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Workplace Expert Steve Langerud Recommends an ‘Inside-Out’ Approach to Support MUM Students and Alumni

Steve Langerud

Steve Langerud

Steve Langerud, MUM’s expert on global development and workplace success, believes that MUM graduates are uniquely positioned for career success. As the former dean of Experiential Education at Grinnell College and director of professional opportunities at Depauw University, Langerud has spent the last 20 years counseling thousands of alumni and students on career issues.

A nationally-known workplace consultant, Langerud has been featured in the New York Times, Wall Street Journal, Time Magazine, Fast Company, and on NPR, Voice of America, and He works frequently with colleges, nonprofits, government agencies and businesses, and has appeared on television and on the internet, speaking about employment and workplace topics ranging from resume writing to using job boards to developing a strategic career plan.

When working with people on career and life planning issues, Langerud favors an “inside-out” approach.

“New graduates face the big questions,” says Langerud. “What can I do with my degree? With my life? How do I sort everything out?” Many young people who are bright and creative are good at too many things, which can make choosing just one daunting.

“The job of faculty and staff,” he says, “is to help them reframe the question of ‘What should I do?’ into a process. Working from the inside out means starting from a place of being at peace with who you are and what you want, and then figuring out how to get to where you want to go.”

Langerud sees MUM students as having a strong advantage due to the university’s focus on inner development. Consciousness-Based℠ education (CBE), which was pioneered at MUM, emphasizes the development and cultivation of one’s total potential, and works side by side with rigorous coursework in traditional academics which are taught in a way that relates back to the Self.

“MUM students look deeply into themselves and come to understand what they value, which skills they love to use, what kind of people they want to be around, and what environments energize them,” he says. “That’s the place from which you make good decisions.”

Many employers are seeking college graduates who possess a breadth and depth of abilities and potentials, rather than necessarily a tight focus in a single subject area — another advantage for MUM graduates who have benefited from CBE’s focus on self-knowledge. Employers are hungry for the very qualities that CBE cultivates, such as critical thinking, creativity, clarity, problem solving ability, relationship building, and collaboration.

“As graduates prepare to enter the working world, they are bombarded by information and input,” says Langerud. “They’re immersed in work content, skills development, relationships, cultural change, geographic change. The clarity and centeredness of CBE students allows them to take in all that input and step back and make sense of it all. Ultimately, that’s what creates career success.”

Langerud develops MUM programs in international and experiential learning, alumni outreach, and development and fundraising.


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