By Cole Hatcher
Ohio Wesleyan University’s Career Connection center is expanding its “Career Communities” to include dedicated job experts this fall in seven academic areas.
The experts – known as “career catalysts” – work with students in the career communities of economics and business; education and communication; entrepreneurship; humanities and fine arts; pre-health; social impact (such as pre-law, psychology, and international studies); and STEM (science, technology, engineering, and mathematics).
“Within these career communities, students can engage with their specialized career catalyst, receive targeted job opportunities, participate in industry-specific events with alumni and employers, and have access to a wealth of career-specific resources,” said Leigh Mascolino, director of career development.
The seven career communities encompass the spectrum of Ohio Wesleyan’s more than 70 majors, Mascolino said.
“Career catalysts understand the employment trends in their respective areas,” she said, “and these staff members work closely with faculty to best meet the students’ individual needs and to create new experiential learning opportunities. When a student wants help with their resume, job search, grad school applications, career exploration, and more – a career catalyst will be there to guide them.”
Expanding on Success
The concept of career communities grew out of Ohio Wesleyan’s Woltemade Center for Economics, Business and Entrepreneurship, which has long had a staff member trained to provide career and internship assistance to its students. That person, Carolyn Lammert, is now part of the Career Connection, where she supports students in the economics and business career community and trains new career catalysts.
Also helping to grow Ohio Wesleyan’s career communities are career catalysts Newton Kimberly, OWU Class of 2013, and Danielle Bailey, Ph.D. Kimberly joined the Career Connection team in February to work with students in the social impact career community, and Bailey joined the university in June to support students in the STEM career community.
A ‘Never-Ending Experience’
Megan Ellis, executive director of the OWU Career Connection, said the center’s goal is to work with students throughout their time at Ohio Wesleyan and to ensure they are well-prepared for the future.
“Career Connection is unlike career offices at other universities,” said Ellis, a 2005 Ohio Wesleyan graduate. “We understand career and personal development is an ongoing, never-ending experience, and OWU is committed to treating our work with students in a way that weaves career development into everyday life on campus.
“Career Communities provide a personalized approach for students to explore their diverse interests, while creating connections to and with fellow students, alumni, and industry leaders with similar interests,” Ellis said. “These connections enable us to build a close and inclusive community that will continue to help and support one another.”
Alumni and Volunteer Support
Ellis said the Career Connection’s growth is being supported by many dedicated alumni donors and volunteers.
“This support enables us to work with significantly more OWU students, help a larger percentage land internships and full-time positions, and reduce their financial barriers to taking part in career experiences,” she said.
Learn more about the Career Connection and the support it provides Ohio Wesleyan students at owu.edu/CareerConnection.