Career Development Overview For Students
Chatham University’s Office of Career Development provides career advising to students and alumni that develops job search skills they will use throughout their working lives. In addition, we guide students through the steps for securing academic credit to meet the University’s internship requirement and we assist them in securing student employment.
Contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org or 412-365-1209.
We offer one-on-one advising, programs and workshops, job and internship postings, job fairs, job shadowing and internship assistance, mock interview sessions, networking opportunities, a weekly e-newsletter, print resources, in–class presentations, and a two–credit Career Preparation course during Maymester.
Self–assessment: We help students evaluate internships, jobs, and career paths based on their strengths, values, skills, interests, and circumstances. Developing effective resumes and cover letters: These documents shape a prospective employer’s first impression of a candidate and can make the difference between getting an interview and being rejected immediately. We help students learn how to craft these documents so that the employer can see how their background and skills meet the employer’s needs. Students learn how to adapt their resumes for different employers. Using Job Search Tools: We help students use a range of job posting services, including NACElink, Chatham’s internal job posting resource, to find and apply to internships, student employment, and post-graduate positions of interest to them. Networking: In this economy especially, the importance of networking cannot be overstated because many positions are filled through networking, without ever being posted. We help every job-seeker, however shy or seemingly without “connections,” find people to network with in a way that is comfortable for them. Interviewing: We help students figure out how to effectively convey their suitability for a position based on their strengths, their understanding of the employer, and their interest in the position. We also help them answer questions regarding their weaknesses and explain any potential “problem” areas (lack of direct experience, a low grade, termination from prior employment, etc.).
Fast Facts from the 2011-2012 Academic Year
Number of employers participating in last year’s on-and off-campus job fairs: 377
Number of internships secured by Chatham students from fall 2011 through summer 2012: 153
Number of students with work-study/student employment positions: 387
Number of majors represented among internships: 29
% of employers who prefer candidates with relevant work experience: 73.7%
% of employers who prefer candidates with internships/student employment experience: 55%
Student Employment and Federal Work Study
What is Student Employment?
Student Employment is a program through which any full-time student can work in University-approved positions.
Are Student Employment and Federal Work Study (FWS) the same thing?
No, student employment is the umbrella program and work study is the type of financial aid some students are eligible for through Federal Work Study. FWS provides financial aid for students to work on or off campus through approved community services agencies.
Do I need any official documents to work through Student Employment?
Yes, students who are new to working on-campus are required to complete the I-9 DHS form to establish employment eligibility. Please visit http://www.uscis.gov/files/form/i-9.pdf to review the necessary forms of identification. Students must submit the originals of these required documents; copies are not accepted.
How can I apply for positions?
Once you receive your Chatham email address, you will be able to register on NACELink, our job posting database, through my.chatham on the University’s website. We recommend that students begin to apply in late July or early August.
Am I guaranteed a job if I am awarded Federal Work Study?
No, selection for a position is based on the employer’s assessment of your skills and qualifications and your interview.
Internships and Exeriential Learning
What is Experiential Learning?
Experiential Learning is knowledge gained outside of the classroom through internships, job shadowing, employment, volunteering, and other real world experience.
Are internships required?
Yes, students are required to earn at least 3 credits of internship and can earn as many as 18 over the course of their undergraduate education. Some majors require more than 3 internship credits.
When can I do an internship?
After completing their first term at Chatham, students who have at least a 2.0 GPA and the approval of their faculty advisors can complete internships in any term. International students must obtain approval to pursue an internship from the office of International Affairs.
What kinds of internships do students do?
Students do internships that are relevant to their majors and interests – a biology major did her summer 2012 internship at the Cincinnati Zoo & Botanical Gardens and plans to do another internship with the Pittsburgh Zoo and PPG Aquarium in the fall; an accounting major did her summer 2012 internship with a major accounting firm in Puerto Rico; a professional communications major did her spring 2012 internship for the Director of Enrollment Management in the Chatham University Admissions office; a mathematics major interned with Tree Pittsburgh during her last semester at Chatham in the spring of 2012 and went on to volunteer for the organization after she graduated. Internship opportunities with businesses and non-profits are available to students of all majors over the summer and during the academic year and can be found in the Pittsburgh area and beyond.
How does Career Development assist students with internships?
Students receive guidance in each step of the internship process from the Coordinator of Experiential Learning and a Career Advisor. Steps include: securing an internship site, application and interview preparation, internship registration, and guided reflection and evaluation. Career Development collaborates with faculty to ensure the best internship experience possible.
Can my internship count as my Work Study/Student Employment position?
No, students must choose between receiving academic credit and being paid through the Federal Work Study/Student Employment Programs.