Every year the University spends more than $1 million funding the Career Planning and Placement Service. Administrators justify the expenditure, saying the office is an important resource for students trying to sort through the choices facing them after graduation. But some students have long complained that CPPS does not serve the entire student population. They say it focuses too heavily on careers in business and science and does not give enough help to graduates interested in other fields. Some students also say minorities and international students do not receive enough attention. CPPS director Patricia Rose said the office is well aware of the complaints and is working to expand its offerings and to reach out to a more diverse group of students. Every student deserves first-class career planning advice and should use the office's resources, said Assistant to the Vice Provost for University Life George Koval. Among CPPS best-known services are its resume books, which companies buy, and its "slots" in which students can drop resumes in hopes of being invited to an interview with a recruiter. Michelle Dyer, a 1990 College graduate who found a job at American Management Systems through CPPS, said many of her friends never used CPPS because they were not informed of the office's other programs. "There is a large percentage of the population that they [CPPS advisors] miss somehow," Dyer said. "People think the only kinds of jobs you can get through CPPS are investment banking or consulting." Rose said the office is trying to combat its image of catering only to students interested in the corporate world. "Every year students say to us, 'Why don't you have more ad agencies ]recruiting on campus[, why don't you have more TV stations, why don't you have more social change organizations?'" Rose said. "The answer is those organizations . . . don't recruit on any campuses." But Rose said CPPS has other ways to put students in touch with employers in those types of fields. Each year, CPPS runs a not-for-profit career day when students can meet people working in not-for-profit organizations. It also has a resume book for teaching positions in private schools. And the office is working to expand job listings for fields such as publishing and communications, Rose said. "You have to network yourself into a job [for those fields]," Rose explained. "That's how most people get jobs. Most people don't just drop their resumes in little boxes and get interviews and offers. That's not what job hunting is all about." Rose said CPPS is also trying to help minority and international students who might not know about the service. "We want everyone to feel comfortable coming into this office and to leave feeling like they got what they wanted," Rose said. Rose encouraged students to voice any concerns about CPPS with any of the staffers or directly with her. The CPPS director said students who do not use the service are missing out on valuable advice and may consequently run into difficulties. "We certainly have more experience with the problems that arise than any individual student," Rose said. "Students get themselves into trouble when they're pressured to accept a job before they're ready to do so. Sometimes they meet with sexual harrassment, religious harrassment or racial harassment in the course of a job hunt." Other students who tend not to take advantage of the office, Rose said, are those who are unsure of their post-graduation plans. "By setting foot in this office, you are going down the road to the future and that's scary," Rose said. "You do not have to know what you want to do to come in here. Most of our students have very good prospects, but they need to think about it in a logical way and spend a little time investigating the opportunities the world presents. We can help them do both things, but they have to walk in the door." And Rose stressed that students who know they want to attend graduate and professional schools need to use the service, too. "You need to have a set of reccomendations on file," Rose said. "You can't expect faculty members to write 12 individual letters to 12 individual schools. It's also an insurance policy for students who have any interest in graduate or professional schools." CPPS orientations take place all year round, but anyone can walk in at any time for advice, Rose added. But the CPPS head warned that "if you wake up as a senior and its May 1, you've probably missed a lot of what we do."Comments powered by Disqus
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