By Nick Abate
Suffolk is among the 15 SUNY schools that will receive a share of $1 million to support and improve its career centers, that will work with local and regional workforce to connect students and the community with career and employment opportunities.
The $100.00 grant will help provide students with even more opportunities, with NYSDOL’s Jobs Express and Job Zone web-based job-search and career exploration systems, which list almost 10,000 available jobs in the Long Island Region alone.
Suffolk’s I-PROMOTE (Integrating Programs and Resources for Outreach, MOTivation and Engagement) initiative is a college-wide, state grant-sponsored program that will partner the college’s career services centers with the New York State Department of Labor (NYSDOL).
“Enhanced technology and staff training will make it easier to work with the career counselors on Career Center computers. The project also supports job fairs on each campus, bringing employers to recruit students, and non-credit courses in resume writing, MS Office applications, keyboarding, office communication skills, and office netiquette, mentioned above” said Troy Tucker who is in charge of Suffolk grants.
With approximately 1.5 million residents, Suffolk County is the most populous of New York’s counties outside New York City, yet only two NYSDOL career centers serve the region. “I-PROMOTE represents a unique opportunity to provide employment services to residents and students using community college facilities located throughout this large geographic expanse at three campuses and two downtown centers, which are conveniently accessed and regularly serviced by the Suffolk County Transit Bus system.”
“Statewide, eight projects were funded. Each project is meant to increase the level of coordination between the NYSDOL and community college career services centers. Each college’s careers services staff will receive training in the NYSDOL’s OSOS software, which will be required for use as the case-management system for the project to track the number of participants served and outcomes. They will also be trained in the NYSDOL’s Jobs Express and Job Zone web-based job-search and career exploration systems.”
Students on campus are looking to begin more career orientated opportunities as they begin college to understand how to pursue a career, early in enrollment. “As a current student I hope that they continue to grow the career center. I have already sought out help in the career center and found that it has been nothing but helpful. They helped me understand how to take steps towards gaining an internship, which I as helped me for the future” says Peter Degennaro a student at Suffolk.
“I am currently a liberal arts major but also looking to start studying culinary arts over at the Riverhead campus starting next fall. I’m really anxious to see what kind of opportunities that the career center has for culinary based programs including careers and internships.”