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Improving connections between Memorial and employers

By Moira Finn

Ties to the business community are well entrenched in the Faculty of Business Administration, thanks to a strong alumni network, advisory board, associates program and co-operative education.

Now, a number of new initiatives developed by the faculty will further enhance connections between today's students and leading employers.

Beginning this autumn, the Faculty of Business Administration is launching three pilot projects to help employers gain a better understanding of the skills and expertise of current students and graduates.

An e-resumé book – a password-protected online resource containing resumés provided by students and graduates – is the first of the faculty's career enhancement series. It will be accessible to leading employers, including faculty
advisory board and associates program members.

"This service is beneficial for our students and alumni and for employers, helping to match the human resources needs of businesses with the skills and abilities of Faculty of Business Administration graduates," explained Meghan Mitchell, career development co-ordinator, Faculty of Business Administration.

"In addition to their education credentials, business students have a host of experiences, including involvement in case competitions, co-op placements and volunteer work, that help make them excellent candidates for having careers in this province. We want to showcase the breadth of the talent we have here."
In addition to the launch of the e-resumé book, the faculty is starting a mentoring program that will connect third- and fourth-year bachelor of business administration and international bachelor of business administration program students with mentors in the business community.

"Our commerce, master of business administration and master of employment relations students have the advantage of work placements or work experience. Through this new mentorship program, we hope to give students in our other business degree programs the advantage of connecting with people working in their field," said Ms. Mitchell, whose position is shared between the faculty and Career Development and Experiential Learning. The career development co-ordinator role is one of three co-shared positions created in the Faculty of Business Administration and the Faculties of Arts and Science to help enhance student job placement.

The faculty's third career enhancement project is a job shadowing event that is closely linked to the mentoring program. Planned for next semester, job shadowing will see bachelor of business administration and international bachelor of business administration students work alongside mentors in the workplace to improve their understanding of careers, the work environment and emerging opportunities in the business, government and not-for-profit sectors.

Dr. Wilfred Zerbe, dean of the Faculty of Business Administration, says these projects are the latest examples of how the faculty strives to help students transition from university life to employment.

"We take very seriously our responsibility to deliver the skills and knowledge that employers most need today. We also want to ensure that students are prepared to not only make a contribution but to innovate and to be leaders so that in due course they will mentor others," he said. "By bringing students and employers closer together, these projects help to minimize the time it takes students to find gainful and rewarding employment and provides business leaders with a better understanding of just how capable our students are."

For more information on the Faculty of Business Administration's career program, please contact Meghan Mitchell at mmitchell@mun.ca or 709-864-7279.

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