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Center for Career Design featured at Penn College board meeting

Focusing on career preparation and career readiness for students at the Pennsylvania College of Technology, the Center for Career Design offers services to students, alumni and industry partners.

“Just to give a little snapshot of the services that we offer to students, alumni and industry partners, if you can think about this from the cycle, our students become alumni, they then go to work for industry and they come back and recruit our students,” said Loni Kline, vice president for college relations in her presentation before the college’s Board of Trustees recently.

“It really is a blending connection between all these great audiences and how we’re interacting with them,” she added.

Some of the services offered to students include meeting with them for resume reviews, conducting mock interviews and teaching them how to do salary negotiations. The college also offers students interactions with potential employers, such as the Career Fair which was held recently. All services are also available to Penn College alumni.

“But, to be quite frank, many of them (alumni) are coming back to recruit our students. They appreciate the experience that they have here and they want to continue that on and bring Penn College graduates into their workforce,” Kline said. She noted that a number of graduates did come back to campus for the career fair.

“I can summarize quite simply with industry by saying they want to get in front of our students and hire them,” she added.

At the center, students have access to a business station where they can print resumes and also have business cards printed. Kline noted that last week students had ordered almost 600 business card to get ready for the career fair.

She said that prior to the fair, the career services team at the center had conducted prep sessions for the event with all first year experience students.

Other services available to students at the center include an area where they can take a photo for a Linkedin profile as well as establish or update their profile for the website and the Career Clothes Closet.

“It’s a wonderful offering for students,” Kline said.

“They can come in if they are experiencing a presentation or an interview or career fair. They can come in and get gently-used clothing to take with them and to keep,” she said. Kline noted that about 200 student use the closet each year.

“It was hopping last week, as you can imagine,” she said.

In her report to the board, Dr. Davie Jane Gilmour, college president, said that there were 237 companies on campus for Career Day, which was held at both the Barto Gymnasium and the Field House.

“They were both full. This is a sold out event,” she said, adding that there had been a waiting list.

She said that 1,458 students attended the event, with 802 of those going to both sites.

“Nearly half of all the companies that came had alumni of Penn College with them, which is increasing every year. It certainly speaks volumes to our alumni, but also speaks to our corporate relations.

Gilmour said that 17 companies stayed for the following day to interview students. Over 163 students were interviewed.

“We had a great many companies who were thrilled that we were here in person this year. We did virtual last year and then we did pop-up recruiting,” Gilmour said.

She also noted that the Career Closet had been heavily used before the career fair, especially with students looking for belts and button-down shirts.

“The fact of the matter is that we have a large number of male students at this institution,” she explained. She said that she was told that the closet was completely out of belts and shirts for men in the small and medium category.

“So if you know anybody who’s interested in contributing to that closet, those are the emergency needs we have right now,” she added.

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