New Leadership and Professional Development Initiatives Prep Arts and Sciences Students for Career Success

New Leadership and Professional Development Initiatives Prep Arts and Sciences Students for Career Success

The College recently announced the launch of a new Leadership and Professional Development Program and the grand opening of its Career and Professional Development Office

Having two career and professional development staff members... sends a message to students that they are not alone, that they have someone who really understands their unique challenges and is there to meet them throughout the career development process.

— Kimberly Nickolenko, director of career engagement

At the start of the academic year, the College of Arts and Sciences announced the launch of its new Leadership and Professional Development Program, an Arts and Sciences specific series of workshops and panels designed to complement students’ academic work while building career readiness. Students who elect to participate in the program learn a variety of skills to achieve their short and long-term career goals while gaining a competitive edge in today’s job market.

Each level of the Leadership and Professional Development Program focuses on building specific career competencies, including analytical and critical thinking, applied problem solving, ethical reasoning and decision making, oral and written communication, teamwork and leadership, engaging diversity, active citizenship and community engagement, digital literacy, career management, and professionalism and work ethic. The program is structured to shepard students throughout the career development process by helping them explore potential employment options, make confident decisions related to their career trajectory, and take the necessary steps to achieve their goals.The program also features a series of signature events including the College’s annual Humanities at Work lecture, How I Got My Internship panel, What Can I Do with this Major alumni event, mock interviews, and the new Common Ground Lecture Series, an Open VISIONS Forum series founded by Richard A. Greenwald, PhD, dean of the College of Arts and Sciences. The Common Ground Lecture Series fulfills the University’s mission to engage students and community members in the “life of the mind” and in the Jesuit principles of “examen,” or prayerful review and reflection on the events of the day.

“As a culture, we have seemingly lost the ability to have a civil dialogue on important issues,” Dr. Greenwald said. “We are divided and isolated, and as a result, democracy suffers. The Common Ground series is an effort to bring back that civil dialogue and debate – to showcase important voices and demonstrate civility in the process.”

In addition to launching the Leadership and Professional Development Program, the College also announced the opening of a new Career and Professional Development Office spearheaded by Kimberly Nickolenko, director of career engagement, and Stephanie Gallo, director of career planning. Both Nickolenko and Gallo bring a wealth of career counseling and professional development experience to these key positions and will be instrumental in implementing new initiatives to further elevate the professional opportunities that exist for students within the College’s various majors.

“Having two career and professional development staff members empowers the College to develop and run programming that helps students progress throughout their career journey,” Nickolenko said. “It also sends a message to students that they are not alone, that they have someone who really understands their unique challenges and is there to meet them throughout the career development process.“

Fairfield’s College of Arts and Sciences boasts a 97.3% post-graduation employment rate - one of the highest in the nation - and plans to maintain that number through the various services provided by the Career and Professional Development Office. A few of the opportunities available to students include career and major exploration, assessment reviews (MBTI, Strong Interest Inventory, StrengthsQuest), interview preparation, internship exploration and networking, and LinkedIn profile maximization. 

Students interested in scheduling an appointment with a career development staff member can do so by contacting the College’s Career and Professional Development Office at (203) 254-2227. Office hours are Monday through Friday from 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. in Canisus Hall.

Tags:  College of Arts & Sciences

Last modified: 04-25-19 11:58 PM

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