Medieval literature expert now helps UO students prepare for the future.
By UO student Chelsea Fullmer
UO Assistant Director of Academic
Programs Kristi Lodge
It took Kristi Lodge, PhD ’10 five days to drive from the east coast to Oregon with her husband and two cats to pursue her PhD in English from the College of Arts and Sciences. It then took her less than a year to realize she no longer wanted to pursue a career in teaching, so she made the switch to administration and became the UO Career Center’s Assistant Director of Academic Programs.
Lodge earned her bachelor’s degree in English from Randolph-Macon Woman’s College (now Randolph College) in Virginia, and her master’s in English from Wake Forest University in North Carolina. After earning her master’s degree from Wake Forest, Lodge spent nine months in the career services department before making the trek to Oregon.
Lodge came to Oregon to pursue her PhD in English, with an emphasis in medieval literature. During her studies at the UO, Lodge as served as a graduate teaching fellow in the English department for the Writing 121 and 122 courses. After a time, she began to realize a shift in her career interests.
“My focus had been teaching, but what I’d really come to recognize is that I really love helping students,” Lodge said.
In 2006, while writing her dissertation, Lodge began thinking of alternatives to working in academia. With nine months under her belt in the Wake Forest career services office, Lodge went to the UO Career Center, a territory she was familiar with, and after interviewing, landed the position of Assistant Director of Academic Programs.
Lodge wears numerous hats around the Career Center: she is the program administrator for two programs, and also gives career counseling to students. The first program that Lodge administrates is a two-credit class assisting students in various departments across campus with interview practice, resume building, and internship seeking. The other program under Lodge’s belt is the GO Intern Program, an academic-internship program. With roughly 140 students enrolled this term in the various career center courses, Lodge keeps busy readying students for the job force by reminding students to focus on themselves.
“This is a chance to spend 10 weeks to think about themselves and invest in themselves, which you don’t get to do really very much,” Lodge said.
Lodge also gives career counseling to students, whether they are looking to improve their resume, apply for graduate school, or find internship and job opportunities. Lodge sees senior students about to graduate in her office the most, but reminds students that it is never too late to start taking advantage of the Career Center. In fact, students even have one calendar year to use Career Center resources after they graduate.
With many duties to perform throughout each day, Lodge enjoys the unexpected twists and turns within her roles as administrator and counselor.
“I’m really lucky to do a job that I’m passionate about,” Lodge said. “And I’m really lucky to be able to talk with all the students who come in that I see. Oregon students are just great. They are very passionate people and very insightful and motivated in so many different ways, so really, I’m lucky.”
And as the 2014 graduating class is looking at its last terms at the University of Oregon, Lodge has now seen almost two full cycles of students graduate, and looks to continue helping in the successes of students once they leave their alma mater.