By Mayessa Mitchell, Staff Writer
In August of 2012, the Office of Career and Internship Services implemented the Career Peer Ambassador Program. Much like the name implies, the ambassadors in the program are fellow High Point University students who have been selected to assist their peers in preparing for interviews, finding internships and reaching their career goals.
“We speak at Dinner Club events, plan booths and strategies, and provide feedback on ways to communicate with students,” said Melia Sigmon, Career Peer Ambassador.
Eric Melniczek is the director of Career Services and was influential in the creation of the program. When asked why the program was created, Melniczek said, “The program was developed after taking a look at [similar programs at] other schools across the country. We learned that students take well to discussing their career choices with their peers verses people double and triple their age.”
Currently, the four Career Peer Ambassadors (CPA) represent the sophomore, junior and senior class and various majors within the school. They all have had internship experience and were hand selected by the Office of Career and Internship Services to assist their peers.
“[We looked for] students who have worked with our office numerous times to find internships and seek resume help. We looked for students who were career mature and had successfully completed an internship, “ said Melniczek.
In addition to helping others reach their goals, this program gives the ambassadors the opportunity to learn leadership and interpersonal skills.
“I’ve gained a better understanding of how to communicate with different types of people and how to gear my advice towards the individual,” said student John Marsicano.
“It helps me also because we share stories and tips between each other. It’s always good to hear new ideas and it’s great to acquire public speaking skills,” said Sigmon.
The Ambassadors have been where you are and truly care about helping you with everything concerning career choices, including resume building and selecting a major or minor.
“[The CPA program is important because] it is crucial to have a substantial and impressive resume come graduation,” said Naomi Ehrens. “Getting a head start on this as early as possible gives students the upper hand in reaching their full potential, and offering the best chance of getting the job of their choice after their college career. The department welcomes students of all college levels and can assist them equally.”
According to Melniczek, the CPA program was a great addition to the department of Career and Internship Services last semester, and he believes that the ambassadors will continue to provide valuable advice to their peers.
You can visit the office of Career and Internship Services on the third floor of Slane Student Center for an advising session. Remember, it is never to early and never too late to prepare for your future career.