When you visit the first floor of Benton Hall, you might hear the sounds of foot traffic, running printers, laughter, and brewing coffee. These subtle sounds echo from the employer relations (ER) suite, the Career Services team dedicated to connecting employers with Colgate University students.
The work done here helps students explore career paths by developing long-standing relationships with alumni in a variety of professional fields. Jobs and internships brought in by the team are featured on Handshake and sent to students in Career Services weekly emails. This is one of the primary ways that students may benefit from the Colgate network.
“We act as an advocate for students,” says Nolan Snyder, assistant director of ER operations.
Discovering your career path takes a balance of interests, academics, and exploring fields. The job market can be competitive, but there are dedicated Colgate alumni excited to open doors for students. The Colgate Premier recruiting program is how Career Services leverages these relationships and how students can take advantage of being a member of the Colgate community.
“We partner with nearly 200 employers from a diverse range of industries every year to bring jobs and internships to students, most of which are connected to Colgate alumni,” Nolan explains. “These employers understand the value of Colgate’s liberal arts education and specifically seek the qualities it provides the University’s students.”
“We invest a great amount of time and human capital in managing relationships with external partners who support our students,” adds Aaron Bushey-Hansen, assistant director of employer relations.
The team focuses on the many facets of the job-search experience, dividing responsibilities between operations and outreach. Shannon Enders, assistant director of employer relations, enjoys the problem-solving aspect of finding employers and delivering opportunities to the students effectively and equitably. She works to have a positive influence on the lives of students.
“Much of what we do is maintaining relationships with our employers — whether alumni, recruiters, or company owners,” she explains. “Each organization is unique, and we find ways to support their recruiting objectives while presenting some wonderful opportunities to students. Each employer has a unique approach to recruiting and how they recruit to Colgate specifically. It’s about finding what works for them and being able to deliver that information and opportunities to students.”
Aaron further highlights the importance of organization in such an endeavor, especially when seeking employers.
“It’s a pretty complex process to navigate,” he shares. “Our approach combines thinking strategically about the types of opportunities Colgate students are interested in pursuing and what companies or opportunities may inspire a different kind of career exploration while leveraging relationships with employers and alumni that historically recruit our students. We’re always looking to connect Colgate students with wonderful opportunities that will support their journey on the hill and after they depart campus.”
There are many resources available to students at Career Services, and preliminary steps can be taken to begin building a relationship with the office if students have not already done so.
“Activate your Handshake account and fill out your career interests,” recommends Nolan. “The more we know about what employers and industries interest you, the more we can offer opportunities that are relevant to where you want to go in your career.”
Employer Relations Team
Aaron Bushey-Hansen, Assistant Director of ER; Shannon Enders, Assistant Director of ER; Teresa Olsen, AVP of Career Initiatives; Amanda Pike, Administrative Assistant of ER; Nolan Snyder, Assistant Director of ER Operations; Keith Watkins, ER Assistant.