The offices of Student Leadership and Activities, and Career Services have joined forces to give Ferris State University students even better opportunities to develop the leadership characteristics future employers are seeking.
Reorganization of the two offices into the Center for Leadership, Activities and Career Services became official in May, when it opened in its temporary home in Helen Ferris Hall. It will be permanently located in the new University Center, slated for completion by December 2014.
“The decision was made to merge because we have noticed an increase in the importance of co-curricular activities and leadership in career success,” said Angela Roman, the center’s director. “The merge will help students understand how involvement will impact their career and will help them find opportunities to be involved.”
The reorganization streamlines services to provide a consistent message of leadership development and mentorship, said Dean of Student Life Leroy Wright. That includes promoting involvement in registered student organizations, volunteer work and campus activities, as well as assisting with career development.
“My rationale in combining the offices is that this provides the ultimate package,”
Wright said. “It promotes the idea of student engagement and leadership to provide
the skills needed to be marketable and competitive.”
Services have been divided into smaller centers within the larger office:
- The Career Center assists students with career planning, resume writing and interviewing,
plans Career Week activities and brings employers to campus to recruit.
- The Leadership Center manages RSOs and provides mentorship for event planning and
member development, provides leadership workshops, plans Leadership Week, coordinates
Greek life activities and approves new student organizations.
- The Volunteer Center posts volunteer opportunities, records student volunteer hours
and plans philanthropic events.
The center operates two software programs: Bulldog CareerLink connects students with job opportunities, and OrgSync helps RSOs manage their organizations and tracks students’ co-curricular participation to complement their academic transcript and resume.
The center also coordinates Bulldog Beginnings and Homecoming, advises Entertainment Unlimited (the campus programming board) and allocates funds from the Finance Division of Student Government.
New to the list of opportunities offered by the center is Leadership Week, Roman said.
“Similar to Career Week, this will serve as a way to gain larger recognition of the importance of building leaders on campus,” she said. “There will be all sorts of activities and workshops for students to spend a moment thinking about their leadership skills no matter what level they are at.”
The center’s location in Helen Ferris Hall also will prove beneficial, Roman said.
“We have a lounge area, resource areas, public computers, RSO mailboxes and more,” she said. “Our intention is this office is the place for students to come to when they want to find out what is happening around campus.”
The center is open from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. weekdays. An open house is planned for September.
Roman is working to hire an assistant director, a coordinator of Student Career Services and a coordinator of Student Leadership and Activities. The center also employs a Career Services assistant, Student Activities specialist and about 18 students, five of whom are professional trainees.
“This merger allows us to offer more high-quality programming and development opportunities for our students,” Roman said. “We are working closely with Academic Affairs to ensure what we are offering will help students use their classroom knowledge to be involved outside of the classroom.”