ESU Seniors Learn Skills To Transition from College to Career

Posted by: Valentina Caval on March 18, 2013, No Comments

Ten ESU students, who will graduate this year, were among the more than 110 students from six universities who attended a Senior Transitions Conference March 1-2 in Williamsport, Pa.  Among those ESU students who attended were, from left: first row (left to right): Jonathan Santana, Nicole Nightlinger and Melissa Spino. Back row (left to right): Evan Harris, Nico Ramirez, Sara Czyz, Kaela Swartley, Dani Shade, Katherine Ackerman. Missing from the photo is ESU student  Scott Meade.

Writing an effective resume, learning proper interviewing skills and evaluating job offers are skills that are vitally important for soon-to-be college graduates to master. Ten East Stroudsburg University of Pennsylvania (ESU) students, who will graduate this year, were among the more than 110 students from six universities who attended a Senior Transitions Conference March 1-2 in Williamsport, Pa.  The event provided opportunities for these ESU seniors to improve upon their ability to transition from college to the real world and to network with potential employers and students in a professional environment.

According to Daria Wielebinski, director of career development and student success at ESU, the two-day conference featured mock job interviews and resume workshops and offered information on networking. “Attendees enjoyed seminars and speakers that demonstrated the key skills necessary to thrive in the world after graduation,” said Wielebinski. “ Student participant discussions focused on financial issues, such as credit and FICO scores, repaying student loans and evaluating a job offer and benefits package. Attendees also learned about projecting a professional image, how to use social media for career networking, office politics, dining etiquette and learning one’s way around a new community.”

ESU seniors who attended the conference were: Katherine Ackerman, a business management major from Nazareth, Pa.; Sara Czyz, a business management major with a marketing concentration and a secondary major of Spanish from Philadelphia, Pa.; Evan Harris, a psychology major from Holland, Pa.; Scott Meade, a history major with a major concentration in public history, from Kingston, Pa.; Nicole Nightlinger, a special education and middle level education science major from Bensalem, Pa.; Nico Ramirez, a biology major from Dingmans Ferry, Pa.; Jonathan Santana, a psychology major from East Stroudsburg, Pa.; Dani Shade, majoring in early childhood and special education from Willow Grove, Pa.; Melissa Spino, an early childhood education major from Colonia, N.J.; and Kaela Swartley, an early childhood and special education major from Trappe, Pa.

Nightlinger said she and the other education majors are glad they attended. “This conference was a life-saver. We (the participating ESU education majors) now feel that we will be prepared to apply for jobs, and go on interviews.  I have been telling my friends about this conference and what I learned and they are all really interested and hope that this will be an opportunity they, too, can participate in.  I gained tremendous insight by attending this conference and plan to use the information to better myself in the post-senior responsibilities.”  

“I had an amazing experience, learned much useful information that I will apply in my near future, and had the chance to meet many people whom I will keep in touch with,” added Ackerman.

Harris attended sessions focusing on such things as job interviews and resumes. He also attended Learning Your Way Around a New Community. “This was very helpful because it taught us how to network when moving to a new place. Many of us will have to move where the work is to advance our career and the people who ran this session talked about new cultures, activities, and how to get acclimated to a new area.” He found the seminars to be valuable. 

“This event encouraged students to take charge of their destiny,” said Wielebinski. “It gave students the tools, knowledge and confidence to step out into a very competitive job market, take charge and feel ready for the challenges ahead.  The conference offered the students a professional growth strategy.  Being prepared is the most important thing we can offer the students.  I wish each of the students success in their endeavors and hope that they will continue to utilize ESU’s Career Development office.”

Funding to help ESU students attend the conference was provided by the ESU Student Affairs department and the Noonan Foundation. The six participating schools also shared grant funding from the Pennsylvania Association of Colleges and Employers (PennACE). PennACE is a collaborative organization of career development and recruitment professionals that provides professional growth and networking opportunities to enhance career development practices for Pennsylvania college and university students and graduates.

The career development center at ESU provides a wide range of assistance to ESU students and alumni. Services include career counseling, career workshops, and computer technology based services such as a part time/summer jobs list and links to numerous sites pertaining to internships, career exploration and professional job listings. The office also coordinates career days, job fairs and on-campus recruitment by employers and offers resume critiques and job search guidance.

For more information about the career development and student success department, please contact Daria Wielebinski at 570-422-3282.