Launchpad for Success

What is Launchpad for Success?

Launchpad for Success (LP4S) is a two-year career development program that emphasizes mentoring, financial literacy, professional/personal development and experiential learning. Rooted in equity, Launchpad is designed to create meaningful career pathways for incoming freshmen and rising sophomores – especially those who identify as African American, Latino/a, Asian American and Native American (AALANA).   

Through this model, Launchpad will create a campus community in which all students have access to broad opportunities for career development during their time at College of Charleston, paving the way for increased student retention, graduation, post-graduate success and alumni engagement.

Program Benefits

• Quarterly incentives for program milestones    
• Peer coaching in small group settings   
• Experiential learning opportunities  
• A network of peers and campus/community professionals

APPLY

What can Launchpad do for me?

You’ll receive additional academic advising through the Academic Advising & Planning Center and participate in peer coaching sessions and workshops. You’ll also take part in at least one of the following experiential learning opportunities prior to completing the program:

  • internship.
  • on or off-campus job.
  • research or study abroad.  

Through this equity-minded, sequential program, you will focus on developing skills that are critical to helping you get a job after graduation. Skills like:

  • self-management
  • career development
  • social/civic responsibility
  • diversity, equity, inclusion and belonging
  • global consciousness
  • leadership development

Frequently Asked Questions

Is Launchpad a class and will I be graded for my participation?

Launchpad is not a class, so you will not receive a grade for your participation. However, you will participate in modules that include peer coaching, monthly workshops, and challenges and receive points each semester for the modules you complete. These modules will help you build skills so that you're prepared to enter the workforce and succeed after graduation. 

Up to twenty-five (25) points can be earned each semester and “cashed-in” for one (1) incentive like swag.

How will I be guided during my time in the program?

You will be led by peer coaches. Peer coaches are upperclassmen students who have been trained through the Center for Excellence in Peer Education’s (CEPE) TEDU 205 course prior to joining the program. Peer coaches serve students in a ratio of approximately 5:1, facilitate meetings and help to guide you during your time in the program.

What will I learn during my time in Launchpad?

Launchpad’s two-year program sequence consists of monthly guest speakers and workshops ranging from financial literacy, the benefits of civic engagement and preparation for the workforce through discussions on leadership and diversity. Students will be encouraged to round out their Launchpad experience with post-graduate preparation and experiential learning by way of graduate school prep and completion of an internship, on/off-campus job or study abroad experience.

Specific student learning outcomes for Launchpad

  • a vision for College of Charleston and beyond
  • financial literacy knowledge/tools    
  • a sense of belonging through small groups
  • a clear academic path
  • understanding the link between social/civic responsibility and careers
  • awareness of DEIB’s role in the workplace
  • tools for experiential learning
  • knowledge of effective networking techniques
  • improved leadership IQ or acumen

How can I get involved in Launchpad if I am not a freshman or sophomore?

If you are a junior or senior, serving as a peer coach is a wonderful way to engage with Launchpad.
The Office of Institutional Diversity is currently accepting applications for the Peer Coach role.

To apply, you should meet the following minimum qualifications:

  • rising junior or senior status
  • launchpad Peer Coach Application + completed recommendation form
  • ability to commit to 5 hours a week each semester, with some evenings required
  • completion of TEDU 205 (if hired)
  • completion of the Career Center’s new employee student orientation (first-time campus hires only)
  • prior peer leadership experience a plus

*Serious candidates will be required to interview for the position.

*This is a paid position at $10/hr.

Why does Launchpad exist?

Launchpad was created in the summer of 2020 by the Office of Institutional Diversity (in partnership with the Center for Excellence in Peer Education, the Office of Multicultural Student Programs & Services and the Career Center).

The goals of the program are to address internal and external shifts affecting higher education and the workforce of tomorrow by:

  • Responding to Pillar 1 of the College’s new strategic plan which focuses on student experience and success
  • Responding to rapidly changing workforce needs brought on by the COVID-19 pandemic
  • Serving as a driver for economic development and empowerment of AALANA students looking to make a return on their educational investment