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WVU Tech Career Services Welcomes New Director, Launches Packed Spring Schedule

WVU Tech’s graduates are known for their workplace readiness, and a major driver of that reputation is the University’s Career Services Office.

The office offers WVU Tech students a wide range of services, including career counseling and coaching, resume and cover letter review, interviewing skill workshops, internship and co-op placement, full-time employment search assistance, job fairs and other career-related events.

And if you’re noticing a big jump in career services activities on campus this semester, it’s no coincidence. It’s the work of Candice Stadler, WVU Tech’s new Director of Career Services.

Meet the Director
WVU Tech Career Services’ new director, Candice Stadler.WVU Tech Career Services’ new director, Candice Stadler.

Stadler grew up in Pinch, West Virginia, and brings with her more than a decade of experience in student affairs, academic advising, student leadership, career services and workforce development at higher education institutions in West Virginia and Colorado.

Before coming to Tech, Stadler served as the director of career services at New River Community and Technical College in Beckley, West Virginia. She also previously served as president of the West Virginia Association of Student Personnel Administrators, where she was actively involved in the student affairs community on a statewide level. A believer in lifelong learning, Stadler is also pursuing her Doctor of Education degree in educational leadership.

A first-generation college student, Stadler said she found her passion for helping students navigate college life while working as a graduate assistant and earning her master’s degree in human resource management. She said she’s followed that passion in her career ever since.

“In all my positions, I have worked directly with students to assist them in identifying their career goals; preparing career related materials such as resumes and personal statements; organizing and facilitating career fairs and other events; and developing relationships with employers,” she said. “Improving the lives and communities of West Virginia is very important to me.”

In her new role at WVU Tech, Stadler said she plans to build a powerful suite of programs and events for WVU Tech’s students – a place where they can go for everything they need to put their degrees to work.

“Ultimately, my goal is to create a world-class career services office that will assist WVU Tech students in securing internships, co-ops, post-graduation employment and acceptance to graduate school,” she said. “That will include career counseling, coaching, employment services, assistance in applying to graduate school and opportunities to build career readiness skills.”

Springing into action

Stadler has wasted no time building out new programming for WVU Tech’s students. The department has already packed the spring 2016 semester with seminars and career fairs.

Workshop Wednesdays will keep students career-focused throughout the semester.

She’s created a series of Workshop Wednesdays designed to give students an edge in everything from resume building and social networking to how to dress for an interview.

“The overall goal in Workshop Wednesdays is to provide students with an opportunity to gain career information and prepare to apply for internships and co-ops; summer employment or a full time job, Stadler said. “The goal is to make WVU Tech students as prepared as possible for the world of work.”

The series kicked off on January 20 with a boot camp for students interested in attending the department’s upcoming Nursing and Health Sciences Career Fair. The boot camp taught attendees tips for engaging employers and how to follow up on job leads.

In the months ahead, Stadler will host the following Workshop Wednesday sessions (each session begins at noon in the Student Success Center):

February 3 – Help! How do I find an internship or co-op?

In many cases, students gain their first real-world working experience in internships and co-ops with area employers. This workshop will prepare students to find and land those coveted positions. The workshop will also cover the internship/co-op administrative processes for international students.

February 17 – JobFest Boot Camp

This boot camp will offer tips and advice to help students from all majors prepare for the March 15 campus-wide JobFest (read more below).

March 2 – Cover Letter and Resume Writing 101

The Cover Letter and Resume Writing 101 is designed as a basic intro, and Stadler said it’s a great opportunity both for students who have never written a resume or cover letter and for those who are looking to fine-tune their current job search materials.

March 30 – Interviewing and Professional Dress

For this session, Stadler has teamed up with professional recruiters from Enterprise Rent-a-Car, who will work with students to prepare them for the realities of the professional interview. Since students will be working with professional recruitment specialists, they’ll also have a chance to find out firsthand what recruiters are looking for in successful interview candidates.

April 13 – Professional Online Social Networking

Students understand the power of having a strong social network, and this workshop will show job-seeking students how they can use that network to land the perfect job. The session will cover the use of LinkedIn and how students can use social media in employment networking.

April 27 – Life After WVU Tech

Built with WVU Tech’s graduating seniors in mind, this workshop will cover some common concepts and processes graduates will need to understand in the working world: employment offers, retirement, healthcare, renter’s insurance and more.

In addition to Workshop Wednesdays, Career Services’ spring schedule marks two major job fairs designed to connect students with area employers.

The first is the  Nursing and Health Sciences Career Fair. Hosted in Orndorff Hall on Tuesday, February 16, the fair will connect students interested in nursing and health-related fields with employers and graduate programs in the region.

The second –  JobFest – will bring employers from a wide range of organizations and industries to the WVU Tech Ballroom on Tuesday, March 15. JobFest is the biggest WVU Tech career fair of the year and is open to all students. The event allows students to connect with regional employers who are offering full-time and seasonal employment, internship/co-op and volunteer opportunities. The fair is also a chance for students not actively seeking work to gain valuable job-hunting practice and see the types of opportunities available to them.

More in store for Career Services

Stadler said that Workshop Wednesdays are just the beginning for WVU Tech Career Services, and that she’s currently working on a number of projects to connect students with job-hunting resources, areas employers and WVU Tech alumni already working in their fields.

The Office is partnering with WVU’s Career Center in Morgantown to give Tech students access to the University’s vast career resources. Together, the two offices are replacing the old Experience job portal with a new career management platform and launching a set of job search and career assessment tools, known as Career Shift and Focus2, respectively. Stadler said that links to these resources will be available on the Career Services website in the coming weeks.

Stadler also stressed the importance of alumni in the career development process, and reminds graduates that WVU Tech’s career services are for alumni, too. She said she’s interested in working with alumni as career mentors and as employers.

“It has been exciting to talk with so many WVU Tech alumni that want to be engaged with our students,” she said. “I have talked to numerous Tech alums that want to hire students as interns, co-ops or for full-time employment. Long term, I would like to create an alumni career mentoring program or professionalism institute for students.”

All told, it’s shaping up to be a busy year for Career Services at WVU Tech.

For Stadler, that’s welcome news.

“I am very happy to be a part of the WVU Tech family and I am excited for the things to come,” she said.

Keep up with Career Services on  Facebook and  Twitter, and be sure to visit the department’s  website for more information.