Loyola Marymount University’s Career and Professional Development has responded swiftly to the COVID-19 challenges, including a deeply impacted national job market. CPD has transitioned all of their services to virtual solutions, and in-person employer events to virtual recruiting experiences.
“Over the past five years, our office invested heavily in virtual career development software, which has allowed us to immediately begin serving students remotely despite this temporary disruption,” said Branden Grimmett, associate provost for career and professional development. “We were one of the first universities to offer Handshake, the No. 1 early talent community with more than 500,000 employers on the platform. We also offer VMock, a 24-7 online resume review tool that leverages data-science, machine learning, and natural language processing to provide instant personalized feedback to students. We are thrilled that LMU students can continue leveraging CPD resources no matter where they are.”
The range of student services now online also includes virtual coaching and drop-in appointments via Zoom, career exploration tools through Roadtrip Nation, skill building modules on LinkedIn Learning, and upcoming virtual employer and graduate school events with companies such as Google, Procter & Gamble, U.S. Department of Energy, and LSAT. All event details can be found on Handshake.
“Our first priority is hearing directly from students and learning about what their biggest concerns and needs are, and then doing the work required to get them access to the solutions they need,” said Kyle Kim-Greenberg, CPD’s director of professional development. “LMU students want to hear directly from recruiters and be able to get help with their specific needs at any time, day or night. CPD is doing that.”
Angelina Lee, CPD’s interim director of industry partnerships, has been speaking with dozens of Fortune 500 employers and top-tier graduate schools to gauge how each is responding to the crisis to best direct students to expanding opportunities. According to Lee, “industries that are still hiring and thriving include technology, online services, food and beverage, grocery, food delivery services, insurance, financial and risk management, health care, government, data science and analytics, digital animation, and supply chain management.” CPD staff recommend students focus their internship and job search on these industries, which offer excellent career development opportunities for students and soon-to-be graduates, despite the COVID-19 disruption.
Currently, more than 12,000 active jobs and internships are posted on Handshake specifically seeking LMU students and graduates. All jobs and internships that students see in Handshake are because employers specifically selected LMU as a target recruitment school. Of those, 1,000 were posted just within the past week, and 25 percent were posted by employers willing to sponsor international students for visas.
Students interested in creative careers in entertainment, media, or arts and culture can find a variety of opportunities still available to them. Elena Muslar, associate director of creative professions and strategic initiatives in CPD, has been busy meeting with students virtually to help them prepare, network, and apply for internships and jobs still being offered. There are over 1,800 positions in creative industries currently available on Handshake.