Created by: Katie Smith, 2012-2013 Career Advising Fellow
No worries, friends and colleagues, we’re keeping busy! When we first started in July, one of my main goals was to improve my presentation skills. Believe me, they’re improving. Yesterday I gave 6 hours of back-to-back presentations to my Transitions Strategies class, to two Business Communications classes, and to a group of RAs. We’ll be experts in no time.
You may have asked yourself, “What’s a Transitions Strategies class?” Good question!
Transitions Strategies (TS) classes are 1-credit courses aimed to provide support for students thinking about their next steps after Elon University. TS classes address topics such as identifying career interests, aptitudes, and goals, developing professional documents such as resumes and cover letters, preparing for interviews, networking techniques, and more. These courses are still new and developing; there are 12 sections of TS courses on various topics offered this Fall. While some TS classes are general in nature, others have themes such as financial literacy or working abroad, and others are major-specific.
Our primary role for the TS classes is to support faculty members in major-specific courses. Mikki has been working throughout the semester with Psychology faculty member Dr. Katie King, while I have been working with Dr. Michele Kleckner, a faculty member in the Computer Science Department. Within our respective classes, Mikki and I lead career-related presentations and discussions, material that is supplemented by field-specific knowledge from our collaborating faculty members.
As an example, for this week’s class I presented on social media, online presence, and strategies for self-marketing. I also led a networking activity to illustrate connections within the room and taught students how to use online resources such as LinkedIn and the Elon Mentor Network to connect with people within their fields of interests. As an assignment, students will reach out to an individual who they find from these sources and conduct an informational interview.
The TS classes are yet another unique aspect to the Elon experience. Not only do the classes give students a strong incentive to work towards achieving their career goals, they also give Mikki and I excellent experience in presenting on a variety of topics and working with students over a sustained period, while learning more about different fields.