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Career Centre Voice: University of Calgary’s Haskayne School of Business

“Every year, strong candidates miss fall recruitment because students are more focused on their studies and extracurricular activities than finding a job for eight months down the road.”

Kathleen McConnell, Haskayne School of Business Career Centre, University of Calgary

The University of Calgary Haskayne School of Business Career Centre has many programs and services to help students get a job.

But preparing for a career is so much more than landing that first job.

In terms of career preparation, we support students with:

Mentorship program: We match 160-200 students with business mentors from 100 different companies

CareerLeader®: An online assessment tool that provides a detailed report on the best business career path options that align with each student’s interests, values and skills and his/her preferences for organizational culture

One-on-one consulting: We speak with students individually to identify her/his key ingredients for career success

Sharing stories: Alumni or other supporters share their life stories and “day in the life” experiences with students at events and in online videos

What’s the one lesson you’d like to share with students?

Do not discount an employer just because you don’t know what they do or because you don’t recognize their brand. The most important thing is that you find a job that is a good fit for you.

There are lots of very interesting, challenging and rewarding careers in industries and areas that are in high demand but with organizations not recognized by many business students. Break out of the box of what you ‘should do’ and consider some of those other options. There are employers out there who would be thrilled to find a candidate like you.

What’s the one lesson you’d like to share with employers?

Career centres are your most important resources on campus – use us. We know what approaches work for our students, what their schedules are like and how to get them to respond. We have ideas for new ways to reach out. Our goals are aligned with yours – we want you to hire the right candidates for your roles. So trust our advice and partner with us early and often. Things are changing quickly in on-campus recruitment and doing the same things you have always done may not be the best approach.

I would also like to encourage employers to consider the recruitment cycle from the student perspective. Many organizations run the risk of missing out on excellent candidates due inflexible recruiting schedules. Every year, strong candidates miss fall recruitment because, even though career centres try to prepare them, students are more focused on their studies and extracurricular activities than finding a job for eight months down the road.

Similarly, while your organization may have had success holding information sessions, during the first couple weeks of class, students may have an event to attend every night of the week. Cramming all your recruitment into a two month span in the fall isn’t the best strategy.  The best way to combat this is to make sure you are recruiting and engaging with students year round.

This Career Centre Voice belongs to:

Kathleen McConnell
Strategic Partner Relations
Mentorship Program Coordinator
Haskayne School of Business Career Centre
University of Calgary

Career centre? Contact us to contribute to Student Voice

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    Student Voice is an award-winning initiative to fight Gen Y under-employment by giving students and recent grads across Canada a platform to share your job hunting experiences, as well as your recommendations for employers.

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