Michele Groves – Advisor II, Career Resource Center |
State College of Florida, Manatee-Sarasota
For students at a state/community college or technical school, internships are a great way to gain real-world experience, learn about local businesses, and network with professionals in their career field. Every career center deals with experiential learning in some manner – whether overseeing the internship process, connecting students to learning opportunities, or helping interns incorporate their experience onto their resume. [Yes, we could debate terminology; however, for purposes of this post, “internship” will be used when talking about all forms of experiential learning.]
As career service professionals, we understand the importance of internships. Seeking out best practices serves to help career center staff improve their interaction with students searching for and completing internships. Last November, the Florida College System (FCS) Chancellor recognized Seminole State College of Florida as one of four winners of the Chancellor’s Best Practice Awards for 2015. Seminole State’s submission, the Business and Information Management Capstone Project, challenges graduating students to solve real-world business problems and present their findings to faculty and industry representatives.
During the 2016 FloridaACE Annual Conference, the Florida Colleges Career Services Consortium will host a breakout session for its members and internships will be the focus of the discussion. FCCSC is made up of all Career Services professionals who work at Florida’s state/community colleges or technical schools and has a group page on LinkedIn. We had a great member turnout for this meeting last year. Internships are a hot topic at the moment and will continue to evolve and grow at Florida schools. I hope many FCCSC members will be able to attend the session and add to the list of internship best practices.
Rob Liddell, Saint Leo University
Greetings friends! I don’t know about you but Daylight Savings came at a much needed time. I have been looking for any extra time in my day and week to invest in my family, my colleagues and my students. In times like these I find it important to remember that…
- We have all been given the same amount of time.
- We have also been given an opportunity to invest our attention in various people, processes and pursuits.
- What we invest our time, talent and treasure in reflect our values and comes to fill our lives.
The members of the Florida Association of Colleges and Employers have made an important investment in me, personally and professionally. Through this association I have had opportunities to hear about innovative approaches as I listen to others describe how career development and university relations are changing “on the fly.” Unique to this group, professionals from a broad spectrum of higher education institutions and industries are consistently generous to offer their best thinking and to identify their missteps so that a colleague will have a greater opportunity to succeed. Lastly, Florida ACE has provided me several friends; not mere acquaintances or professional network. These are people that pick the phone up when you call and are genuinely interested in hearing an update or helping with a request.
John Sheehy (Stetson) and I are leading the President’s Council committee for this year’s Conference. The President’s Council serves an important role within our Association. Not only does it provide organizations, institutions, vendors and individuals an opportunity to express their sustained commitment to this strong professional group by sponsoring aspects of our Conference, the President’s Council partners with these supporters to amplify their brand amongst the Association membership.
After serving on the Board this past year, I have a much fuller understanding about what goes into hosting a great Annual Conference. In addition to working diligently to select strong venues and creatively to attract first-tier keynote speakers, feeding and providing audio/visual services for our attendees requires a good deal of support. We are asking you to please consider supporting the Florida Association of Colleges and Employers through the President’s Council. Our sponsorship levels are shared below in a table. A link to an online form can be found here.
Should you have an in-kind gift or an idea for a sponsorship that you would like to discuss, please contact either John (firstname.lastname@example.org) or I (email@example.com).
John Sheehy, Stetson University — Rob Liddell, Saint Leo University
Sarah Fox – Career Planning Coordinator – University of West Florida
Career Services professionals know the importance of interacting with and supporting college students as they progress through their college education. This interaction and support provides an innate value to students; a value that cannot be replaced or eliminated. In fall 2015, the University of West Florida (UWF) Career Services office implemented a new tracking method to gauge students’ repeated interaction with the office. Past tracking methods involved analyzing certain populations such as freshman and alumni, but there was no consistent measure of repeated interactions by individual students.
In August 2015, the Career Services office decided to add a question to the already created Satisfaction survey, which every student takes after their appointment with a Career Coach. The following question was added: Would you like your Career Coach to follow-up with you via email?
The concluding data for the fall 2015 semester shows that out of 920 in-person student appointments, 218 students requested a follow-up email. This equates to approximately 24% of the students who had an appointment, requested a follow-up email. Of the 218 students who requested a follow-up email, 53 additional appointments were scheduled. This equates to approximately 25% of the follow-up emails translating to appointments that were scheduled during the fall semester. The Career Services office also calculated the follow-up requests based on student classification. The data shows that seniors requested the most, at 36%, followed by juniors at 18%, and sophomores at 15%.
These initial findings tell the UWF Career Services office a few things. First, they now know that almost 24% of the students with whom they met in fall 2015 wished to receive a follow-up email. Second, they now know that almost 25% of the follow-up emails resulted in additional appointments. And third, seniors are trending as the classification that requested the most follow-up emails. This data could conclude an initial hypothesis that seniors are requesting repeated interactions because of their proximity to graduation.
Going forward, the Career Services office will use this data to cross-tabulate it with specific populations, including students who have not declared a major and students who are academically at risk. The office will also use the data to evaluate trends based on classifications and GPAs, as well as demographic data. Continued data collection will allow the UWF Career Services office to tell the whole story – who the students are, and how the UWF Career Services office has helped them formulate a path that leads to career success.