Joel Bolton '09
“When you graduate from Randolph-Macon College, you may leave the campus physically
to take on new endeavors, but the R-MC connection never falters,” says Joel
Bolton ’09. Bolton, who majored in psychology,
experienced that connection firsthand when he studied abroad in South Africa during
January Term (J-term) 2009.
“We traveled to Johannesburg and Cape Town with Psychology Professor Kristen Klaaren
and Associate Professor of Anthropology Scott London, who taught Prejudice, Privilege,
and Social Transformations in South Africa,” recalls Bolton, who blogged while he
was traveling. “We visited the University of the Witwatersrand campus, met South
African students and attended lectures given by scholars and activists. We drew
connections between African culture, history and social psychology during Apartheid
in South Africa during Nelson Mandela’s struggle to power and peace. Being with
classmates and professors with whom I could share ideas, and traveling to a country
that fostered creative reflection, helped shape my views on many things.”
The close connections and real-world skills that Bolton forged at R-MC helped him
learn to think critically about the “big picture” in many situations. He currently
serves as the operations manager for Global Security Associates, a private security
firm at Washington’s Dulles International Airport. Bolton coordinates and manages
private aviation security operations for several international air Carriers at Dulles,
and facilitates Special Operations Security events at various venues in D.C. and
beyond for traveling VIPs and other clientele.
“At R-MC, I learned to communicate effectively and professionally, and I learned
how to make well-informed decisions,” says Bolton, who earned his Masters of Transportation
Policy, Operations & Logistics, from George Mason University School of Public
Policy. “They are skills that I use daily—both in my personal and my professional
Advice for Yellow Jackets
Bolton, who served as the senior speaker for R-MC’s 2009 Commencement ceremony,
speaks from the heart when offers the newest Yellow Jackets advice on making the
most of their four years at Randolph-Macon.
“Embrace the value of connections between students and professors,” he says. “Those
connections make you better prepared to use the skills you’ll learn from your liberal
arts education and apply them to real-world situations.”
Paving the Way for Success
Rather than prepare students for one career, Randolph-Macon College prepares students
for a lifetime of careers in an ever-changing world. Exceptional faculty work with
students to cultivate their ability to think critically and analytically and to
find creative solutions for solving problems. R-MC graduates are well-prepared for
successful careers, often far outside of their areas of study.
The Randolph-Macon EDGE and Alumni Network
The Randolph-Macon EDGE,
the cornerstone of the Center for Personal and Career
Development, helps Randolph-Macon students lead the pack when competing
for jobs and top graduate schools. Students have the support of faculty, career
coaches, alumni and staff as they focus on their personal
and academic ambitions.
Students may choose to pursue paid or volunteer
internships in a wide variety of settings. The
Bassett Internship Program has been successfully placing students in
academic internships both in the U.S. and around the globe for 30 years. Coordinated
with the Center for Personal and Career Development, the program helps students
identify their interests and matches them with an appropriate internship opportunity.
Randolph-Macon’s alumni provide a strong network of support for students throughout
their time at the college or in assisting them after graduation with career direction
The Four-Year Degree Guarantee
The college’s Four-Year Degree
Guarantee states in writing that freshmen who meet the Four-Year Degree
Guarantee requirements will graduate within four calendar years. If not, Randolph-Macon
will waive tuition costs for courses needed to complete the degree. Currently, 95
percent of R-MC graduates complete their degree in four years or less—an important
value-added benefit for parents to consider when visiting colleges with their students.
Study Abroad programs offer students
a beyond-the-classroom global perspective and opportunities to immerse themselves
in other cultures. Students can choose from a host of travel courses during January
Term and semester-abroad programs.
The Schapiro Undergraduate Research Fellowship (SURF)
program gives students the opportunity to conduct 10 weeks of original research
under the guidance of faculty mentors. Many students present their findings at national
and international conferences.
Read more Alumni Success stories.