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Making the transition from classroom to careers.

Adam Rice, manager of the Menís Wearhouse, shows how the right clothes can help make a good first impression during a program sponsored by the Career Development Center. Juan Rosario, EOP counselor, serves as Riceís model.
Work at the University’s Career Development Center (CDC) often revolves around making students feel at ease in uncertain situations. On any given day, that could range from counseling a first-year student on choosing a major to helping a senior gain the polish needed to shine at a job interview. “Potentially, we can serve any student who’s here,” said William McCarthy, CDC associate director, “and we will get anyone from a freshman through doctoral student to an alum who calls us and says ‘I just lost my job.’”

The center offers a number of programs throughout the year to help students explore career options, often inviting alumni back to campus to share their perspectives, said Nancy Paul, the center’s director. On Monday, March 7, a group of alumni will talk about taking time out from college after graduation to pursue service work, and on Wednesday, April 6, another panel of alumni will discuss career opportunities at community colleges. The partnerships formed with alumni, faculty and staff help enhance the programs the center is able to offer.

During 2003-04, the CDC had contact with about 12,000 students, 5,500 students attended 116 programs held throughout the year and the center worked with about 500 employer recruiters, said Paul.

One of the most frequent requests the center staff receives is for resume reviews, but that often raises other issues, Paul noted, and the discussion leads to the next step in the process — searching for a job.

For some students, Paul said, the focus has been on succeeding in the classroom, not on life after graduation. “What we see now, especially with seniors, is it’s like they are about to jump off a cliff,” she said.

A number of different tools are used to help students look at their options, ranging from large events to smaller, more targeted programs. The recent Internship and Job Fair gave students a chance to meet with representatives from 55 companies; more than 1,700 students took advantage of the opportunity. “The big events really bring the students and employers face to face,” Paul said.

Other events are geared toward getting the most out of a job search. In just the first two months of this semester, the CDC offered programs on creating dynamic resumes and cover letters, dressing for success, making the most of a job fair, successful interviewing techniques, finding summer internships and job search techniques.
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Last Updated: 10/14/08