In an attempt to increase usage of their services and strengthen their program offerings, officials in Kirkwood Community College’s Career Services Department held a focus group to gain student input as they continuously assess their resources.
As such, they diligently work to firmly establish collaborative relationships with faculty, staff, recruiters and industry experts to ensure that their services are highly competitive and significantly comparable to what students need in preparation for future career success.
In recent months, the department has made presentations during student classroom lectures and worked with the college’s instructional designers to create videos on career topics. They also travel each week to the Iowa City campus to provide in-person services there as well.
“Our network of local employers is large, and we frequently connect students with professionals currently working in their occupation of interest,” said Lexi Fields, one of the college’s Career Services Coaches. “We highly encourage these informational interviews as both a career exploration opportunity and a job search and networking strategy.”
In order to provide students with the tools necessary to prepare for the job market, the department currently offers resume reviews, mock interviews and career coaching and assessments to help ensure that students find a suitable career match based on their individual interests.
They also tout the use of a career engagement platform called Handshake which allows employers to post their jobs and internships directly to students. According to Fields, the online platform allows students to conduct their own employment searches, research local and national employers, connect with career mentors and search for local career events.
Moreover, if students want a more personalized experience, they can book a meeting through the department’s online scheduling portal, Calendly, to meet one-on-one with one of several Career Service Coaches, Fields added.
“We are happy to meet with anyone for individualized career coaching, where you’ll get expert advice for your career development,” Fields said. “It’s never too early to get a jump start on your career journey.”