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Liz at Black Canyon of the Gunnison, Colorado

Elizabeth “Liz” Dexter-Wilson, M.S.

Career and Professional Development Coordinator

B.A. Psychology, 1984, Purdue University, West Lafayette, IN

M.S. Education, 1990, Purdue University, West Lafayette, IN

My Major Path

  • 1 st Major: Recreation Studies
  • 2 nd Major: Psychology
  • 3 rd Major: Journalism
  • 4 th and Final Major: Psychology
  • Master’s Degree in Education

My Career Path

  • 1 st Professional Job: Vocational Case Coordinator, Mental Health Center
  • 2 nd Professional Job: Grant Manager, Community College Women’s Program
  • 3 rd Professional Job: Case Coordinator, Developmentally Delayed Adult Employment Services
  • 4 th Professional Job: Intensive Caseworker, Social Services Agency
  • 5 th Professional Job: Career Development Director, Purdue University, College of Liberal Arts
  • 6th, and current, Professional Job: Career Services Coordinator, Spring Hill College

My Most Outrageous Interview Experience

After a reasonably positive interview with a small college in Utah, I was invited to lunch by one of my interviewers. She told me she had made reservations at a restaurant in the next town which was about 12 miles down the road. Unfortunately, she needed me to drive because her right leg was in a cast. I agreed and quickly regretted it once I discovered the car was a manual transmission and I didn’t know how to drive a manual transmission car. She talked me through the experience and, after several stops and starts and an errand to the post office, we made it to and from lunch without harming the car. I wasn’t offered the job but the good news is I now know how to drive a manual transmission car!

My Worst Job

My second professional job was as a Grant Manager. I took the job thinking I could actually do it. I was drastically mistaken! I had no clue how to manage much of anything, I had some uncooperative co-workers that I didn’t know how to handle and I was so far in over my head that I didn’t even know where to start. After six months of trying not to look incompetent, I managed to get nothing done and look incompetent anyway! This fiasco resulted in a pink slip-also referred to as being canned, let go, being fired, sent packing, etc… Needless to say, it took several years to build back my self esteem. This experience occurred in December of 1993 and it still haunts me sometimes. Although, I must say it is probably one of the best things that ever happened to me professionally! I am a much better professional because of this experience. Sometimes I think everyone should experience being fired one time in their life. It can truly be a defining moment!

My Dream Job

To be a member of the pit crew for Jeff Gordon’s NASCAR team.

My Words of Inspiration for Students

James A. Michener, American Author of over 40 books and Pulitzer Prize winner for fiction in 1948, once said that he never wrote anything until he was 40 years old. Prior to that, he had spent a great deal of time trying to figure out who he was and what he believed in. He felt it was impossible for young people to waste time. He believed that anything a person did was worth their time. It is a person’s experiences that makes them who they are. So, keep this in mind when you start to worry about or stress over your indecisions. Think about what you have learned from each experience you have had. And, take advantage of that knowledge as you move onto new experiences. Take risks and try things that may feel scary to you. This is what will empower you and make you a better person!