What if I’m Not Sure About an Offer?

The Career Center team knows how challenging it can be to decide between multiple job or internship offers and we get that sometimes you have a case of FOMO (fear of missing out), which motivates you to continue searching for opportunities when you have already said yes to someone else. We also know that making good decisions is an important part of life, and keeping your word on commitments is also very important. We recognize that receiving a job/internship offer is an exciting, and sometimes complex, situation. We ask students and employers to follow best practices in order to foster a positive recruiting experience for all.

For Duke students this means never accepting a job offer with the intention of turning it down if something better comes along. This practice is known as reneging. Not only is it inconsiderate and unprofessional, it also reflects poorly on Duke and could negatively impact other students’ opportunities with that company. Once you accept an offer, you have committed to joining that organization and they have stopped recruiting other students. When you renege, you leave the employer without an important member of their team, which often impacts their operations, as it’s too late to find another intern. Also, employers communicate with each other at recruiting events, and you don’t want to tarnish your reputation for future opportunities.

The Career Center, campus partners, and employers rely on your commitments to build upon opportunities that enhance your skills and prepare for future generations. You’re a Duke student, so we know you will always be in high demand because of your skills, competencies and experience, and there are times when you will not want to miss out on what appears to be once in a lifetime opportunities. We want you to pursue your dreams, and we want you to be mindful of building and strengthening meaningful partnerships with people along the way. Your commitment is not only to the organization or group, but shows your respect to the person/people involved in the process, and to Duke University.

Again, we know how challenging these decisions can be, and how scary turning an offer down to pursue something you are more excited about is. If you are weighing your options, then we’re here to help you. Our team and other campus partners are available to coach you on making important decisions that relate to your near- and long-term internship, job opportunities, professional development, and career goals. We also know there can be extenuating circumstances that you are juggling and we want to support you in your outreach to the organization.

Please note that we take seriously your commitment to an offer and reneging on an offer is unacceptable. It is imperative to be aware of the Recruiting Guidelines and Expectations for students that we have in place and contact us, careerstudent@duke.edu, if you have any questions. If you wish to schedule a conversation with a career advisor, do that via Handshake, or to access available resources by using the search function here in Duke Career Hub.

When considering offers take the time you need to think about your options, be transparent and communicate with the appropriate individuals about your process and other opportunities you may be considering, and make wise decisions that you can commit to. Once you commit to an offer, discontinue your search and interview process with other employers. We want you to be successful and we’re here to assist you.

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By Monique K. Turrentine Holmes
Monique K. Turrentine Holmes Associate Director, Employer Relations