October 30, 2017
By Matt Fischer
Students and faculty gathered Monday for Evolving Expectations: Career Readiness, part of Housatonic’s 50th anniversary series presented by HCC Career Services Coordinator, Anisha Thomas.
The forum, which introduced career readiness strategies to students, also looked back at the evolution of HCC over the past fifty years to meet changing labor needs.
“Labor demands always push the need for a skilled work force,” Thomas said. “Which goes back into the curricula we teach. In 1967, HCC had less than 400 students and offered 10 degrees. Currently, HCC has over 5,000 students and 40 degree programs.”
Participants were tasked to come up with three ways in which college students can earn on-the-job training while still in school. One student-led group spoke to the audience on effectively maximizing down-time. “Time management should come first,” said HCC Student Rashea Brown. “Get your bills and schoolwork taken care of first then create a budget and make a plan for yourself.”
Students were urged to follow eight competencies created by the National Association of Colleges and Employers (NACE) which act as a road map to future employment. Critical thinking, oral communication, teamwork, digital technology, leadership, professionalism, career management and global perspective make up the eight competencies that NACE say employers are looking for when hiring college graduates.
“The college degree is just not enough for employers anymore.” Thomas said. “It’s important for students to engage outside of the classroom through student activities, internships and programs.” From career counseling to workshops and interviewing skills, help is always available at the Office of Career Services located at Beacon Hall 272. “As much as things have changed in the past fifty years it’s good to know we can prepare our students for the future.” Thomas said.
For more information on the Office of Career Services please go to http://www.housatonic.edu/student-services/career-services