Dinorah Meyer

Dinorah MeyerAssistant Director / Career Counselor
College of Environmental Design


M.S., Counseling, San Francisco State University
B.A., French, Minor in Dance, Tufts University

How did you get here?
I took a circuitous path to becoming a career counselor. After earning my B.A., I explored various “ologies” – psychology, sociology, dance ethnology, linguistic anthropology – as well as fitness, publishing, construction management, human resources, and documentary filmmaking. In the meantime, I performed with a West African drumming and dance group in the Boston area.

As I tried out different jobs and considered possible directions, I developed a set of criteria for what I wanted in my career. While working (unhappily) in an HR and accounting role at a startup tech company, I met with a career counselor and realized that her type of work might suit me. Soon after, I moved back to San Francisco and went to grad school.

I have mostly cultivated a "portfolio career"; currently this consists of counseling students and alumni at the Career Center half-time, and other days, seeing spouses and partners of Cal's visiting scholars and postdocs and members of the public in private practice. I also teach yoga and sometimes integrate yoga practices into career counseling. If you meet with me, I may ask you if you would like to take a few minutes just to breathe.

Whom do you work with? What's cool about your job?
I work with students and alumni in the College of Environmental Design, and am also the liaison to the Student Parent and African American Student Development centers. I enjoy hearing each person's unique story, learning about their hopes and aspirations, and helping them manage uncertainty, see and express their strengths, and gain perspective about their career development.

What's the best career advice anyone has given you?

  • Being happy is more important than being “important.”
  • Follow your curiosity – if something piques your interest, look into it – you never know where it might lead you.

Yoga (physical discipline and philosophy; I have my 200-hour yoga teaching certificate), dance, photography, other visual and performing arts, languages (besides French, I've studied Spanish, and Swahili, and learned a bit of Dagbani); spending time with family, our two cats, and close friends; helping working parents manage competing priorities.

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