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GPP Wants You

Erin Dougherty, Multimedia Editor

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The Guaranteed Placement Program  is evolving, and it is interested in student feedback to ensure the program meets their needs.

According to Carolyn Yencharis Corcoran, Assistant Director at the Career Development Center said the program makes changes according to students’ feedback.

“We reevaluate the program every once and awhile, and just went through a big revaluation this last year. Focus groups are conducted with students, and we want to hear from the students and from the employers.”

The Career Center also uses an Advisory Council of Employers to ensure the content is up-to-date and catering students, she said.

“We, as a department are very passionate about being in constant communication with our employers and always improving this program.”

The GPP is a career development program designed to aid in a student’s education, focusing on professional development and growth. The GPP is unique to  the university, and it welcomes all students to participate. The program is designed to prepare students looking to enter the workforce or graduate school after graduation and is facilitated through workshops and individual meetings with the Center for Career Development.

The GPP is possible because of The Insalaco Center for Career Development, which assists students and alumni in developing, assessing and implementing goals for their future in the professional world.

 “The Insalaco Center cooperates with students, alumni, faculty, staff, employers, and the community to turn educational achievements into a lifetime of career satisfaction,” said Yencharis Corcoran.

Established by the previous president, Dr. Michael MacDowell, the program continues to change.

The GPP is structured accordingly for all class levels with each year building on the next. Students fulfill basic career development requirements in their freshman and sophomore years. Junior year addresses financial fitness and how to search for a job. In the final semesters, the program requirements increase as students begin to focus on skills appropriate to the job searching and interviewing process, including resume and cover letter development, interview skills and mock interviews with a ‘real’ employers, professional etiquette, job fairs, and the job search.

“We want students to have an up-to-date resume and cover letter, so if they are applying for an internship or a relevant summer position, they will have that ready. It also gets them thinking. It allows students to step back and look at themselves on paper sophomore year to see where they really are, whether to motivate or participate more, get those grades or things of that nature,” Yencharis Corcoran said.

GPP requires students to attend one workshop per semester, attend at least one campus ethics event, participate in an internship or work experience and have a 3.0 GPA by graduation.

“Most majors have these requirements built right into their curriculum anyway so it’s not a strain on most students,” she said.

Kristen Byrne, occupational therapy major, said she believes her participation in the GPP will help her secure a job in the future.

“Attending the workshops is not just a requirement but [they are] so helpful for success. Specifically, the job search workshop helps students to narrow their options and show them websites and helpful tools in order to find jobs openings,” Byrne said.

Yencharis Corcoran said the GPP guarantee states that any student who fully participates in the program for all four years of their college experience and does not receive a job offer or is not accepted into graduate/professional school within six months of graduation will receive a paid internship in their chosen field.

Byrne  said she works in the Insalaco Center for Career Development as a Career Peer Assistant along with senior Nursing major Nicole Liebeknecht and junior Nursing major Monica Murray.

“We attend GPP workshops, send reminders and follow up emails for the GPP program, and edit student resumes.”

Byrne said that it’s not only rewarding to help other students; it is also good practice for them as they edit resumes and cover letters.

The Center for Career Development welcomes all students of all majors to discuss career goals and objectives.

“What a lot of students don’t know is that these workshops are not limited to students in the GPP. Any student at Misericordia can sign up for workshops and can use the services of the Insalaco Center for Career Development,” Byrne said.

The ICCD can also provide research help on specific graduate school programs of interest, identify and discuss factors that might help to determine where to apply, determine if entrance exams are is required for admission, review resumes, cover letters and related materials, and prepare for graduate school interviews.

“As a student, in my opinion, I find this program very helpful. The workshops impart me with a lot of the professional wisdom needed to grow. There are many useful tips given in these workshops that will help me in my future career,” Byrne said.

Yencharis Corcoran agrees. “One of the ways I define the success in this program is that it gets students connected to the career center early on in their college career – something I didn’t have as a college student.”

She added that statistics back up the real value of the services. “The National Association of Colleges and Employers have statistics – the more contact you have with your career center the better chance you have of obtaining an offer of employment after graduation. This sort of puts that formula into play”

Yencharis Corcoran stressed that she wants all students to know that The Center for Career Development welcomes all majors and all are encouraged to join the program.

“Were not the GPP office. We are The Career Center and open to everyone for assistance, ” she said.

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GPP Wants You