gets to walk away with a program experience specific to themselves. “My experience in this program ... has been unique [because] I have had the opportunity to work for a higher education institution that has supported me in my academics, as well as my professional growth,” shares Carins. Carins is now an advisor at Central and is glad that she’s able to translate her experience in the bachelor's program to the help she gives her advisees as they explore career options themselves.   

Alena Yastchenko, advisor for the Interdisciplinary Studies – Social Science program, says students have had ample success following graduation. Students have gone into social work, nonprofit and NGO work including human rights, government work, human resources, higher education, therapeutic professions and law. “Those who moved onto graduate school have obtained Masters' in psychology, social work, law and justice and political science. Several have obtained doctorate degrees in law, physician’s assistant and physical therapy,” says Yastchenko. 

To learn more about the Interdisciplinary Studies – Social Science degree please contact program advisor Alena Yastchenko. 

Fairy princess, environmental technology designer, space cowboy, craft brewer?  

If you’re still unsure about which major to pick, remember that there are many resources on campus like the Career Services Office, Advising and individual major departments to help you pick the right path. 

So, what do you want to be when you grow up?