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May 2, 2013

Students seek job opportunities

Career Services connects students with Cleveland organizations and employers

By Alberto Paneccasio

Many students are in need of a job this summer, whether it is in their career path or just a simple part-time job to generate money for the next school term. Students are encouraged to start the process by either visiting career services or going on-line to put your resume out there.

Summer is a great time for students at Cleveland State University to go out and look for an internship because there are many opportunities and work schedules are a bit more flexible.

Career Services is the place to get started by learning about the Ohio Means internship and co-op program through the state of Ohio. The University of Ohio Board of Regents granted several sums of money to increase the number co-ops and internships in the state. According to Yolanda Burt, director of Career Services, this is to help off-set the cost of those internships and to stimulate their growth.

Cleveland State University is working with partners such as Ohio Airspace Institute, OEI, and Tri-C to get more students into this co-op program, which starts this summer, helping students get into the internship pipeline.

Career Services organized an Engaged Learning Internship Network Kick-off Breakfast on April 25 to launch the program. The breakfast meeting was attended by Byron P. White, vice president for University Engagement, President Ronald M. Berkman, company representatives and students.

The purpose of the meeting was to inform potential employers in the Northeast Ohio area such as MVP Plastics, Ben Venue, ABB, Mid-American Consulting and others that Cleveland State students are ready and prepared to walk into their summer internships.
Although the program is primarily targeted at employers of STEM majors, organizations such as Ben Venue are looking for students in other majors such as business and communication.

This is a state of Ohio supported program and the employers will be reimbursed a third of the student stipend.

“This is exciting,” Burt said.

The program kicks off this summer. To further strengthen the program other partners such as Fin Foundation, Greater Cleveland partnership, the President’s council and other entities are being approached for the fall semester.

“If this is a student’s first internship this summer then it puts them right in sequence for the continuation co-op program of engineering, for instance,” Burt said.

In addition, some departments have launched similar programs. For example, the department of computer and information sciences (CIS) launched a co-op program during the 2013 Spring semester.

Career Services and Cleveland State both believe in growing the workforce and stimulating the economy. They want to encourage smaller businesses to take student interns rather than pass them up, but not to take away from the larger businesses. They can do both by working with Career Services.

Career Services wants students to work with them just as they are working with potential employers in the region.

One key point that Burt made was that, do not just stop at career services but also work with their faculty.

“Our goal is to develop our students working with a working resume when they finish school,” Burt said.

Talk to your professors, advisors, and mentor about your search and ask them to point you in the right direction for any resources available at Cleveland State, such as databases or aggregate lists of STEM internships, advises Karen Purcell, president and founder of PK Electrical.

Internships are a great way to experience the work environment and explore different options within your discipline of study. Internships provide students at Cleveland State with wonderful on-the-job training, and usually lead to a job offer after graduation.

“My professor said that if I do not get an internship, I would never get a job in the field I wanted to, and I didn’t know that,” said Scott Ferguson, senior Advertising Major at Cleveland State.