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Florida State Career Center: Helping students, alumni in tough times

Each day, news of the economic crisis makes national and local headlines. In the face of continuous layoffs and rising unemployment, the Florida State Career Center provides services and programs for students and alumni as they search for jobs.

Elizabeth Okoli

Elizabeth Okoli, a summer 2009 graduate of the Master of Accounting program in Florida State's College of Business, is proof of the effectiveness of Career Center help. During a Seminole Futures career exposition she met several potential employers and secured an interview with Ernst & Young, one of the top four accounting firms in the U.S. The interview led to an offer, and she began working for the firm as a staff accountant this month. "Someone I met at Seminole Futures four years ago still remembered me," she says, "and called me for an interview after the expo."

Jeff Garis, Career Center director, notes that there is no question that the global economy is presenting challenges to college graduates in seeking employment. In light of this, the Career Center is working to manage employer relations and job development activities that will benefit Florida State graduates.

"Now more than ever, we encourage our students and alumni to use a full range of Career Center services, including registering for SeminoleLink Plus! via our Web site, attending career expositions, participating in on-campus interviews, and developing individual self-directed job search plans by seeing our career advisors," says Garis. "We continue to see many FSU graduates successfully finding jobs even in these tough economic times."

This fall, the Career Center is sponsoring numerous career expositions, where students and alumni can meet and network with employers. National and local organizations in a variety of career fields participate, and often select students they meet during the career expo to interview. Upcoming events include Engineering Day 2009, September 23, 9:00 a.m.-3:00 p.m., at the FAMU/FSU College of Engineering, and Seminole Futures Career Exposition 2009, September 24, 9:00 a.m.-noon and 1:00-3:00 p.m., Tallahassee-Leon County Civic Center.

In addition to attending career expositions to meet employers, Okoli utilized SeminoleLink, the Career Center's online jobs database, to obtain her full-time position. In order to interview with Ernst & Young on campus after Seminole Futures, Elizabeth had to be registered for SeminoleLink Plus! services. All students who wish to participate in on-campus recruiting must have Plus! services, and many of the employers who attend Seminole Futures interview on campus. Students can prepare by obtaining Plus! services prior to attending career expositions.

According to Okoli, using SeminoleLink simplifies the job search process. "SeminoleLink brings everything together and all the companies are in one place so you don't have to send resumes left, right and center," she said. "You can do everything through SeminoleLink."

Career Center staff are committed to bringing students, alumni and employers together. To learn more about the Career Center, visit or call 850-644-6431.

"We continue to see many FSU graduates successfully finding jobs even in these tough economic times."

Jeff Garis
Director, Florida State University Career Center