Brandywine students take a 'slice' of career mentorship

Penn State Brandywine career services

Jane Barry DePaul of Penn State Brandywine's Office of Advising and Career Services gives students employment tips during the campus' “Advice and a Slice” event. 

Credit: Michael McDade

MEDIA, Pa. — Many college students are familiar with the typical career fair model — show up, dress nicely, bring your résumé and prepare to network. But what happens after the event?

According to Christine Allen, coordinator of career services at Penn State Brandywine, many students still need some guidance after taking their first steps toward a job or internship.

“We’ve learned through past conversations that many students are generally not aware of how to follow up after a career fair connection,” said Allen. “It’s disheartening not to have heard back from anyone after giving your résumé to numerous employers.”

In response, Allen and Brandywine’s Office of Advising and Career Services launched a new event for campus career fair attendees — an activity aimed at teaching students how to follow up responsibly with a potential employer.

The event, called “Advice and a Slice,” invited career fair attendees to ask questions and better understand the follow-up process over slices of pizza and cake. Students could spend time at four different advice stations, which addressed topics such as how to follow up with employers, job application tips, responding to interview offers and preparing for interviews.

“We learned about a similar program at a professional conference,” Allen said. “We’re always looking for new and creative ways to engage students, educate them and introduce them to our department’s services.”

“Advice and a Slice” also happened in a more intimate setting, addressing a smaller percentage of the career fair attendees and allowing students to receive one-on-one support from Allen and her team.

Allen sees events like this one as important extensions of her department’s primary goal — engaging Brandywine students throughout their journeys toward professional careers.

“Career Services is here to help students at all stages of their professional development,” she said. “This event gave us an opportunity to showcase the support we offer them in a fun and delicious way.”