NSU office works to help students find jobs


Students at Northwestern State University who are looking for part-time employment have a valuable campus asset they can use in the Office of Job Location and Development.

The office’s director Karen Loach said it supports students in their efforts to find part-time work by offering workshops along with the Career Center through the “Don’t Cancel Class Program,” which include information on LinkedIn and professionalism in the workplace and offering resume reviews and mock interviews in conjunction with the Career Center. JLD hosts a Part-Time Job Fair each fall in conjunction with Demon Days. This year’s Part-Time Job Fair is on Wednesday, Sept. 5 from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. in the Student Union Ballroom.

The office works one on one with students who come in the office seeking job advice and teams with Quality Enhancement Program staff to increase internship opportunities for students.

“My role in Job Location and Development allows me to focus on building relationships with students and with employers to increase all types of part-time job opportunities,” said Loach. “Making sure students are well-prepared increases the likelihood of employers continuing to recruit our students for all types of employment.”

Sophomore nursing major Elizabeth Parker of Winnfield used JLD to get a receptionist’s position at Exchange Bank and Trust in Natchitoches in February.

“The Office of Job Location and Development was nothing but helpful. They helped me make an appropriate job resume, and shortly after, I started to receive job offers,” said Parker. “I wouldn’t have found this job without the help of the Office of Job Location and Development and for that I am very grateful.”

Parker said JLD staff helped her find a job in a good work atmosphere that assisted her in paying for college.

“This job has helped me tremendously throughout my college career,” said Parker. “I love my job at the Exchange Bank. They work around my schedule and they put my schooling first. I am very fortunate to hold a position for such a caring company.”

The Office of Job Location & Development is funded in part through the Federal Work Study Program and is housed in the Career Center on the third floor of the Student Union.

A major recent change in JLD was the addition of Handshake, a new career services platform, which Loach says has made accessing job postings, appointments and career events much easier for students and employers.

“Previously, students had to come to the JLD office, fill out an application, maintain a minimum GPA, submit a resume and attend a mock interview to be enrolled in JLD,” said Loach. “Once enrolled, they would receive frequent e-mails with current job openings and instructions on how to apply.   Now, students can just login to Handshake with their student e-mail and password and search for jobs, which is a much more user-friendly process for students.”

Through Handshake, students can also make appointments with Career Center staff for resume reviews, mock interviews or career counseling and register career events.

This past summer, in addition to Handshake training and set up, Loach developed an employer guide that encompasses all aspects of recruiting NSU students.  She also worked with Academic Technology Support Specialist Joe Parrie and Randi Washington of the Career Center to coordinate the website redesign for the Career Center.  This semester, Loach said she is focusing on increasing the number of local employers posting their part-time jobs on Handshake and working to help students prepare to compete well for part-time jobs and internship opportunities.

For more information on the Office of Job Location and Development, go to careercenter.nsula.edu.