Connecting graduate students to nonprofit, industry and government employers

Author: Gene Stowe

Ann Amico Moran Ann Amico Moran

A Virtual Career Fair earlier this year that involved students from Notre Dame and 26 other top universities was so successful that organizers expect to expand the initiative, says Ann Amico Moran, program director of Graduate School Career Services.

Moran, who coordinated the Virtual Career Fair with counterparts from Rutgers, Duke and Northwestern, says 84 Notre Dame master’s and Ph.D. candidates participated. Many received interviews and offers, and at least one accepted a job.

The team will give a presentation about the event at the annual conference of the Graduate Career Consortium in Chicago in June. Notre Dame is co-hosting the conference with the University of Chicago, Northwestern University and the University of Illinois.

The group worked with Career Eco, a specialist in providing such fairs. Universities provided their employer lists to Career Eco, and students filled out profiles and uploaded resumes or CVs. Employers covered costs.

“It’s one day,” Moran explains. “The employers who participated are put up on the site, so they either have actual positions they’re posting for or they have a presence at the virtual fair.”

Employers and groups of students can chat together in a live chat room and schedule individual Skype or phone interviews for later, beginning the ordinary interview process.

The consortium has approximately 75 members with a Carnegie Classification of very high research activity. Moran joined about two years ago, soon after she took the newly created position, a dual report to the Graduate School and the Career Center.

She works to connect the University to nonprofit, industry and government employers; conducts professional development presentations and workshops for students; and provides career counseling and advising services for students.

“I have a foot in Student Affairs, a foot in the Academy,” she says. “I’d had industry experience, nonprofit and higher education experience. I had been through grad school and understood what it meant to be a Ph.D. student. I work with all 26 disciplines. I am a translator in the administration. I’m a conduit in a lot of ways.”

Among other things, she is on the Mendoza Corporate Relations Committee and the Graduate School Professional Development Team, which won a Team Irish Award.