April 6, 2020
How does Ursuline College help students stay focused on their academic and career goals in the midst of a pandemic? Julie Jones can count the ways.
Jones, Ursuline’s career development and placement specialist, wants to make sure students stay on track toward the goals they have set, despite the isolation of a closed campus, online learning, and social distancing.
“I am meeting with students with students via Zoom, Facetime, Skype, phone calls, text messages and email; basically, in any and all ways that make it easiest to communicate,” she said. She is best reached by email.
Jones and her staff continue administering the online Essential Professional Skills certification courses developed by Ursuline partner Future Plans. Once students successfully complete these modules (which were deigned as online courses even before the COVID-19 crisis closed campus), they earn nationally recognized certification in up to five areas:
- Self Management
- Communicating Clearly
- Working on Teams
- Thinking on your Feet (Critical Thinking)
- Problem Solving/Problem Identification
“We have 72 students completing the Essential Professional Skills courses and certifications right now,” Jones said April 3. “Employers like to see this evidence of a student’s preparation for the work world,” she added.
Since leaving campus, Jones has met electronically with dozens of current students and alumni to work on resumés or curricula vitae. “We are also beginning to use a platform called Big Interview to help improve their resumés and prepare for face-to-face and virtual interviews.”
Jones contacted the 1,400 employers in Ursuline’s job search platform to connect students with upcoming internship opportunities for summer and fall. She’ll also be presenting students with opportunities to join virtual career fairs over the next few weeks and to explore the Ohio Means Jobs employment page for those who need jobs now.
“Students already in internships transitioned seamlessly from in-office work to from-home work and the employers with whom they are working were more than accommodating,” Jones said. “Each of our students will successfully complete their requirements amidst this unprecedented time for employers. We are more than pleased with the students and grateful to the employers for helping our students get the experience they need in these tough times.”
Career services at Ursuline are made available to undergraduates, graduate students and alumnae/i.