Finding a job at any stage of your life can be hard, but seeking a job while you’re in school with an employer who can work around your schedule and understand your needs as a student can often prove to be a difficult task. The good news is, the Career Center on campus is available to help both TMCC students and alumni find a job. Whether it’s an on-campus job, a part-time job off-campus, a work-study, an internship, or a career, the Career Center offers tools and strategies for students to succeed in their job hunt.
Sidney Sullivan is the Manager at the Career Center, and she is focused on finding those opportunities for students to enter the workforce. Opportunities can always be found either on CareerLink, or on the physical job board outside of the Career Center and at the other campuses.
“We’re working on a lot of methods to help students get to that point where they’re not just graduating with a degree or certificate, but with the work skills that will serve them well in that first out-of-college job and throughout their career,” Sullivan said.
According to Sullivan, it’s important to hold a job while also in school, and not just for the benefit of earning wages. Students earn much more as employees, including building their resume, learning basic skills that employers are looking for, and preparing themselves for what a career might look like so they are ready to land that dream job once they complete a degree or certificate.
The Career Center partners with the National Association of Colleges and Employers (NACE) and offers students the opportunity to learn the eight competencies employers are seeking. The eight “career readiness” competencies include critical thinking and problem solving, oral and written communications, teamwork and collaboration, digital technology, leadership, professionalism and work ethic, career management, and global and intercultural fluency. By working on these eight competencies throughout their college career, students will have better success in obtaining and sustaining a professional career.
“If you can learn what your eight competencies are, and practice them in school and on the job, you’ll be successful no matter what you choose to do in your career,” said Marcie Iannacchione, Internship Program Coordinator.
Iannacchione facilitates the Internship Program at TMCC, and helps connect employers with students who are studying for a degree in the same industry. Internships are counted as an elective course, and can be completed within a student’s last two semesters at TMCC. Though it’s not a requirement, internships are encouraged so that students can fully understand the degree or certificate they are working to obtain. Student interns earn college credit and also gain valuable work experience, as well as determine if they are on the right path in their career choices.
The Career Center has on staff a certified professional resume writer, Kelley Wong, who leads several workshops for students throughout the year. These workshops include resume and cover letter writing, building a LinkedIn account, interview preparation, and networking tips where you can make a business card to print out and take with you. Workshops are hosted both in-person and online through canvas, and students are encouraged to set appointments with the Career Center if they need some extra help or if they can’t attend a workshop.
“Once a student has identified the type of work they’re looking for, they can come in to the Career Center and we will help with resume writing, reviewing LinkedIn profiles to make sure they look good, we can help with applications, talk about how to dress for the interview, and conduct mock interviews to prepare for the real interview,” Wong said. “There are a lot of resources available, and everyone in the Career Center is always eager to help.”
The Career Center also offers workshops in Career Exploration, where students can talk with a counselor in to discuss their options for the future. To find out when the next workshop will be held, please contact the Counseling Center.
The online portal, CareerLink, houses all of the open listings of job opportunities for students. All you have to do is log in with your student email address. Jobs include on-campus listings, off-campus listings, volunteer work and internships. There are so many opportunities for students to gain meaningful employment, you just have to be willing to search.
Valerie Lambert is the Student Employment Program Officer at TMCC, and she helps students search for, obtain, and thrive in student jobs.
“A big reason student don’t apply for jobs on campus is simply because they weren’t aware of the program,” Lambert said. “It’s actually not hard to get a job on campus.”
There are many different avenues you can take in order to obtain employment, and TMCC staff is here to help. Currently, there are over 30 student jobs available on campus, and many more outside opportunities on CareerLink. Jobs are posted every day, so be sure to check often for a position that’s right for you. Also, if you have a certain interest and you don’t see a job available, sit down with the staff in the Career Center or Lambert in the Financial Aid Office, and they can work with you in finding or creating that job.
For more information on student employment and career preparation, contact the Career Center and make an appointment with a staff member.