Our new series, #Pathways will help you gain insight into the many roles and industries our various alumni and partners are in. We want you to hear from the people who are in those fields now and have that insight to prepare you for the near future!
The first interview is with Jefferson Agyapong, First Workings 2015 class, and current Assistant Director of Admissions at Babson College. Jefferson was a part of our inaugural class of students and we highly enjoyed watching his academic and professional career bloom since his junior year of high school.
Through this interview, Jefferson will give you insight into his story within higher education, a career path many of you are interested in today.
Tell me about yourself:
My name is Jefferson Agyapong First Workings Co ’15, DPCHS Co’16, and Boston College Co’20. During my junior year of high school, I was dedicated to beginning a career in Investment Banking and studying Finance which led me to First Workings where I interned at Mercer Partners LP. My experience was amazing; I learned so much about how hedge funds operate, the stock market, and gained real-life experience in the field I dreamed of. I came to realize the career path I dreamed of actually wasn’t where my passions aligned. This allowed me to open the scope in the types of colleges I was applying to and the journey led me to Boston College where I graduated with a BA in Communications with a minor in African and African Diaspora Studies.
After graduating during the pandemic, the only thing on my mind was to get a job that was offering a substantial income so that my mother can focus her resources on my younger siblings. I ended up accepting my first corporate job offer and began my career in Workforce Staffing and Recruitment. Although an amazing work experience, I came to realize my work wasn’t what made me happy, and it was just a job I was doing to receive a paycheck. This caused me to pivot my focus and career landing me in Higher Education. Now for about 8 months, I am currently an Assistant Director of Undergraduate Admission at Babson College (#1 School for Entrepreneurship)!
Tell me about what led up to earning your current position:
Once I realized I was unhappy with my career choice, I began reflecting on the moments of my college experience where I felt the happiest. As I reflected, my mind consistently went to all my experiences in my school’s Student Admission Program. I connected with a friend who worked in the program with me and currently works at Babson College. After a couple of weeks of conversation, one day he sent me the link to an application for the Assistant Director position, then recommended I apply because he felt that I was the perfect fit for the team and they needed someone like me.
What does a typical workday look like?
I compare my work to full-cycle recruitment. Depending on the time of year my day-to-day work can shift from traveling to connect and build relationships with different high schools across my application territories to reading applications from Early Action, Early Decision I and II, and Regular Decision applicants. Once the application season is over and decisions have been released, we shift gears and create an immense amount of programming for prospective students to attend to gain a greater and deeper understanding of Babson. Throughout the year we host Information sessions, tours, and virtual events to spread general awareness about Babson and inform upcoming students and families about the different opportunities Babson has for students. Regularly, I connect with students, counselors, and families about the application process and answer any questions/offer any advice on how to create the best possible application.
What do you enjoy the most about your work?
My favorite part of my role is honestly connecting with the students. The way they look at the world is so different from my peers and colleagues, yet the drive is there. This world we live in becomes more complex as days go on, and students are creating more nuanced perspectives and interests as they develop. One of the craziest things is that high school itself is becoming progressively more difficult for students, yet they are capable of excelling far beyond academics. I have met students that have their own businesses, have many humanitarian experiences and goals, and are driven by some of the most unique circumstances. My work reminds me that the future is limitless.
What is a piece of advice you would like to give to the greater alumni community?
We spend so much time, energy, and resources to get to the places we are motivated to get to; it’s very common to follow the route to gain as much financial capital as possible, but it is easy to lose sight of passion. We have worked too hard to not be happy with our careers or other aspects of our lives. Although unknown sometimes, a change is all we need to get to the happier version of ourselves. When I worked solely to make money, it dwindled the passion I had for things I was actually passionate about. You don’t want life to go by and realize you aren’t happy or didn’t explore the parts of life that genuinely make you happy.