Welcome to IPC Pathways
A career exploration program at
Immanuel Presbyterian Church, McLean, VA
What is IPC Pathways?
IPC Pathways is a career exploration program at Immanuel Presbyterian Church, McLean, VA. It is designed to benefit youth and young adults – whom we call seekers — who have a connection to Immanuel, whether or not they are members.
The program has been operated since fall 2017 at Immanuel by The Harraseeket Foundation. Harraseeket is a 501(c)(3) public charity whose mission is to support career exploration programs for communities like Immanuel. The program is operated in consultation with Immanuel’s Spirituality & Learning Committee, Youth Ministry Committee, Immanuel staff and an Immanuel advisory board that includes several seekers.
Learn more about the program at About IPC Pathways.
We want everyone at Immanuel to participate in career mentoring conversations. We also need volunteers and donations!
Some of the mentors in the Immanuel Presbyterian Church Pathways program are sharing the stories of their career paths. Here is one mentor’s story of how she became a small business owner and what landscape design means to her.
Feedback from Seekers and Mentors
I loved having the opportunity to meet with [my seeker]. She was so open, warm, and eager to learn about how I had navigated my career path and about some of the choices I made along the way. While it became clear fairly early in our discussion that our career paths were not likely to be very similar, I felt that we connected and both benefitted from considering questions we posed to one another, including, for example, what we see as our greatest personal skills and gifts that we would hope to utilize in the workplace. [The seeker] commented to me that she felt that was a good question that she had never really fully considered in that way. After [the seeker] thoughtfully responded to this question, I’d like to think that she had a bit more clarify and direction that could prove helpful as she considers various job opportunities and her career path. In the end, I walked away with much to think about myself and, if the truth be told, I likely benefitted from the meeting as much, if not more, than [the seeker], who is a truly remarkable person.
My experience with Pathways has been much more than traditional mentoring — I call it conversing and sharing. We don’t know where it goes but the journey is rewarding so far. It affirms my long-held view of Immanuel as a family.
My first conversation with my mentor was incredibly organic, supportive, and fun. I learned a valuable perspective from her, that career paths aren’t always linear and are often enriched by your openness to opportunities. I intend to carry this with me on my career journey, and have greatly enjoyed our newly fostered relationship and correspondence.
In tracing back over my career path with my seeker, interesting threads of connection emerged within the different jobs that I've had over the years that I don't think I saw at the time as I transitioned from one job to the next. That clarity cued up some perspective in my seeker that, despite confusion and overwhelm in contemplating career paths, if they allowed inner guidance to prevail in steering them towards first jobs, seeds of growth would be sown that could be cultivated from one job to the next, each position with potential to amplify their innate talents and gifts. I saw that I had stayed true to my deep interests and passions and that I was able to flourish in positions that at first glance didn't seem to be the perfect fit.
I had such a dynamic exchange with the seeker I met with. Their energy and commitment really inspired me.