Developing Next Generation Career Services

Strategies for Increasing Alumni and Employer Engagement

Topics: Internships and Co-Op Programs, Career Services, Student Experience, Student Affairs, Student Employment, Experiential Learning

High Profile Industry Mentors

Providing Access to Exceptional Alumni

Wesleyan’s Executive in Residence Program

Council research illustrated how Wesleyan is also creating special opportunities for students to interact with high profi le mentors in various fi elds. The executive in residence program brings successful alumni in various fi elds back to campus for visits that range from a half day to several days. During their time on campus, executives participate in a range of activities, such as collaborations with faculty, skills workshops, and one-on-one meetings with students.

Career services staff work with alumni to customize the visit itinerary to fi t their preferences, interests, and time constraints. For example, a Winter 2011 visit with an alumnus and former athlete working at Goldman Sachs incorporated a meeting with current student athletes to discuss ways to leverage their sports experiences in recruiting conversations.

Providing Access to Exceptional Alumni

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Facilitating "Wow" Experiences for Students

Wesleyan Focuses on Securing Time with High Impact Mentors

Every institution has notable alumni, but current students rarely have an opportunity to meet them as most high-profi le visits tend to focus on topical lectures. In contrast, Wesleyan’s program not only gives students an opportunity to meet high-profi le alumni but also focuses their interactions on industry advice and broader career issues, such as capitalizing on the strengths of a liberal arts education on the job.

 

Council conversations reveal that the executive in residence program is rooted in strong collaborations across the university with career services working closely with institutional advancement and academic affairs to select alumni and coordinate their visit agendas.

Facilitating "Wow" Experiences for Students

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Uncertainty Regarding the Path Ahead

Questions and Issues Troubling College Seniors

Another way to narrow the pool of students and alumni is to connect these groups at critical junctures in the career exploration and job search process. For example, some institutions are focused on bringing together college seniors with recent graduates and alumni to help with practical, next-step issues.

Uncertainty Regarding the Path Ahead

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Terrain-Focused Networking Communities

Job Search Summits