More than 600 set for December graduation

grads wavingHundreds of SUNY Oswego students will participate in the December graduation ceremony at 10 a.m. Saturday, Dec. 16, in Laker Hall before going in different directions.

There are 632 students eligible to graduate. Around 150 are graduate students, most from Oswego’s School of Education.

“The market for December graduates is stronger than it has been for four years,” said Bob Casper, director of career services at SUNY Oswego. Student participation in the four fall career fairs was up, with strong turnout by employers and graduate schools.

Casper said recruiting efforts by companies rose this year, especially in accounting. Pat Piazza, who is receiving an MBA and has taken a job at TFG CPAs in Syracuse, reflects that trend.

“The accounting courses prepared me for being able to analyze and know where to go for any additional material I may need to know in the future,” Piazza said. “The faculty have worked hard to help me find a job and have also given me the self-confidence to succeed at my job.”

The college’s information systems minor helped additionally prepare Piazza for job opportunities, running three semesters of the Accounting 201 and 202 labs increased her comfort with public speaking, and assisting community members through the Volunteer Income Tax Assistance program provided her with tax-preparation experience.

Erik Jones, a communication studies major from Binghamton, will start work with Eli Lilly as a pharmaceutical sales representative in December. The job will begin with a four-week home study program, then four weeks of sales school in Indianapolis before Jones returns to work in the Central New York territory.

“I worked for Enterprise Rent-a-Car for a summer for an internship which was my first real full-time job. Getting a good feel for the business world along with getting experience in sales was invaluable,” he noted. “Also, my jobs on campus as a telefund caller and then as a telefund student director have given me plenty of personal material to work with for my interviews and resume.”

Jones also credits a supportive environment. “Everyone from professors, advisers, co-workers and friends have helped to prepare me,” he said. “Experiences I’ve had such as participating twice for Quest day, being involved with campus honor societies and speech competitions are all things that Oswego provided me.”

For Lindsey Scott, her most valuable experience came half a world away, as she taught in Australia through a study-abroad opportunity.

“Not only was it my first round of student teaching, but I was in a whole new country,” said Scott, an elementary education major from Dexter who will pursue her master’s in counseling education at SUNY Brockport.

She credited the practicums and teaching placements “where you learn really what teaching is all about and the ways of being a successful teacher,” but said the experience in Australia provided outstanding professional and personal benefits. “I gained so much more than if I would have stayed here for both student-teaching placements. Not only for teaching, but life itself.”

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(Posted: Nov 29, 2006)

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