The University-wide career center will expand programming next month to teach students how to market themselves to employers, part of a larger effort to push students to think about job prospects early.
This year’s National Student Employment Week, from April 8 to 12, will feature several workshops to help students reflect on experiences from their part-time or federal work-study jobs that can be applied later.
“We’re really shifting focus. We don’t want it to be just a transactional thing. We don’t want you to come here just to get your I-9 processed,” Assistant Provost for Career Services Rachel Brown said.
Brown added that the career center wants students to stop thinking about a part-time or federal work-study position as “just a job.” She said the programs will help students identify skills they are developing in the workplace and ways they can make those stand out on a resume – even if students’ part-time jobs may not be in their intended job field.
“It can be difficult, at times, to see the connections, and that’s one of the things we can do to help – provide resources and tools for students to start to see the connection between what they are doing in these positions, the skills they are building and how they can relate to their career development and future,” Brown said.
Brown took the helm of GW’s career center last month, after an almost yearlong search. She will lead the center as it moves into the next phases of a massive overhaul started last year to better prepare students for the job market after graduation.
Bridget Schwartz, hiring and pay services manager for GW’s Office of Student Employment, said the University tries to offer many options for federal work-study jobs – not only on campus, but also with off-campus partners.
“We are developing programs to help students make the most of these opportunities. It’s really a win-win approach,” she said in an email.
The week of programing will focus on work-study jobs and award one person a Student Employee of the Year Award.
Brown said more than 40 students were nominated, the most ever at GW.