Tuesday, March 20, 2012

An Interview with the James W. Stuckert Career Center

Amanda Laborio, Marketing Intern

With May rapidly approaching, many graduating seniors are in the process of nailing down their post-graduation career plans.  From resumes to interviews, the process of getting hired can be daunting, but UK students should know they are not on their own in this endeavor.  The James W. Stuckert Career Center provides career counseling and services for all students and alumni. Azetta Beatty, Senior Assistant Director of the Stuckert Career Center and Liaison to the Gatton College of Business and Economics, was kind enough to answer some questions on career hunting and what the Stuckert Career Center, located at 408 Rose Street, can do for students.  

What should students who are closer to graduating be focusing on as they begin their job search?

Know that the job search starts long before you need a job. Finding a job can take 6 months in a good economy. Building your skills and experiences over time will help you be competitive for the job search. Network. Get several resume critiques. Conduct a practice interview. Use all of your resources including family and friends, online sites, company websites, specialty websites, network at career fair and networking events.      

What is one piece of advice you wish someone had told you when you were beginning your career?

I wish someone had told me more about the daily operations of a workplace and how to effectively integrate yourself into a staff as the newcomer, as well as the importance of personalities in the workplace. In short, communication, communication, communication of all kinds.

What would you recommend underclassmen do to prepare for life after college and finding a job?

Start early (as a freshman or sophomore) and have a plan of action or goals list. Career development is a process that takes time to implement. First, figure out what direction you want to take. For example, what type of work makes you happy, what interest you, what energizes you. Second, research some possible careers and employers. Third, conduct some info interviews with professionals, network with people who are doing what you may want to do one day. Fourth, get involved and develop your leadership skills via campus or community outreach. Attend workshops, events, conferences, etc. Fifth, join organizations that relate to your career path. Finally, know that it’s okay to change your mind. As you get experiences they will help you shape your goals and determine what you really want to do. As a professional, you never know where your career path may take you. Just get started!

After graduating, what kind of relationship would the Career Center like to have with its alumni? 

The UK Alumni Association has two staff dedicated to helping UK alumni with career-related assistance. The Stuckert Career Center works closely with the alumni counselors.

What events does the Stuckert Career Center have coming up?
We have weekly career assessment workshops on Thursdays, internship info session, and employer info sessions. In addition, we have the following events:

Career Networking Reception, Mar. 7th 5-7 p.m., Student Center’s Rasdall Gallery
Kentucky Teachers’ Network Job Fair, Mar. 27th 3:30-6:00 p.m., Student Center Grand Ballroom
Etiquette Dinner, April 5th 6:30-8:00 p.m., Student Center Small Ballroom
“Using Social Media in your Job Search” Workshop on April 10th 3:30-4:30 p.m., Center Theatre
“Last Minute Job Search” Workshop, April 11th 11-1 p.m., Alumni House

In addition to these questions, Beatty shared a few other ways students can build a relationship with the Career Center. First, the Career Center offers “Quick Career Consults” Monday-Thursday from 11-3 pm for students who need a quick 10-15 minutes of assistance. Also, the Career Center offers a free online career management system, Wildcat CareerLink, which allows students to create an account, find employer information, as well as search and apply for jobs and internships. To sign up for a Wildcat CareerLink account, check out other resources for students, and learn more about the Career Center, visit their website at www.uky.edu/CareerCenter. 

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