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Pardon the Alumni – A Behind the Scenes Look at an Employer Engagement Collaboration Model

Pardon the Alumni – A Behind the Scenes Look at an Employer Engagement Collaboration Model

EACE Blog contribution by Angelique Torres Kim, Associate Director of Employer Relations, Salem State University

In my previous life as the Employer Outreach Specialist at Endicott College, I collaborated with different departments to engage employers with the campus through a creative program.  This is that story.

It was July 2013 and a beautiful summer in the North Shore of Massachusetts.  Another successful year of employer engagement and outreach was at an end, and I was starting the evaluation period to review the results.  As I wrapped up my annual departmental meetings, I identified companies to build relationships with for the following academic year for the School of Sports Science and Fitness Studies.  Per usual, I scoured LinkedIn to see what connections existed within these companies, and with the help of the Alumni Relations Office, I was able to locate a number of alumni from the School of Communication who worked in sports-related industries.  An idea for a creative employer engagement event was born.

Endicott College School of Communication Alumni

Endicott College School of Communication Alumni

Pardon the Alumni: A School of Communication Alumni Event took place on Friday, November 8th, 2013.  The event featured a panel of alumni that worked in sports-related industries.  The alums represented companies such as Converse, IMG College, Reebok, and Timberland. The panelists provided career advice, internship, full-time opportunities, and answered the questions of about 40 students.  After the panel discussion, a number of students stayed behind to chat with the alumni on a 1:1 level.  It seemed the students did not want the event to end.

According to Dean Laurel Hellerstein of the Endicott College School of Communication, “The “Pardon the Alumni” event was a well-received opportunity for our Seniors to hear about life after graduation from more seasoned Endicott alumni.  The structured, yet relaxed format of this event provided a forum for alumni to speak personally about their professional challenges, and praise how their Endicott College education gave them the foundation to be successful in their careers.  I was incredibly proud of our alumni and was fulfilled knowing that the faculty in the School of Communication were responsible for helping these young people achieve early career success.  It was valuable for our current Senior class to hear about the affirming nature of the time they were spending in their Communication classes at Endicott College.”

Employer Engagement Collaboration Model

Employer Engagement Collaboration Model

Before planning the event, I identified the groups on campus in which I needed to collaborate with.  These departments included the School of Communication, Alumni Relations, and Career Services.  When working with each of the departments, it was important to have a conversation for me to understand the desired outcomes for each of the departments.

As a result of these conversations, the alumni were treated to a lunch prior to the event so that the Alumni Relations Office could have the opportunity to build relationships with the alumni and share information about its services.  The event turned out to be facilitated by the students, with students creating and asking questions themselves that were relevant to Communication.  The title of the event was created by the faculty of the School of Communication.  Students were also required to attend, which helped serve the Career Center’s goal of increasing student attendance for employer events.

The success of this program could not have been achieved without the collaborative efforts of a variety of different departments at the college.  In the end, connections were made that impact the career outcomes of students.  And in Employer Relations, we are in the business of making connections.

Angelique Torres Kim was a Recruiter in the University Relations space in the private sector.  She is now the Associate Director of Employer Relations with Salem State University.  Prior to joining the Salem State Team, Angelique was the Employer Outreach Specialist at Endicott College within the Career Center where she built the foundation for the Employer Outreach Initiative.  She has served on the Board of the Career Counselors Consortium, Northeast and currently serves on the Road Trips to the Real World and Professional Exchange Visits Committees through the Eastern Association of Colleges and Employers (EACE).  She presented during the EACE Annual Conference in May 2013.  Angelique holds her MA in Organizational and Corporate Communication from Emerson College.

Angelique is a connector and has a passion for helping others by making connections that fulfills the needs of both students and employers.

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