Career Services Joins Development and Alumni Engagement
To build on existing synergies, Career Services moved under the Division for Development and Alumni Engagement. The move streamlines all of the functions that support alumni-student connections, alumni-hosted site visits, career fairs, employer relations and professional development for alumni.
President Deborah F. Stanley timed this move to coincide with the departure of a few senior leaders on campus, as that presented an opportunity to reassess programs and reporting structures.
“This change seeks to build upon the synergies and joint programs that were already unfolding between Career Services and our Alumni Engagement and Corporations and Foundations areas,” said Mary Gibbons Canale ’81, vice president for development and alumni engagement. “The most recent example of our successful collaboration can be seen in our award-winning Imagine 2021 program, which proved to be very helpful for our students and a great way to engage our alumni, too. The merger will augment that success with a closer alignment of alumni and corporate engagement with career services.”
The eight-member team is headed by Career Services Director Gary Morris ’88, who now reports to Jennifer Hill, executive director of career services, corporate and foundation relations.
“This model is extremely rare across the country and is singularly unique within SUNY,” Morris said. “This is no surprise, as both areas are often at the forefront of their fields and serving as a role model for other institutions to follow. SUNY Oswego is there for our students during their important college years and for the rest of their lives. Further integrating career assistance, alumni engagement and employer relations will allow us to scale this work up in very meaningful ways.”
The merger supports the college mission of empowering every person in the college community to pursue a meaningful life as a productive, responsible member of society. Many students enroll in college with the primary purpose of identifying and landing their dream careers, so strengthening the relationship between working alumni and current students provides students with mentors and internship hosts who have walked in their shoes, can share advice and can help students find their callings. By better supporting them, we more completely fulfill our mission as an educational institution.
“There is a strong circle of life concept that takes place for our students,” Morris said. “They have an amazing experience at Oswego, become valued alumni, and then give back to current students with their time, experience and wisdom.”
As the change takes effect, the expanded division will become a one-stop shop for employer relations, serving as the initial college contact for corporations and foundations for such areas as internship/co-op experiences, corporate-campus research projects, employee recruitment, employee education, advisory board membership, sponsorship and philanthropy.
“The joining of Career Services with the teams in Development and Alumni Engagement will create a division perfectly aligned to meet the needs of our students, alumni and external partners in a more comprehensive and collaborative way,” Hill said. “This is a new and unique way to bridge the work done by Career Services, Alumni Engagement and Development. This new division will be a hallmark for other institutions, particularly liberal arts campuses who remain siloed, to see how such a collaborative environment can grow all of the work for the best possible outcomes for the students, alumni and institution.”
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