For the Troy Daily News
TROY — The Hobart Institute of Welding Technology (HIWT) has opened a new Student Resource Center (SRC) at its Troy campus to better assist students to find a job upon successful completion of their welding training. The new SRC merges the Employment Assistance Center and Welding Resource Library into a facility that includes significant technology upgrades, a full time staff of three career development professionals, and other amenities designed to better serve both students and prospective employers.
One of the primary technology enhancements is a large video screen that features a continuous scrolling of open welding job postings and profiles of prospective employers from around the country. The up-to-date job information is also available to students and alumni through a password protected area of the HIWT website, allowing them to easily find and apply for jobs that meet their interests and qualifications.
Additional upgrades include a conference room equipped with full Skyping capabilities for employers to meet and interview students in person or remotely, eight PCs for onsite student use, a Smart TV for viewing welding DVDs or online videos, and seating for up to 24 students. With new furniture, hardwood floors and an open, bright environment, the SRC is also more accessible and conducive to successful career placement.
HIWT also holds three job fairs during the academic year, hosting between 25 and 40 companies from around the United States who regularly hire qualified welders. During the fairs students are able to meet company representatives, gather information, provide their resumes and apply for jobs.
The SRC is staffed by three career development professionals that begin relationships with students in their first weeks on campus, orienting them to the school, and providing counseling on social media issues, resume development, interview skills, successful job search management and proper job search etiquette. Welding training students are enrolled in either the five month structural welding certification program or the nine month combination structural and pipe welding certification program. A new group of students arrives on campus every four weeks.
Brenda Scott, the director of compliance and student services, whose responsibilities include managing the SRC said, “Career development has always been a priority at Hobart Institute, and with the increased enrollment the time is right to make the investment in the new SRC. The upgraded facility will better serve the students by providing sophisticated job search tools and access to job assistance professionals in one, easily accessible central area. The new SRC will also benefit employers, allowing them to easily promote their open jobs, while providing the capability for those from outside the region to conduct more comprehensive student interviews without having to travel to campus.”
In the 2013/2014 HIWT reporting year 79 percent of graduates students in the five month program, and 84 percent of graduates in the nine month program found jobs after successfully completing the required curriculum, as reported to the Accrediting Commission of Career Schools and Colleges in the 2014 annual report submission.
Added April Wise, HIWT career development coordinator, “We interface with students from the first day they arrive on campus until the last. With up to 60 students coming in and going out every four weeks, the new career center will help us more closely manage and coordinate the support services we provide our students. The employers who are aware of our upgraded career resources are also very enthused.”
The new SRC officially opened July 1, with the beginning of the new academic year. For more information on HIWT, visit www.welding.org .