August 26, 2013
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Malynda Dorsey
Communications Specialist

The Encounter: Internship and Part-Time Job Fair for VSU Students

VALDOSTA – Valdosta State University students who are interested in gaining practical work experience can visit The Encounter on Wednesday, Aug. 28 from noon to 3 p.m. in the Student Union mezzanine on the third floor. Hosted by the Office of Career Opportunities, this internship and part-time job fair will allow students to meet employers on and off campus looking to recruit interns and fill positions.

“The Encounter is being held to connect local employers with the talented workforce enrolled at VSU while providing experiential learning opportunities for our students,” said Dr. Gerald Williams, director of Career Opportunities. “This is the first time we are holding The Encounter, but on average more than 500 students visit the Office of Career Opportunities each semester to find part-time employment or internships.  We are looking to grow that number on our campus.”

The Encounter is the one of several opportunities students will have for professional develop through the Office of Career Opportunities, a recently formed office that offers programs to assist VSU students in choosing their majors, identifying career objectives, obtaining practical work experience and seeking relevant employment upon graduation. The office consolidated career services and cooperative education offices.

As the year progresses, students can look forward to niche career fairs including a virtual career fair for students in STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Math) disciplines.

“This office allows students to take advantage of free professional development services and opportunities that ultimately make them more marketable and employable,” said Williams. “People come to college to ultimately become employed. The reality is that when employers look at prospects, they look at their skills. This office helps develop those skills. The services that we provide are also consistent with the goals outlined within the Complete College Georgia initiative – keeping students committed to their studies and purpose and creating a knowledgeable and skilled workforce.”

The office provides a four-year plan for students, which includes assistance with identifying majors, cooperative education and internship assistance and career counseling.

“We also work with other offices and departments on campus, such as the Office of Volunteer Services, to help students find volunteer opportunities that could enhance their skills,” said Carla Jordan, assistant director of Career Opportunities.

The office works with VSU graduates who are interested in assistance as well.

“Graduates can always come back to the office and they will continue to be served,” said Kevin Taylor, associate director of Career Opportunities. “The oldest person that I have worked with is a 70-year-old retired librarian looking for a part-time job.”

Williams added that the office is open for graduates who have gone through the office and obtained employment in their fields of study to mentor current students.

The Office of Career Opportunities is located on the second floor of Powell Hall West. The office can be reached at (229) 333-5942 or online at  http://www.valdosta.edu/student/student-services/career-services/ .