Center for Career Services Bolsters Road to the Workplace Program
The Marist College Center for Career Services launched the second semester of its Road to the Workplace program. Following the program’s inauguration last spring, the Career Services team developed distinct objectives to enhance the program’s usefulness and its student outreach.
This semester the center completed visits to DeVries Global, Madison Square Garden, the Metropolitan Museum of Art, Deutsche Bank and Goldman Sachs, Penguin Random House and Travelers. Trips to Horizon Media and Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center will take place before the semester’s end. Registration is free, but students must cover their own transportation and food costs, according to an email blast from Kevin McCall, the coordinator of outreach, marketing, and communications.
Amanda James ‘21 of Farmington, Connecticut. attended two of the trips and found the DeVries Global office space particularly impressive.
“At DeVries, when I walked in, it just felt so homey and modern and creative. It was very white but it had pops of color, so you really felt like you were in up-and-coming industry building,” James said.
While James said the Madison Square Garden office felt more “drab” and professional, that visit piqued her interest in pursuing entertainment public relations with the company.
“Honestly I thought of them as just the Rangers stadium. I didn’t know they had so many other connections, like the Rockettes,” James said. “It really helped me understand more about the company and the opportunities they have that I didn’t know before and honestly, I wouldn’t have looked for it.”
McCall said that he and the staff strive to provide trips of interest to a variety of majors.
“This fall, [Road to the Workplace] has literally blown up,” said Desmond Murray, associate director of employer experience. “It gives a student an opportunity to see an employer, learn the culture of a workplace, find out about career opportunities and find out all of this information without actually participating in an internship.”
Murray added that students early in their college careers could gain significant insight from these visits, which could then influence what subjects they choose to major or minor in. McCall said the program this year specifically aims to expose sophomores to work sites, so that they may make a more informed decision when applying for future internships.
Nicole Briggs ‘19 of Long Island, New York said the tour of DeVries Global gave her a valuable look into the company’s relaxed corporate environment.
“You can wear Lululemon leggings when you go to work,” Briggs said. “[The office] was very creative and had different types of spaces and couches so people can kind of get a break from their desk and get out of that bubble.”
McCall said available spots for the trips are usually limited to 15 to 20 students, though Madison Square Garden hosted approximately 25 students. The capped attendance, partly at the request of the companies, also allows students time to engage in one-on-one conversations with professionals during the event.
The program’s heightened popularity makes available spots difficult to come by and excludes some interested students, like Piper Bailey ‘21 of Rochester, New York.
“When I received the email about the [DeVries Global] trip, I had a feeling that there was going to be a mad rush for the spots and I was disappointed to learn that signing up even a few hours later would leave me without a spot,” Bailey said, though she has faith in future opportunities.
“I am hopeful that the school will keep up the workshops and trips to future employers and that the surge of interest will mean there are more [trips] applicable to me coming down the line.”
Murray said the center used alumni networks, family members of students and previously established connections to select companies for students to visit. For the spring semester and onward, the Career Services team aims to expand the number of visits and diversify the offerings to engage a variety of students.
McCall also intends to orchestrate trips to Connecticut and New Jersey as well as locations in the Hudson Valley region, such as Tarrytown, New York.
“We hope to have a different Road to the Workplace event every Friday,” McCall said. “I’d also like to see us going other places than New York City. We recognize that as the college gets more geographically diverse in its student body we want to make sure that students who want to work elsewhere...still have options.”