It’s a tough year to find a job, and students are well aware of the bad news. NC State’s University Career Center (UCC) is working hard to let students know that while finding a job is a challenge, we are there to help them develop effective job search skills as well as confidence in themselves as job applicants. We also seek out job/internship opportunities in some new and creative ways through our employer development efforts.
Our seven counselors reach over 4,000 students a year through group presentations to classes and student organizations on essential topics such as resume writing, job search strategies, and interviewing skills, and our career ambassadors add to those numbers through their presentations in residence halls. Counselors continuously meet with students through appointments and walk-in sessions (over 2,200 this year.) We emphasize the value of planning early, preparing for the job search, and actively participating in the many activities available to them, from resume blitzes prior to campus career fairs, to mock interviews with counselors and employers, to applying for jobs in our ePACK system (3,000 +), to interviewing directly with employers through the UCC (300 employers, 3,500 interviews annually.)
The experience of making direct contact with potential employers in an actual work setting is particularly valuable to students, but it is a process that seems forbidding to most. To give our first year Engineering students a taste of the real world of engineering, help them confirm a career decision, enhance their confidence in speaking with professionals, and encourage connections for possible future internships, the UCC established a one-day job shadowing program that took place during spring semester break. Twenty-nine first year Engineering students were matched with nineteen North Carolina companies. Student enthusiasm for the program was echoed by their employer hosts, who enjoyed interacting with well-prepared student engineers and are eager to participate in future externship (job shadowing) programs. Expanding the program beyond Engineering is a future goal.
The UCC also seeks additional ways to develop employer relationships and to assist in the recruitment of industry to North Carolina. We work directly with employers referred to us by our Industrial Extension Service agents to fulfill their need for engineering talent, thus strengthening the NC State connection. We assist NC State’s Office for Extension & Engagement with its economic development efforts, providing information on the final destinations of new graduates to employers evaluating North Carolina as a potential company site. We have also begun a collaboration with Duke and UNC-CH to identify and develop relationships with companies that do not recruit currently at our three schools.
For further information, please contact:
Director, University Career Center
NC State University