Chaifetz School Career Resources Center Supports Graduates, Job Seekers
Graduating from college and starting a career can be daunting in even the best of times, but for 2020 graduates, the ongoing threat of COVID-19 can make the job search even more challenging. Some students have reported instances of rescinded internship offers or hiring freezes, and troubling economic reports have much of the country on edge. But there’s still hope.
According to Barb Gradala, director of the Chaifetz School’s Valerie A. Davisson Career Resources Center (CRC), “the jobs are still out there.” Gradala wants students and recent graduates to know that opportunities are available--the CRC has heard from employers who want to make sure SLU students know they are still hiring.
“While the pandemic has limited certain industries, it’s also created new opportunities in others,” Gradala said. “Employers are looking for nimble, adaptable people that can adjust to new working environments and responsibilities.”
Gradala says the CRC is actively reaching out to employers and alumni who might be successful in helping students and recent graduates find internships or full-time employment. In addition to their current work, the CRC is planning virtual career events for the fall to provide students and employers flexibility in job searching and hiring. Gradala is grateful for the time to prepare; everything the CRC has done this spring semester had to be planned on extremely short notice.
“This is an important time for students to utilize the resources available to them,” Gradala said. “There are significant resources at SLU and the CRC, and it’s a great time to utilize our alumni base. There are multiple ways to connect to this network, and we can facilitate that.”
SLU’s recent graduates should also be encouraged by the fact that many of their peers have found employment. SLU students remain in high demand, both in the St. Louis area and beyond.
Grace Marker, a 2020 Chaifetz School graduate who majored in information technology management, will be moving to Chicago to begin her career as an IT test engineer with Blue Cross/Blue Shield. Marker interned with FleishmanHillard and RSM while a student at SLU, and credits her success to her “passionate professors” who have given her “a lifelong curiosity.” Other students have reported recent employment at companies like Ernst & Young, IMG Financial Group and Maritz Motivation, among others.
Recent graduate Jackson Jones has chosen to further his education. Jones, who double-majored in sports business and HR management, will attend law school at Washington University this fall. Others are also headed to law school, medical school or plan to stay at SLU to pursue a graduate degree in business.
For service-oriented students, options are plentiful: Gabriella Bianchi, a marketing and international business double-major, will spend the next year serving in Anchorage, AK with the Jesuit Volunteer Corps (JVC).
Many volunteer organizations, including JVC, AmeriCorps and Peace Corps, have rolling admissions or accept late applicants. These organizations remain good options for students who want to give back or simply find themselves wondering what to do after graduation. Year-long volunteer programs teach participants perseverance and grit, as well as offer valuable job and networking experience. Many provide financial benefits for volunteers who choose to attend graduate school, and the Chaifetz School now offers the Ignatian Service Fellowship for former volunteers who apply to the One-Year MBA program.
Everyone at the Chaifetz School and in the broader SLU community are dedicated to assisting students and alumni however possible. Students and alums who wish to access SLU’s career resources may contact firstname.lastname@example.org or click the link below for more information. The CRC is offering plenty of resources to aid current students and recent graduates: weekly webinars offered through Handshake, a weekly job search support lounge, virtual appointments with CRC staff and additional assistance for students whose internships or job offers have been rescinded.
No matter what path our students and recent graduates choose, they should know that their futures remain open, and their options diverse.