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Past Presidents Flashback: 2000 – 2002

Our second post of our past president series is from the year 2000…

linda_KentDr. Linda Kent Davis: 2000 – 2001
University of Massachusetts Dartmouth

  1. Where was your first EACE conference?
    It was the ECPO Spring 1989 Conference at Roger Williams College (now University!) many years prior to the merger of the Northeast and Atlantic regions and the birth of EACE. I was hooked! A year later I was the hospitality co-chair at the Spring Conference at Mt. Holyoke and continued to be actively involved through my presidency and beyond.
  2. What is your proudest EACE moment?
    I am proudest of EACE volunteers! During the first few years of EACE, much of the Board’s attention was focused on how to blend two very similar yet simultaneously very dissimilar associations structurally as well as culturally. By the time I became president much of that work was solidified and I was in the fortunate position to choose what I wanted for the focus of my presidential year. I chose volunteers … expanding the pool of volunteers, encouraging newer professionals to take the plunge and engage, and formalizing support for them. It is fun to see how many of those then newer professionals embraced leadership roles within EACE and the profession and to see how they in turn catalyzed new generations of volunteers.
EACE conference pic_amy

The picture was from the June 2002 Annual Conference in Norfolk VA on the boat cruise.  Pictured are Sam Ratcliffe (President-Elect),  me (President), and Donna Cassell Ratcliffe (who later became EACE President).

Amy Feifer: 2001-2002
Haverford College

  1. Where was your first EACE conference?
    Hershey Hotel, Hershey, PA in September 1984 – Middle Atlantic Placement Association (precursor to EACE). My first EACE conference was in September, 1997 at the EACE “Kick-Off” Conference at the Renaissance Westchester Hotel in White Plains, NY.
  2. What is your proudest EACE moment?
    The first face-to-face Board meeting I hosted as President of EACE was at Haverford College on September 11 and 12, 2001. At the beginning of the meeting on 9/11, my assistant called the meeting room to tell me something happened in NY, and we then proceeded to continue with the meeting. Shortly after that, she called again to let us know about the second attack. Needless to say we stopped the Board meeting. These devastating events occurred within the EACE region, board members had family who lived near the Twin Towers, and we all needed to grapple with the events personally. I am proud how the Board pulled together to support each other that day and, later, how we supported members and member organizations who were directly affected by the tragedies. Despite not having a September meeting, the EACE leadership team ended up accomplishing impactful and innovative things for EACE in 2001-2002, including a short-term restructuring of administrative services and restructuring the Board to include Technology Director.

See you back here next Friday when we hear from 2 more presidents! You’ve all signed up for the conference right?! Make sure you book your hotel before the May 26th when our discounted room rate expires.

When Technology Fails

By Rachel E. Wobrak, University of Maryland

We’re very lucky these days that we have all kinds of technology to help us do our jobs better and more efficiently. Some of us are more apt to jump in and try new technology while others are a little unsure of new resources and how to use them. I think we can all agree we love technology, when it works, but when it doesn’t, that’s another story. What is supposed to make our lives easier can sometimes make them more stressful or more difficult.

Recently I found myself in a few of these situations. My graduate assistant and I have wanted to better utilize the technology we have available to us when organizing panels. She found someone who could participate virtually on the panel in addition to our in person panelists. It was great until we could see the panelist, but we couldn’t hear her and she couldn’t hear us. Eventually we just had to start the panel and my grad continued to trouble shoot until we finally decided to simply call her on the phone and put her on speaker. Other presentations/panels recently we’ve run into similar technology issues, once we forgot to select which audio to use so we had video and no audio and the next time we were diligent to make sure we figured out the audio, but the video wouldn’t work. You’d think this would be a little easier sometimes. I’ve been co-chair of the Technology committee for two years now and I still have trouble. I am not immune to these problems and I like to think I’m fairly comfortable with technology.

I say all this because when we reach these road blocks, it can be easy to say why bother and not attempt to use the technology the next time because you think it will let you down. I’m willing to admit that I’ve been frustrated in the moment and have thought about giving up and not bothering the next time. So, instead, I decided to make this the focus of my blog piece in an effort to encourage others to fight through that frustration. That’s my plan; I will be back at it with my fall programming to try to get it right, because I know it will be an invaluable tool for our students that can’t make it to the presentation/panel.

To make it easier, I have some tips for powering through frustration to get the technology to do what you want it to and to help us all do our jobs better.

  1. Form a Committee: It’s easy to give up when it feels like it’s just you vs the technology, but if it’s you and a colleague or you and a small group of people that want to learn how best to use the technology, you’re sure to motivate each other to learn how to best use the resources you have. More minds are better than one anyway, right?
  2. Google Common Problems: I know it sounds simplistic but this can sometimes be a really successful approach, especially if it’s something a number of people using the same tool have struggled with.
  3. Reach out to others: If you’re still stuck, try your IT department or manager, talk to other colleagues, or even reach out to EACE friends/colleagues to see who has experience with this same tool.
  4. Hold Training Sessions: Once the technology has been mastered (or at least it’s better understood), share the knowledge! Teach others how to use it so they feel more comfortable with the tool(s).
  5. Try, try again: Don’t let one set back keep you from figuring it out!

 

Rachel Wobrak is a Program Director at the University Career Center & The President’s Promise at the University of Maryland. She works with the College of Computer, Mathematical & Natural Sciences developing programming/events, meeting with students and collaborating with faculty, staff and employers. She assists with the office’s social media presence by managing the Center’s Pinterest account. She’s a Co-Chair of the EACE Technology Committee and soon to be on the Board as the Director of College Member Services. Rachel has her MEd from the University of Florida in Student Personnel in Higher Education and her BA from the University of Maryland in Classics (proof you can find a great career with any major). Please feel free to connect with her on Twitter or LinkedIn.

 

Past Presidents Flash Back

This year’s conference is a BIG DEAL – and not just because we get to see some of the most powerful waterfalls in North America – but because we will be celebrating 20 YEARS as an organization! That is something powerful. Almost as powerful as the flow of the falls (which is the highest of any waterfall in the world!). So to mark this anniversary we are going to take a plunge (see what I did there?) into the past and check in with some of the presidents of the organization. Starting each Friday, from now until the conference, we’ll be highlighting the fearless leaders that first dared to dream of merging two organizations into one powerful cascade of professional development.

We asked each past president just two simple questions:

  1. Where was your first EACE conference?
  2. What is your proudest EACE moment?

Let’s start at the very beginning, shall we?

marvaMarva Gumbs Jennings: 1997 – 1998
The George Washington University Center for Career Services

  1. Where was your first EACE conference?
    Can’t remember! (We will forgive you Marva – I can hardly remember yesterday let alone where I was in 1997!)
  2. What is your proudest EACE moment?
    I am proud of being the first President of the newly merged EACE organization (merger of ECEN and MAACE). This involved the merger of two distinct operational cultures and successfully leading the Board, committees and the membership through the first year of transition.

Manny Photo copyManny Contomanolis, PhD: 1999 – 2000
RIT Office of Career Services and Cooperative Education

  1. Where was your first EACE conference?
    First “EACE” meeting was a MAPA ISTP conference at Franklin & Marshall College in 1981 or 1982.
  2. What is your proudest EACE moment?
    My proudest moment came as EACE President when I handed out the various awards for service to the association. To me, that was representing the association and the profession in the most essential and important way – by recognizing the volunteer leaders who make us all successful!

Tune in next Friday when we hear from 2 more of previous presidents of EACE!

Membership Spotlight – “We are EACE” – Meet Mallory O’Neil, Vector Marketing

EACE has been asking new members to share some fun facts about themselves. Here we get to know Mallory O’Neil.

Employer
Vector Marketing

What do you do in your current position?
Campus Recruiting Manager, Vector East

Where are you originally from?
Marlton, NJ

Where do you live now?
Voorhees, NJ

Outside of work, what are some of your favorite things to do?
I love dancing, running, singing, reading biographies and nerding out on World War II and American history. I also spend a lot of time volunteering with the Special Olympics track and bowling teams.

Why do you do what you do?
I’m a huge believer in the opportunities that Vector offers students. We’re not just a direct sales company. We’re teaching students skills for life. Within a few short months with our company they can gain experience and confidence in public speaking, sales, customer service, networking and most impressively, running their own business. The change I see in each student that works with us is always astounding. I love working with colleges to share our growth opportunities with all of their students.

What is your educational background?
I graduated with honors from Monmouth University with a bachelor of arts in communication and a minor in history. While at Monmouth I was an active member of my sorority, Zeta Tau Alpha, a coordinator for the student ambassador program and an adviser for first-year students.

What was your first job?
My first job was as a production assistant on Kitchen Nightmares with Gordon Ramsay. (Yes, he is much nicer than he seems on TV!) It was such a cool experience working in reality television. I worked with Kitchen Nightmares for 3 seasons which opened the doors to work on other shows such as Master Chef, Real World and Bad Girls Club.

What is the best advice you ever received?
Never stop learning. I’ve always been a very curious person but I was taught never to trick yourself into thinking you know everything. There are always opportunities to learn and grow. Read, explore and listen as much as you can.

For someone starting in your field, what advice would you give?
Building relationship and networking are the key to any profession but especially recruiting. Be kind and professional and you will have no problem building relationships with your colleagues.

What is something that might surprise us about you?
This probably isn’t surprising to anyone who has spent more than 10 minutes with me because I’m constantly singing or humming but I would love to have my own variety show a la the great, Carol Burnett.

New Member Spotlight – “We Are EACE” – Meet Jill Pajak, Employment Coordinator, Stevenson University

EACE has been asking new members to share some fun facts about themselves. Here we get to know Jill Pajak from Stevenson University.

What do you do in your current position?
I am the Employment Coordinator, so my job is to connect the students with employers to get them hired.

Where are you originally from?
Baltimore, Maryland

Where do you live now?
A tiny town called Hampstead, Maryland

Outside of work, what are some of your favorite things to do?
My favorite thing right now is called “Lunch Around the World” where I invite my family and friends over once per month to celebrate a different country’s cuisine. We all have to make a recipe from scratch to share with the group. So fun and educational!

Why do you do what you do?
My number one value in the workplace is “making a difference.” I feel like I do this every day at Stevenson. My team works really hard to connect our students with the exciting world of work!

What is your educational background?
I have a BA in English from Towson University (Towson, Maryland) and I’ve started taking courses toward an MA in Human Resources Development.

What was your first job?
Counter Girl for a local pizza joint.

What is the best advice you ever received?
Don’t ever ask someone to do something you wouldn’t do yourself.

For someone starting in your field, what advice would you give?
In higher education, you gotta bring passion. None of us are in it for the money. We’re here to make a difference in students’ lives. So listen to the needs of others and try to make connections where they make the most sense.

What is something that might surprise us about you?
I was the Homecoming and Prom Queen of my high school. I’m still so humbled by that. Never saw it coming.

Radio Ga Ga

By Lauren E. Creamer, M.S., Wentworth Institute of Technology

WIRE – “Radio That Doesn’t Suck”

When I startedWIRE Logo at Wentworth Institute of Technology two years ago I never thought I’d be producing a radio show. Actually. I never thought I’d be producing a radio show.

But here I am. Mondays at 1 PM. Riffing with some of my favorite colleagues and talking careers.

Let me back up. Wentworth has this hip, totally accessible, award-winning radio station called WIRE (Wentworth Internet Radio). WIRE only lists a handful of their awards on their website, but every year they rake in the trophies – including, most recently, Best College Radio Station in Boston by Boston A-List. The coolest part about WIRE is they let staff and faculty in on the fun.

Enter my office, CO-OPS + CAREERS.

WITworks Radio

In an effort to get our message/advice/guidance out to the student body in a new and engaging way, our fearless Director signed us up for an hour a week. I can’t recall exactly how I was roped into this, but it’s definitely got something to do with my inability to keep my thoughts to myself.

How do you even manage a radio show?

We started out haphazardly. We’d brainstorm topics at lunch before our show – things that were relevant to whatever was happening that semester/month/week.

Then we started to bring in employers. This was a turning point for us – Google and Raytheon – these are our most-listened shows! (I guess that should have been obvious). Students can tune-in live, but they can also listen on-demand through the WIRE Mixcloud page. The numbers keep climbing and so we keep scheduling. To make it easier for everyone – when an employer requests on-campus interviews, we ask them to be on the show. Since then we’ve added four new employer interviews and no one has yet to turn us down. (And, everyone who has been on has been really excited about doing the show!).

Our summer plans: develop a schedule based on the office cycle of busy and quiet points, and the co-op season. We just completed a show idea brainstorm with the staff and I hope to poll our students, too.

Getting Your Message to the People

If you have access to a radio station on your campus (and the students are willing to let you on air) – definitely consider trying this out. Don’t have a radio station? Try podcasts. Or Facebook Live. (Check out Brandeis and their Hiatt Live videos… Career Cab is my favorite).

Bottom line? Try some out-of-the-box ways of getting your message to your students. They’ll start listening and you might just have some fun, too.

To listen to our show, check out this link and search “WITworks Radio”: https://www.mixcloud.com/WentworthRadio/

Lauren is the Senior Co-op + Career Advisor at Wentworth Institute of Technology in Boston. She works with biomedical and electromechanical engineering, and applied mathematics majors. She has worked in higher education for five years in both career development and residential life. Lauren and three of her colleagues write and produce their career development-focused show, WITworks Radio. This is not what she had in mind regarding “other duties as assigned”, but is still jazzed about it anyway. 

Unpacking Power and Privilege in Pursuit of 21st Century “Super Skills”

By Jacki Banks, Manager, Industry Advising: Creative Industries, Georgetown University

Educators have identified four key skills students need to be successful in the 21st century. Commonly called the 4C’s or “Super Skills,” they include communication, collaboration, critical thinking and creativity. The “21st Century Skills” movement is fascinating, and you can learn more about it in the context of K-12 learning, or, more relevant for those of us in career services, against the backdrop of higher education.

As I was reading and reflecting on the National Education Association’s current guide to 21st century learning I recalled a workshop I attended, grounded in Peggy McIntosh’s research on cultural awareness, multicultural education, and relationship-building. Ms. McIntosh, a feminist and anti-racism activist, is the associate director of the Wellesley Centers for Women and founder of The National SEED Project.

During the workshop, I participated in a challenge by choice activity based on Ms. McIntosh’s essay White privilege: Unpacking the invisible knapsack. In a challenge by choice activity, a series of statements are read and participants are asked to stand or raise their hand when they agree with a given statement. To give you a sense of the workshop, read through the following statements and imagine when you might stand or raise your hand.

At my university, I can schedule meetings back to back, because I can get across campus easily
At my university, if someone says I’m articulate, it is an uncomplicated compliment.
At my university, my accomplishments are not perceived as representing the potential or the successes of my race.
At my university, it is easy to find mentors who share my social identity and understand the particular challenges I face.
At my university, if I am passionate about an issue in class or during a club meeting, I will not be judged “emotional” or “irrational.”
At my university, all documents, websites, and classroom management software are accessible to me, without accommodation.

As I held these four critical competencies in one hand and the ideas of power and privilege in the other, I realized that they cannot be siloed. They just can’t. If you don’t critically assess the lens through which you view the world, how can you effectively communicate or collaborate? In essence, you cannot achieve true mastery of these “Super Skills” without a healthy dose of self-reflection.

True self-awareness is a profound process. It’s not always easy or nice or fun. But, as career educators, isn’t it our obligation to help our students become better colleagues, better managers, and, ultimately, better leaders?  If the answer is “yes,” then we need to focus on developing partnerships with departments on campus that help unpack issues of power and privilege. A Different Dialogue is one such program on Georgetown University’s campus.  We should encourage students to actively engage in these opportunities so that they might become the compassionate leaders and global citizens that the workplace needs them to be.

Jacki Banks, LGSW, advises students in the creative industries at Georgetown University’s Cawley Career Education Center.

Cranky Director’s Corner – Hey, you got your electrodes in my gray matter!

I really need to change up my newsfeed to just pull in stories on kittens and sunsets. It’s not the political stories that I find agitating, it’s the stories on tech. You’d think that people like Elon Musk, Mark Zuckerberg, Ray Kurzweil, and other technology elites would have taken a few minutes out of their busy, social fabric re-weaving, world altering lives to watch Star Trek, Black Mirror, Terminator, The Matrix, or just about every other story involving direct brain-computer interfaces or unfettered AI. Clearly Elon Musk has either never seen The Outer Limits episode “Stream of Consciousness” or failed to get the point.

I do appreciate Mr. Musk’s concerns for the dangers in our headlong dash to develop AI. I am not so sure creating direct computer interfaces in our brains is the best way to respond. Maybe instead of trying to keep up with something WE ALREADY CONTROL we should slow it down. You see, a big part of the problem is the twin illusions of the inevitability of progress and that with more technology we can fix our problems.

Fortunately, none of this has anything to do with us. We’re not tech giants, venture capitalists, or government leaders. (Does the current administration know of any technology besides twitter? Would it turn down the opportunity to tweet directly into our heads? *shudder*) Since we don’t have a collective seat at the table, what’s the fuss? Simple. These undertakings need talented people to make them happen, and there’s a serious shortfall.

We stand astride that long term pipeline. We influence where our students look for work. We can also influence how they think about the work they’ll do. So, we come to a question for us as career development pros, what kind of programming do our offices offer to get students to think hard about the implications of the work they’ll do? How about your institution? Student initiated 1-on-1 sessions might be great, but we know that will hardly scratch the surface of our campus populations. I’m talking about solid, serious engagement with groups and classes, maybe even required curriculum. Ally with student groups, partner with similarly concerned faculty or administrators, research and recommend speakers, launch a conversation series, host panels to debate privacy or poverty or climate change and pair it with a networking event or mini career fair. Do something to raise the level of awareness on your campus and mark your office as one willing to tackle hard issues with your students. Our ethical instruction should not be confined to reneging on job offers and misrepresentations on resumes. Yes, this kind of behavior will make some of us politically unpopular on campus. Maybe there needs to be a reminder that our institutions are predicated on academic freedom and free discourse. Think students don’t care about this? Research on Millenials from Deloitte says otherwise.

Let’s be honest about our work. We’re helping people launch their careers. If we prepare students to write a good resume and run a good job search, but are not equipping them to assess the impact their work will have, are we really fulfilling our obligation to them and to society at large? Have we ethically comported our duties if we do not teach our students to ethically assess who will gain and who may be hurt by the work they do and the organizations they attach themselves to?

Frankly, I’m not terribly thrilled that we’re all in some half-baked social experiment run by Mark Zuckerburg or facing the prospect of AI controlled everything thanks to Uber, Google, and dozens of IoT companies. The same can be said of a lot of other organizations and industries. Just because an employer donates generously to our campus, offers great compensation packages, or sports a cool internal culture, it is not necessarily a good or healthy organization. I’m sure Enron was a great campus recruiter!

But if we as a profession not only enable, but encourage, our students to pursue these kinds of applications of their work blind to the larger implications, we are culpable for the future we’ll inhabit. If we don’t raise questions and consciousness because it’s uncomfortable or bad for our careers, what does that make us?

About the Author:  The cranky director will deliver rants on the economy, technology, social engineering, lack of a really good nearby falafel place, and idiot politicians (broadly defined)  to your computer desktop of preferred mobile device the fourth Friday of every month.

Online Assessment Hub

By Matt Cardin, Director, St. John Fisher College

Since its transition from a task force to an official EACE committee in 2016, the Outcomes and Assessment committee has been hard at work creating programs and resources for the membership.  One of the ideas pioneered by the committee has been the creation of an online Assessment Resource Hub, where EACE members can access tools and resources, as well as, share files pertaining to assessment practices at their career center.  EACE members can find rubrics, evaluation forms, surveys, reports and PowerPoints related to assessment.  You can access the Resource Hub through the EACE website on the Resources tab.  From the Resource tab, select Assessment Resource Hub, you will need to be signed into the site as a member, and then you will be able to enter the hub and view the resources.  Any EACE member can contribute to the collection of online assessment resources by completing this short submission form.  Please submit original items only.  We cannot accept copyrighted materials.  The Resource Hub is strengthened through member participation and all members are encouraged to submit and share resources.

As the demand for assessment continues to grow, the Resource Hub will help you generate ideas and solutions to the challenges that you face on your campus. The Outcomes and
AssessEACE Assessment Screen Shotment Committee is excited to announce the Resource Hub and is confident it will become a valuable benefit of EACE membership.  The vision for the Resource Hub is that it will inspire members and serve as a model that can be adapted by others to share resources and expertise on other topics related to our field.  It is the beginning of a new member tool that will get better overtime with member participation.  As our own assessment practices continue to improve so will the resources and ideas that we share.  Questions about the online Assessment Resource Hub can be directed to Matt Cardin, Director, Career Center at St. John Fisher College at mcardin@sjfc.edu.

cardinMatt Cardin is the Director of the Career Center at St. John Fisher College in Rochester, NY. He has over 15 years of experience in the field.

The Millennial Journey: College internships are hardly optional.

By Gorick Ng

I applied for my first job at the age of 12 to support my family. I applied to housekeeping jobs, burger flipping jobs, grocery bagging jobs, and clerical jobs – and tried (poorly, in retrospect) to obfuscate my age and lack of work experience with sized-13 font and overly generous spacing for the “References Available upon Request” section in my resume. While I was all-around unsuccessful in securing a job using the resume I frankensteined together (and, instead, resorted to mowing lawns), little did I know that that experience would help me build a decade-long head start in the art of resume writing and resume building.

Ten years later, as I was writing what seemed like the hundredth iteration of my resume and cover letter in search of a full-time job after college, the edge I had built up became increasingly apparent: after having interned or worked with over two-dozen organizations from middle school through college, I was not only armed with a resume filled with work experiences, but I was also ready to pounce on any question interviewers could throw my way.

Meanwhile, to this day I see resumes from brilliant college seniors filled with demanding courses, but little substance in their experience section articulating their leadership and problem solving skills. Worse, the useless “References Available upon Request” section is somehow still present in all too many resumes I come across.

Reality struck: if you want an edge in the post-college job search, start resume-building in college.

Indeed, of the attributes that employers look for in job applicants, internships and employment ranked the highest, while college GPA and college reputation ranked the lowest.[1] With nearly 60% of graduating seniors having held at least one internship, [2] not having any work experience effectively puts you in the bottom half of the application pile – a place you do not want to find yourself.

Importance of Attributes in Evaluating Graduates for Hire

Unfortunately, such guidance too often falls on deaf freshman ears despite college career offices’ repeated attempts. Of the dozens of career counselors I have spoken to, too often do they see seniors floundering just days before commencement. One college career center I interviewed even sets up a booth adjacent to the commencement lawn.

So what’s to be done?

The message has to get out – and from as many trusted sources as possible: internships are hardly optional.

Just as Millennials find online user-generated content (messaging from peers rather than authorities) 50% more trustworthy than other (traditional) media,[3] the college career center should be but one of many bearers of this message: the message also has to come from alums, parents, mentors, and peers not in the form of a formal workshop, but rather as an insider tip on “what I wish I had known.”

Work experience matters – and having it on your resume is just as, if not even more important than good grades. Pass it on.

[1] https://chronicle.com/items/biz/pdf/Employers%20Survey.pdf

[2] http://www.naceweb.org/2012-student-survey.aspx (links to 2016 report)

[3] http://corp.crowdtap.com/socialinfluence

Gorick Ng helps companies work more productively with Millennials. From his work Gorick has spent thousands of hours understanding the experiences of Millennials, career counselors, and employers – and the “soft skills” and “hard skills” gaps that exist in the transition from school to work.

Gorick is pursuing his MBA Harvard Business School and is a graduate of Harvard College, where he now serves as a Resident Tutor leading pre-career advising. He was the first in his family to attend high school and college and is passionate about helping young people pursue their dreams.

More on Gorick here: https://www.linkedin.com/in/gorickng

 

 

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