Alumni Spotlight

Marci Alboher '91: One Alumna/Multiple Careers

by, Brad Dwin

Marci Alboher ’91 thought that attending law school seemed like the “safe” choice at the time.

“I was gung-ho at WCL. I loved my law school experience. I was really immersed in legal methods and legal research and it was all fascinating to me. But once I became an attorney, I never felt that it was my destiny to practice law. It just never felt right. Law never seemed to be connected to any of my passions. There was a clear separation between who I was at work and who I was as a person,” Alboher explains.

Alboher’s passion has always revolved around writing. After 10 years as an attorney practicing advertising law, she parlayed her strong writing and speaking skills into a full-time career as a successful journalist/author/speaker.

The “slashes” in her occupational title are important to her identity and “slash” is the concept she explains in her 2007 book, One Person/Multiple Careers: A New Model for Work/Life Success.

“Basically, a ‘slash’ is a person with multiple career identities at some point in their work life. If someone asks you ‘What do you do?’ and you can’t answer with a single response, then you are probably a slash. The key to slashing though is that it shouldn’t feel like work. Slashing is something you are proud of, as opposed to ‘moonlighting,’ which is just work for monetary gain,” she asserts.

Alboher’s book has been discussed on The Today Show and her insights have been featured in The Wall Street Journal, BusinessWeek, USA Today and several other national publications as well as on a multitude of television and radio programs. Alboher has become one of the media’s go-to people on issues related to career change.

The success of her book is just the tip of the iceberg, as Alboher, the consummate slash, is a regular contributor to the Shifting Careers section of The New York Times and a frequent speaker on career trends and workplace issues to a wide range of audiences at venues around the country. She also teaches regularly at the New York Writers Workshop, where she sits on the executive committee, and offers one-on-one coaching as well.

Alboher believes that the concept of slash is getting a serious look in the current economy. She explains that people slash by necessity and the more people think about their hidden talents, the more opportunities they are able to create.

“It isn’t natural for people to be pigeonholed into one profession for their entire lives. Just as it is important to have a diversified financial portfolio in lean times, it is equally as crucial to possess diversified job skills,” Alboher notes.