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Career Center helps jump start students’ future

Career Center logo

The Career Center at UNC Pembroke is committed to serving students and alumni to help start up their professional futures. With online resources, events and an array of services to match students and alums to jobs and internships, the Career Center is a hub for student engagement on campus.

The Center, located in the James B. Chavis University Center, offers resources to students and alumni on jobs and internships, graduate school and selecting a major.

Online tools such as Handshake and Big Interview are available free of charge to students. Handshake is the online career management system provided to all UNC Pembroke undergraduates, graduate students and alumni, and is used to search for on-campus jobs, internships, part-time and full-time positions, upcoming events and resources.

Students can schedule appointments to meet with Career Center staff for major and career exploration, resume, cover letter and interview assistance and graduate school internship and job search. Likewise, Big Interview is an online platform where students can prepare for and practice live interview skills. If graduate school is in a student’s future, the career services team can assist students prepare curriculum vitae, review graduate school application essays and provide a mock school interview.

The Career Center offers job search assistance to current students, upcoming graduates and alumni by facilitating connections with employers and teaching individuals how to conduct effective job searches. “A major part of building these connections for students is the events hosted by the Career Center,” explained Dr. Marlane Mowitz, Career Center director.

An annual event of the Center, the Etiquette Dinner and Networking event, took place on March 19 and provided students exposure to a professional dining experience. Seventy-one students and 12 employers attended. Students practiced their networking skills by meeting at least five other participants at the event. Karen Thompson, a Washington School of Protocol expert, led students through the five-course formal dining experience with an employer coaching them at each table.

“Real-life professional experiences are paramount for students’ development and being ready to enter the job/workforce after graduation. We are seeing more and more opportunities for our students, and are providing more resources for our students each day,” continued Dr. Mowitz.

A further example of this is the Career Center’s recent Grad Finale event. Through this two-day event, the career center staff met with 566 students teaching them the importance of using their LinkedIn profile to network during their job search and graduate school application process. Over 40 graduating students had their professional headshots taken for their LinkedIn profiles.

While the Career Center always has their doors open to students on campus, they recently took their services a step further through a partnership with JCPenney in Fayetteville. The Suit Up event on March 24 drew over 125 students to Cross Creek Mall. At the event, students were offered special pricing on suits and had assistance on professional wardrobe style and fitting options.

“This is the first professional suit and dress shoes that I have ever owned and it makes me more confident when meeting employers,” stated UNCP student Jacobe Jacobs.

Forty students received $50 suit gift cards donated by UNC Pembroke’s Student Government Association and Counseling and Psychological Services. Volunteers from the Office of Campus Engagement and Leadership, Fraternity and Sorority Life, Counseling and Psychological Services and Career Center helped students select their clothing. UNCP’s Spirit Squad and mascot also cheered students on through the event.

“We are thrilled to see our students taking advantage of the resources available as they prepare their professional careers. Connecting students with tools and skills, and then industries of their choice is exactly why we are here. Our Braves see that and are seizing the opportunities. We’re proud to help them make the connections that will carry them far,” said Dr. Mowitz.