A newsletter-style blog we'll be publishing every second Wednesday of the month. In the Memo, you'll find practical advice and best practices for using your uConnect platform, inspiration from other partner schools, news from the uConnect community, and more!
Indiana University College of Arts and Sciences, who partnered with uConnect nearly 3 years ago, recognized a major trend in in the way young adults like to consume media and set out producing a career development podcast. Podcasts began their meteoric rise in popularity in 2015. In 2017, an estimated 67 million Americans listened to podcasts, and the medium is most popular among people between the ages of 18 and 34: the Millenials and Gen Zers we all want to reach. Podcasts don’t seem to be losing favor anytime soon, or at least Spotify doesn’t think so, having just spent hundreds of millions to acquire two podcast production companies, and revealing plans to buy more.
‘All Careers Considered,’ Indiana’s new career development podcast presented on their uConnect platform, is the brainchild of Maria Cambone, Career Coach at the College of Arts and Sciences’ Walter Center for Career Advancement. Earlier this month, we sat down with Maria to get the story:
“I first came across the idea of using a podcast to reach students for the purpose of career development through a project that Longwood University’s career center is doing, the Day After Graduation Podcast. Since one of the Walter Center for Career Achievement’s goals is to provide more 24/7 interactive career resources and to increase student engagement with our office through digital platforms, I thought that a podcast might be a great place to begin.
I began by listening to as many career podcasts as I could find, to get a feel for what’s already out there, what I like, what I dislike, and what I think students might benefit from the most. I recently wrote a LinkedIn article, 18 Best Career Podcasts for Young Professionals, about the podcasts which helped me create All Careers Considered the most. Through this fact-finding, I determined that students are really interested in hearing interviews with employers in industries that interest them about how to be competitive applicants for internships and jobs. I also decided on a format that would suit the needs of IU students, and my personal style.
Additionally, during the Fall 2018 semester, our office conducted an assessment to learn, among other things, what information students wanted more readily accessible in a digital format. Their response: career fair preparation. Taking what I had learned about career podcasts, I met with the Walter Center leadership team in November 2018 to pitch to them that we create a podcast. We would start small, with nine 5-minute micro-episodes about how to get ready for the career fair, to generate awareness of the podcast and to learn from any of our early mistakes. My teammate, Maureen Langley, and I rolled these micro-episodes out starting on January 7 every other school day leading up to the Winter 2018 Career Fair on January 23.
We aren’t finished here, though. Next, we’re moving into creating longer-form content – think 15-20 minutes, short enough to listen to on the walk to class – that tells stories about how alumni achieved their career goals. We’re also going to feature recruiters in “hot seat” style interviews with our student interns, who will pretend to grill them about the truth of working or interning for their organization. Finally, we’ll feature stories from current students who had unique or off-the-beaten-path internships or work experiences: what they did, how they found or created the opportunity, what they learned, and where they want to go next. I hope to put as much of these interviews into student hands as possible, with me moving away from the mic to let students lead the conversations for and with their peers.”
→ Indiana College of Arts and Sciences isn’t the only uConnect school presenting audio content on their platform! Check out Wentworth Institute of Technology’s ‘WITworks Radio’ here!
Want to learn how to upload your own audio files to uConnect? Find out here!
One of our primary goals at uConnect is to help our institutional partners (you!) efficiently and effectively move from a service model to a community model of career services. If you want to learn more about what we mean by a community model of career services, check out this piece. But in a nutshell, in the community model, career services expands to be an institutional priority rather than simply a departmental one. The entire campus community is engaged in the career development of students, and the career center serves as a hub for this activity rather than its sole source. The community model encourages students to engage early and often with career exploration, meaning that they are more prepared to succeed upon graduation. Importantly, a community model of career services is also much more scalable: career services staff members, vastly outnumbered by the students to whom they must provide high-touch and customized support, are no longer the only people on campus responsible for the career advancement of an entire student body.
By implementing uConnect, you and your team have already made huge progress in the transition from a service model to a community model. But the journey isn’t over yet. Here a few ways we can support your forward progress:
1. Launch Package
For those of you who were onboarded prior to the summer of 2018: upon completion of onboarding, we have provided to each new uConnect school a custom ‘Launch Package’ with information and resources designed to help you spread the word about the platform and engage the campus community in your work. If didn’t receive a custom Launch Package at the end of onboarding and would like one, just send us a message at firstname.lastname@example.org and we’d be more than happy to make one for you!
2. Stakeholder Event
One of the most surefire ways to get your community excited about and involved in the awesome work you’re doing is to get everyone in a room together and share the vision. To help make that happen, uConnect will co-host and sponsor a Stakeholder Event. Invite your important campus stakeholders and contributors, such as faculty, staff, and student leaders. We’ll deliver a short presentation and provide food! Please note that this particular event is not designed for the general student body. Drop us a line if you’re interested!
3. #CareerEverywhere Events
To sum up the idea of a community model of career services, we came up with the hashtag #CareerEverywhere. #CareerEverywhere is also the name of an awesome series of both in-person events and webinars we’ve launched. An easy, travel-free and cost-free way to get involved is to join us on February 26th at 1:00 PM EST for ‘Making Career Mission Critical,’ a webinar with uConnect partner Monica Clem, Executive Director of Career and Experiential Learning at Edinboro University. Sign up here! And keep your eye out -- we’ll be announcing the details of our next in-person #CareerEverywhere event soon.
Welcome to the newest members of the uConnect community! Great things are ahead.
- Aquinas College
- Ohio University
The following partner schools are having their uConnect birthdays (aka anniversary of platform launch, but more fun).
Happy 6th Birthday to:
Happy 1st Birthday to:
Check out articles published over the past month and get in the know!
- Upload and publish audio files
- Unsubscribing from auto alerts/custom alerts