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Career Development Specialist Facilitated Employer Site Visits

EACE Blog contribution by Scott Borden , Rutgers University Career Services


With summer on the horizon, thoughts turn to warmer weather, vacations and … employer site visits!  Programs like EACE’s professional exchange allow for University Career Development professionals to visit employers to view operations, learn more about target companies, meet career development colleagues, share university/employer best practices and engage and network professionally.  These programs provide a wonderful forum to enhance professional knowledge, build relationships and continue your career centers, and your, growth in a world of work environment that calls for continuous evolution, innovation and measurable results.

While not a new concept, Rutgers University Career Services has added a new twist to engaging in our own site visit program – targeted, career cluster driven, University Career Center supported employer site visits during the course of the academic year. The idea is to incorporate not only the Employer Relations team, but the student-facing, cluster-aligned, career development and advising staff as well.  The thought behind this collaborative approach is to have our Career Development Specialists, our industry cluster-based, subject matter experts and staff professionals with the most direct, industry-related, student advising experience participate in the employer engagement and visit and interact with related cluster-based employers and recruiting teams. This collaborative approach brings career center student advisers into contact with recruiters to allow for a professional sharing of information on student practices and behaviors and observations on student’s areas of interest and career needs, desires and goals. In turn, employer recruiting staff members share their recruiting observations, trends, best practices and can directly address needs related to both campus-related issues and university career services.  This collaborative practice gives the career center advising staff an additional opportunity to connect employers with special student groups, campus organizations and faculty and academic department initiatives for a more customer service friendly, inclusive, comprehensive and fully immersive UCS experience – a win-win for UCS, Employers, Faculty and students.

Students, of course, benefit from their access and exposure to the employers getting an opportunity to observe the workplace, ask questions, learn about companies and industries, connect with Rutgers’ alumni employed a given company, professionals in their respective fields of interest and make valuable connections.

Some employer program offerings have included:

  • A Rutgers’ Alumni panel of employees for a Q&A
  • Lunch meet and greets and networking
  • HR-led company presentations and tours
  • Brief, “day-in-the-life” simulated experiences

Rutgers University Career Services has conducted a few select collaborative site visits during this past spring semester to “road test” the program, gain feedback and work on any questions or concerns before fully rolling it out this coming fall.  So far, the visits have been positive and each has attracted a significant number of students. Combining University Career Services’ Career Advising professionals along with the Employer Relations’ team and internship coordinators has shown immediate benefit in creating a more enriching experience for the employer, has allowed for UCS staff to complement each other’s work more effectively, and allowed employers to expand their points of engagement and opportunities to work together. Some of the value that the career advising staff has added includes the following:

  • Observations on the pulse of students in a given career cluster
  • Access to a targeted pool of students
  • Assistance with navigating a large State University with multiple departments and contacts
  • Access to targeted faculty within academic departments
  • Information on various academic department initiatives, conferences, on-campus programs
  • Exposure to unique student clubs and organizations
  • Information on unique opportunities to engage based on student adviser-generated programming with various, diverse student/alumni populations.

A full slate of employer visits will be conducted in the fall 2015 semester to cover each of our five defined, industry clusters – Business & Communication, Arts & Entertainment, Education & Public/Human Services, Food/Agriculture/Environmental & Natural Resources and Health/General Sciences, Technology, Engineering & Math. It promises to be a great semester!

borden-scottScott Borden is a New Jersey licensed professional counselor, national certified counselor, national certified career counselor, and distance credentialed counselor. As a Career Development Specialist with University Career Services, he provides career counseling, life-planning, and related programming to undergraduate and graduate students interested in pursuing careers within the following areas: business, communication and English. While working with all undergraduate and graduate students, Scott also serves as a liaison to students on academic probation/at risk for retention and transfer students new to Rutgers.

Prior to his experience at Rutgers and in private practice, Scott was an operations manager for Lehman Brothers in NYC for six years, where he managed the OTC Equities group and provided team-building and communications seminars to staff.

Scott holds a master’s degree in counseling psychology from the College of New Jersey, a bachelor’s degree in finance and management from Monmouth University, and is a member of the NJ Counseling Association, NJ Career Development Association, Middle Atlantic Career Counselors Association, and Chi Sigma Iota.

Sue Pye

Sue Pye

As the Assistant Director for Experiential Education my goal is to help students gain meaningful experience through internships or other related opportunities to enhance their academic and career pursuits. I also serve as an Instructor for the Rutgers Internship and Co-op courses. I enjoy helping students identify and achieve their career goals.

I completed my bachelor’s degree at Rutgers with majors in anthropology and communication. I obtained my master’s degree in higher education at NYU. Prior to Rutgers, I worked at Seton Hall University, The Fashion Institute of Technology (FIT), William Paterson University, College of Saint Elizabeth, and Kean University.

As an undergraduate alumna of Rutgers, I value the Rutgers experience and understand the complexities of such an impressive and large institution. My advice to students is to hit the ground running and get involved. Start gaining experience and skills by joining a student organization, obtaining an internship, volunteering, obtaining a research experience, or studying abroad.

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