Whether the next step is a career or four-year university, Naugatuck Valley Community College is invested in the future success of its students. To provide students with the information they need to make informed decisions about their paths in life, the College recently hosted a pair of successful events to help answer the question, “What’s next?”
Job and Career Fair
NVCC’s Job Placement Center hosted nearly 70 employers for its annual Job and Career Fair in Café West and the Prism Lounge on Tuesday, March 31. More than 400 students met with employers in fields ranging from telecommunications and financial services to healthcare and retail.
“We start recruiting employers way back in the fall,” said Mary Ann Fontaine, director of NVCC’s Job Placement Center. “We received a lot of early registrations from employers and then at the end we had a flurry.” As the economy improves, Fontaine says she is seeing more job openings, more employers interested in attending job fairs and more students reporting that they are receiving interviews.
Fontaine’s advice for jobseekers: approach your search as a full-time job and do your research. She says it’s important to know your target industries and employers. Then, she says, research them, so if you’re invited for an interview you can wow them with your knowledge. “Go to their websites, be on LinkedIn, network with people in your target industry, read trade publications, have a 30- to 60-second elevator speech and a well-crafted resume,” Fontaine advises.
NVCC’s Job Placement Center is available to help students and alumni explore careers, meet employers, network and develop an action plan. “Everyone has doubts about getting that first job,” says Fontaine. One of our biggest jobs here is building students’ confidence.”
More than 40 colleges and universities from across Connecticut and beyond were represented at NVCC’s College Transfer Fair in Café West on April 1. The event, held every spring and fall semester, is organized by the College’s Center for Academic Planning & Student Success (CAPSS).
“The fair is designed to help students think ahead about where they are going after graduating from Naugatuck Valley,” says CAPSS Transfer Counselor Terry Latella. “NVCC grads are in demand.” Latella urges students who are seeking to transfer to a four-year institution to ask about price, financial aid, scholarships and how well academic and extracurricular programs align with their interests.
Latella says CAPSS staff is always available to assist students with questions about the next step in their educational careers.
Some 400 students attended the fair, including Ashleigh Morelli, who expects to graduate in 2016 and pursue a career as a high school math teacher. Morelli says she attended to the fair at the suggestion of her advisor. She is particularly interested in continuing on to a Connecticut State University. “State schools offer exactly what I want.”
“The whole point of going to college for me is to become a guidance counselor,” says Joseph Luchene, a student at NVCC who is scheduled to graduate this May. Luchene, who discussed his transfer options with a representative from Central Connecticut State University, says he hopes to earn his master’s degree and work as a middle school guidance counselor. He’s confident that he could serve as a positive male role model for students.
The Connecticut State Universities (CSU) and the Connecticut Community Colleges have developed a Transfer Compact which offers Dual Admission. The Dual Admission program is designed for students who plan to earn an associate’s degree from one of Connecticut’s 12 public community colleges (within five years); plan to pursue a bachelor’s degree at Central, Eastern, Southern or Western Connecticut State University or Charter Oak State College, beginning within two years of earning an associate’s degree; or have earned 15 or fewer transferrable credits at a community college at the time of application.