Career Services collaborates to develop South Texas advisory committee
Contact: Melissa Vasquez 956/381-3639
Posted: 11/30/2006
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The University of Texas-Pan American Office of Career Services has partnered with the South Texas College (STC) Job Placement Office to create the Career Employment Advisory Committee of South Texas to increase career opportunities for students and alumni, and economic growth potential for the community.

Velinda Reyes, UTPA director of Career Services, said the collaboration between the institutions will not only benefit the region, but most of all the students.

Pictured are organizers and members of the Career Employment Advisory Committee of South Texas, which was developed by UTPA and STC. First row left to right are Celia Castaneda, UTPA; Yvette Padilla, UTPA; Nancy Reed, WorkForce Solutions; Celinda Palacios, STC; Velinda V. Reyes, UTPA; Pete Luna, STC; Rebecca Solis, STC; Susie Chapa, UTPA; Wanda Spratt, STC; and Dr. Kristin Croyle, UTPA. Second row left to right are Ronnie Garcia, UTPA; Dr. Michael Meyers, UTPA; Dr. Charlene Blankenship, UTPA; Leticia Flores, STC; Mike Willis, South Texas Manufacturing Association; Miki McCarthy, San Juan Economic Development Corp.; Steve Alhenius, McAllen Chamber of Commerce; and Ricardo Cano, UTPA.
"We want our students to have a career not just a job. We are all responsible for ensuring the students of this region have the work skills necessary to function and become productive employees" Reyes said. "Through this collaboration, I hope to establish alliances and lasting partnerships that can provide us with guidance on what employers in our region are requiring, help identify and develop employment opportunities, and assist both institutions in marketing our student body talent to employers of this region."

The committee will consist of 30 representatives that will include community leaders, faculty, and career services professionals from UTPA and STC. Currently the committee is made up of representatives from the local Economic Development Corporations, Chambers of Commerce and Workforce Solutions, who will serve consecutive two-year terms.

The goals of the committee are to provide advice concerning labor market trends, training methods and hiring needs; assist career services professional staff in updating industry knowledge and student awareness; provide a channel of communication between both institutions, faculty, and the business community; provide direction and a concrete structure for the development of opportunities for students in the local community; provide ongoing assessment of employer needs and a self-assessment of the centers progress in meeting these needs; generate meaningful feedback from the business community; identify strategies for program improvement; bring experience and wisdom to the issues facing today's world of employment; and provide enhanced contacts between both institutions and the business community and increase on-campus recruitment of its students.

For more information on the Career Employment Advisory Committee of South Texas or to learn about UTPA's Career Services Office, contact Reyes at 956/381-2243.