Career communities have worked to bring students together through connecting them to different people and potential employers.
Business and IT is one the six different communities that is a part of this message. According to April Carpenter, an Associate Professor of Management and Marketing as well as the Completion Coordinator for Business and IT, this career community represents a wide variety of degrees.
“Ours represents anywhere from accounting in business to paralegal to culinary arts to the CIS stuff,” she said.
Because of such a broad range of degree fields, Carpenter said that Business and IT will often try to highlight particular fields, especially ones that are in high demand.
“I think because we have such a broad range of curriculum in our career community… we want to try and help highlight new programs that are coming up.”
For many students, Carpenter said, they may not be aware of the different things that are offered with the Business and IT community.
“If I was a culinary student, I’m not sure I would necessarily think that I was part of that group, so a big part of what we do is try to make awareness of the careers out there,” she said.
Carpenter encourages each student to take advantage of the opportunities that career communities offer, even working with fellow students.
“I think there’s lot of opportunities where students can meet each other to build their futures.”
For all career communities, they share a common theme.
“We’re really all about wanting to connect students in likeminded programs with each other, with faculty, with staff and employers in the community,” Carpenter said.
Carpenter asks that all students who are not sure if Business and IT is the right career field for them visit Academic Advising or also visit the faculty and professors at Sinclair.
“I think our Academic Advisors are stellar and they’re also organized by career communities, so they’re very knowledgable about all the programs. I know most of the advisors also know faculty as well… there are also career coaches who sit in academic advising if someone really isn’t sure. They can help mentor students through that process,” she said.
Carpenter would also like to make sure that students are aware that they can speak to their professors and faculty members.
“Faculty are here. We’re here during office hours. I’m trying to brew Starbucks to get people to come so I think if students really want to sit down and talk, they could reach out to faculty and I don’t think they use that resource nearly as much as we would love for them to. I think I speak for at least 99 percent of faculty,” she said. “Even if it’s not an area that is our specialty, we could show them the right person to go to.”
According to Carpenter, she became involved with the Business and IT career community because of the mission that career communities represent.
“I think it was really the mission of what we wanted to do- connecting students with employers- I firmly believe that relationships and networking is so important and we can teach technology and we can teach different processes, but it’s people that make it happen. That was kind of the reason why I was interested in it.”
Business and IT’s career community, Carpenter said, has only highlighted the work that many professors have already done in classrooms.
“So many faculty members in a classroom level have already done activities like this. You know inviting people into their classes, dedicated audiences as a focus. I don’t think I realized how much departments already did that outreach to the community and try to connect students,” she said.
Carpenter stated that the Business and IT career community is always looking for feedback from students.
“We’re also looking for people to help us. I don’t think students realized we want students input. How could we serve them? We’re here to serve them and connect with them. I don’t think students realize that.”
Career communities have existed at Sinclair for four years. For any student whose degree program places them in the Business and IT community, they can contact their academic advisors or Carpenter with questions, concerns or ideas.