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New Career Center will help students envision their future

Robin Hammond, director of the Ira A. Fulton School of Engineering Career Center, advises students about how to prepare themselves for seeking internships and employment.

September 14, 2007

Students will be getting “something far beyond traditional job placement” from the new Ira A. Fulton School of Engineering Career Center, says Robin Hammond.

“This is about giving students the tools to develop clarity for a vision for their vocations and their lives,” explains Hammond, director of the center that opened its doors at the start of the fall semester.

The center’s programs are being designed to prepare students to be top candidates for internships and full-time employment.

Coaching, counseling, career fairs and job-search training will be among services the center provides. But it will offer much more than merely a basic advisement service.

“We want to help students map out how they can get the most out of their investment in higher education,” Hammond says. “Our goal is to create a platform from which they can put themselves on a pathway to career success.”

The new center is to be a driving force in the School of Engineering’s mission “to provide each student with the opportunity to individualize their education,” says James Collofello, associate dean of the schools Office of Academic and Student Affairs.

Hammond comes the School of Engineering after 14 years of experience in career services at ASU, where she rose to assistant director of the university’s career services.

She decided to take the job with the Engineering Career Center “because of the commitment to growth and excellence I saw from the school’s leaders,” she says, “and I was inspired by Dean [Deirdre] Meldrum’s intention for the school to have a global impact.”

From Hammond’s perspective, the groundwork for global outreach starts with building relationships between faculty, administrators and students that will bolster efforts necessary to make the Engineering School “a school of choice among employers.”

The career center’s success will hinge on developing close, long-term industry connections on a global scale, as well as connecting students to programs that will enhance their career opportunities. In particular, Hammond wants to see students take advantage of courses and training offered by the Engineering School’s Office of Entrepreneurial Programs.

“Our job is to do consciousness-raising, to get students to think about preparing for their careers in ways that go beyond doing well in their classroom studies,” Hammond says. “We want to help them learn to be pro-active, to learn how to motivate themselves and to build confidence in their abilities, and develop the skills to present themselves well to potential employers.”

One of the center’s first projects is devising a set of guidelines designed to help students get on a career-oriented track.

First-year students would be encouraged to explore options that would help them define the areas of engineering that might best fit with their interests and life goals.

Second-year students would be encouraged to supplement their engineering education with training in areas that would aid them in finding employment, such as communications skills.

“By their junior year we would hope to have students already targeting the areas of the job market that are in need of their specific skills, and be ready for an aggressive pursuit of internships,” Hammond says.

The Engineering Career Center is the Brickyard building at Seventh Street and Mill Avenue, Suite 311. Students can schedule an appointment to discuss careers needs by calling (480) 965-2966.

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Fulton Schools

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