By Reilly Wright, Managing Editor
Ohio Wesleyan University’s Office of Career Services, once part of the Division of Student Affairs, shifted to the Division of University Advancement on Wednesday, Jan. 10, 2018.
The Division of University Advancement primarily handles engaging OWU alumni, families and friends through significant networking, volunteer involvement and financial support. This move means Career Services will be more closely intertwined with alumni, allowing OWU students to have greater access to alumni and any opportunities they offer.
“The shift occurred to provide greater access, career-related programming and experiential opportunities for students,” Director of Career Services Leslie Melton said.
Colleen Garland, the Vice President for University Advancement, says alumni are one of the greatest assets Ohio Wesleyan students have for internships, career mentoring and eventual job placement.
“Housing Career Services within Advancement strengthens opportunities for students by connecting them with successful alumni willing and eager to assist with student career development,” Garland said.
By restructuring this department association toward alumni relations, Ohio Wesleyan is joining a common trend that other institutions like Amherst College (MA) and Colgate University (NY) have done.
“It is increasingly common for Career Services to align with Alumni Relations and University Advancement at institutions like Ohio Wesleyan,” said President Rock Jones. “This allows for greater partnerships with alumni in providing externships and internships, in mentoring students in preparation for work after college and even in leading to employment opportunities.”
Originally, Career Services was part of Student Affairs, which handles supporting students in engagement, resources, opportunities and involvement. Student Affairs currently holds a variety of departments including Counseling Services, Student Conduct, Residential Life and Public Safety.
The Office of Career Services provides individual counseling for students regarding career plans and development, job searches, and networking. The department is comprised of four employees and multiple OWU student interns on the second floor of Hamilton-Williams Campus Center.
“We are still working to determine [changes] however, in the meantime, neither students nor staff will notice any major changes until the office has fully integrated into the [new] division and determined opportunities for advancement,” Melton said.