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Shining Gems of IWU: Assets and Assistance Within Reach

Career Center Staff

The Hart Career Center staff, from left: Robyn Walter, staff counselor; Warren Kistner, director of the Hart Career Center; Laurie Diekhoff, assistant director of the Hart Career Center; Suzanne Noonan, senior office coordinator.

Hart Career Center Offers Preparation and Assistance for Career Planning

January 4, 2010

BLOOMINGTON, Ill. – Illinois Wesleyan’s Hart Career Center provides four main areas of support to assist students in planning for their futures. The Center, located in the Minor Myers, jr. Welcome Center (1211 Park St., Bloomington), offers aid in the areas of career guidance, internship planning, graduate and professional school preparation and job search assistance.

Career Guidance

For those who are still unsure of the path they would like to take, the Hart Career Center offers online and in-office assessments to guide students in the right direction. Throughout the academic school year, seminars and programs are held that focus on different careers to highlight options within a given field.

Career Center Library

Hart Career Center library and research center.

The Center also houses its own library filled with career information resources. The library is open for students to browse reference materials and learn more about career options available to them. According to Warren Kistner, director of the Hart Career Center, the Center provides students with the opportunity to schedule individual meetings with a staff member to discuss possible directions they might take in their future careers.

Internships

The Hart Career Center gives IWU students access to online databases that provide a wealth of information and connections for those searching for internships. “Internships are essential in today’s job market,” said Kistner. The most utilized program is the Titan CareerLink online job and internship database, according to Kistner. Illinois Wesleyan is also a part of the Illinois Small College Placement Association, which is an organization enacted to provide students from 25 small private colleges and universities with the opportunity to search for jobs and internships, post their resumes for interested employers to see, and learn about upcoming job and internship fairs or interview opportunities on other college campuses. “Forming this united association for small colleges like ourselves is very beneficial. Collectively, there are over 50,000 students who access this database. This number brings in more employers because they know their job or internship will reach a larger audience,” said Kistner.

Graduate & Professional School Preparation

Approximately one-third of Illinois Wesleyan students go on to professional or graduate schools according to Kistner. With this number in mind, the Hart Career Center works to ensure each student’s success. “We can help you research schools to find a program that’s best for you, and we review students’ essays for their applications,” said Kistner. In addition to hands-on assistance from the staff, there are also books available in the Center library covering how to be successful when applying to schools. In addition, Kaplan, a test preparation center, offers practice tests on campus for the Graduate Record Examination (GRE), Graduate Management Admission Test (GMAT), Law School Admission Test (LSAT), and Medical College Admission Test (MCAT) throughout the year.

Warren Kistner and Student

Warren Kistner, director of the Hart Career Center, counsels Dan Toldeo '09.

Job Search Assistance

The other three aspects focused on at the Center (career guidance, internship planning and graduate and professional school preparation) are set up to ultimately help to prepare students for the job search. “Finding a job is a four-year process, which is why we encourage students to come in for assistance early on in their college careers,” said Kistner. The Hart Career Center has established a mock interview program. This program is one that Kistner believes all students should use. Human Resources professionals are brought to campus to conduct taped interviews with students. The students are then given written, verbal, and visual feedback in the form of a DVD of the interview. This type of practice helps students to prepare for real life interviews, said Kistner.

Another program offered to assist with the job search is the Alumni Mentoring Database. This program is designed to provide students with access to over 300 alumni working in a variety of different fields. The student determines whom they want to reach out to, and then has a person to touch base with for any questions and to gather advice and tips for gaining a job in that person’s field. To assist students in finding job and internship opportunities, the Hart Career Center hosts an Internship Fair on Campus each fall and a Nursing Career Fair in January. Illinois Wesleyan also partners with Illinois State University for other career fairs throughout the year.

The Center has a new section on their Web site called The Insider. The Insider is a password-protected area of the center Web site available only to Illinois Wesleyan students and alumni. Once inside, students are granted access to VAULT, BRIDGE, Graduate Jobs, Environmental Career Opportunities, Internships USA, Career Search, and Human Services and Liberal Arts Career Weekly, all of which are sites that aid in the job and internship search process.

Illinois Wesleyan students and alumni can now access The Center on Facebook by searching for ‘Hart Career Center.’

In 2005, the Hart Career Center was named for Craig C. Hart, former president of the University’s Board of Trustees. Hart served as president of the board for 11 years. For additional information or to make an appointment, contact the Center at (309) 556-3071 or visit their Web site at www.iwu.edu/ccenter.

Contact: Kasey Evans ’12, (309) 556-3181