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Saint Mary’s Career Crossings Office aids in student job hunt

| Friday, May 16, 2014

Director of the Career Crossings Office (CCO) Stacie Jeffirs said according to the Collegiate Employment Research Institute (CERI), hiring of bachelor’s level college graduates is up seven percent this year over the last year.

“Although the increase is slight, the job outlook for college graduates has been making a steady and gradual comeback since the recession hit in 2008 and 2009,” Jeffirs said.

Jeffirs said the College’s graduate destination survey showed that approximately 73 percent of the class of 2014 intends to pursue employment opportunities while almost 40 percent intend to pursue graduate or professional school or other studies. A little more than 12 percent intend to pursue internships or externships and 6.8 percent intend to pursue post-graduate service or volunteer opportunities.

The survey results overlap in some categories, as some graduates intend to pursue graduate or professional school or other studies in addition to employment or other activities, Jeffirs said.

Senior Gianna Burkhardt will attend King’s College in London after graduation to work towards a masters in English literature with a focus in literature from the 1850s-present.

After studying abroad in Rome during her sophomore year, Burkhardt said she knew she wanted to travel post-graduation.

“Prior to studying in Rome, I thought I was bound to the United States, but after, I have discovered a whole new world waiting for me to explore it,” she said. “If it hadn’t been for my education and experience at Saint Mary’s, I’m not sure if I would have the courage to follow my passion.”

Burkhardt said she hopes to develop her love for English literature in a place so rooted in its history while using the skills she developed during her time at Saint Mary’s.

“I will be studying English literature, which I think will be a richer experience because I’ll have many of the documents I will be studying right at my disposal at the British Library,” Burkhardt said. “King’s also offers internships as a part of their grad studies at places like the Globe Theater and British Museum, so I will be looking to participate in a more well-rounded experience in that way. 

“I also think living abroad teaches you a type of independence that can only come from being abroad.”

Jeffirs said the liberal arts education Saint Mary’s provides gives students the necessary tools to be competitive and relevant in today’s economy.

“The College prepares students to be global citizens and to be able to respond to the ever-changing workforce not only through classroom experiences, but also experiential activities and campus leadership opportunities,” she said.

Burkhardt said her Saint Mary’s education has made all the difference in allowing her to craft and follow her dreams.

“I think my English professors as well as the Saint Mary’s study abroad program have prepared me so well for the next part of my journey,” she said. “My professors have given me the tools that are necessary to create thoughtful and scholarly insights on literature and how to stand on my own in class discussion.”

Jeffirs said CCO has been a valuable resource for many seniors this year, providing students with education and resources to aid those looking for a job.

“We assist students in the entire job search process including networking strategies, connecting students to alumnae through our Alumnae Resource Network and LinkedIn, researching employers and options, writing resumes and cover letters and honing interviewing skills,” Jeffirs said. “We teach students the job searching and decision making skills they can use throughout their entire life.”

Jeffirs said CCO will be open all summer. 

“Our office offers lifetime services to alumnae and is here to help graduates even after commencement,” she said.

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About Haleigh Ehmsen

A senior at Saint Mary's, Haleigh is majoring in Communication Studies and English Literature & Writing. She serves as the Saint Mary's editor and enjoys coffee, guacamole and good books.

Contact Haleigh