Photo Credit: Fiifi Frimpong
By Rachel Dalloo and Danielle Cruz
Career Services at York College has developed several online networking and and national database connection services to help students enter the 21st century workforce.
The office provides interested students with opportunities to gain and refine skills needed for the workplace and offers students with professional help with their career development.
This includes services to help students with writing their resumes, applying for jobs or internships, as well as granting access to leadership workshops and networking opportunities.
They offer a variety of programs like Internship Tuesday, which goes over how to navigate Cardinal Careers as well as other resources, and Focus 2 Career Tuesday, which helps students decide what career best suit them and discusses how to use Focus 2, an online career, major and education planning system.
“We want to prepare students, not for a job but for a career,” said Linda Chesney, the Career Services director.
Cardinal Careers is one of the online services provided by Career Services and helps link jobs and internships to York Students. Students can access cardinal careers by going to the Career Services page on the York College website. (The password for Cardinal Careers is separate from the one used to access campus computers and to sign up all you have to do is have your emplid on hand.)
According to Chesney, before students start searching and applying for jobs on Cardinal Careers there are some requirements that they must meet.
“Once a student sets up their password, then they have to upload their resume. However, they will not be able to look at jobs until their resume has been critiqued and it has been uploaded,” said Chesney. “And the reason for that is because we want the students resumes to look professional before they upload them and it is sent out.”
Along with Cardinal Careers students can also access Simplicity, which is a national database and management system used by several other CUNY schools that refines the jobs that students are looking for.
“So the jobs that they are looking at we refine them to be mostly in the Tri-state are or some key locations that we feel the student might be interested in,” said Chesney. “From there the companies can put their jobs on but, in most cases the jobs are submitted by the companies through a national database or a targeted database for the particular schools that they are interested in.”
Career Services has also recently started working closely with City University of New York (CUNY) Success Initiatives. According to Chesney, Success Initiatives is a university-wide program that connects a students academic development to career opportunities and development.
“It is clear that students are not here just for education but in the end for careers and if they have not obtained the soft skills or the hard skills necessary for what companies are requiring then we are doing them a disservice,” said Chesney. “So this is to try to get students to be more aware of what skills are required for employers.”
For students interested in Health Services they also offer a peer-to-peer program.
“We were granted funds to match students with peers in the health services areas because many students were coming here to the campus hoping to get into the professional programs that we have but, we just do not have enough seats,” said Chesney. “So they actually were given information by peers like themselves, other students that we hire to be trained in January and then they met with students to show them what some of the other career alternatives are.”
This year Career Services has helped to connect students to programs like the Thurgood Marshall Leadership Institute and various role model programs.
Recently 19 York students were chosen to participate in the annual New York Coalition of One Hundred Black Women Role Model Program that was held at L’Oréal’s New York headquarters.
The program, which was held from April 22 to April 25, allowed students to participate in various workshops and mentorship opportunities. At the end of the program two students from York were granted scholarships based on essays that they had submitted. One student received the highest amount, $2,000, and another received $1,000.
While the services provided are free it is important to note that there are requirements that students must meet before they are able to utilize the career services that they have to offer.
Students must attend an orientation, which is held every Tuesday from 12 p.m. to 1 p.m., where they will be given an overview of all the services as well as get a break down of the current opportunities, programs and resources that are available to students.
“It’s so that students know in advance what we have to offer, because too often they come for one thing or they come when they are going to graduate and they missed out on many of the opportunities,” said Chesney
Directly after the orientation is a required Resume Clinic, which is from 1 p.m. to 2 p.m., where students are required to bring in copies of their resumes.
“The resume clinic gives us the opportunity, because I have a very, very small staff, gives us an opportunity to speak to a lot of students on a regular basis and have them bring their hard copy resume in so that we can critique it,” said Chesney. “We are not here to do resumes, we are here to help students do resumes.”
The Career Resources Center is located in the Academic Core Building – 3M01. Students can also reach out to the office by emailing them at firstname.lastname@example.org