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King University News :: For King University Students, Preparing for a Successful Career Starts Early

A new online tool is helping students at King University match their interests and abilities to potential career paths, even before they take their first course. The Career Matrix is a proprietary, web-based resource that assists students in their quest for their first post-graduation job.

For most college students, preparing to transition to the professional workforce does not begin until their senior year. At King University, however, preparation begins their freshman year. In fact, many King students begin the process even before enrollment through The Career Matrix.

The Career Matrix produces a digital profile for the student based on his or her responses to four simple questions. The profile matches the student to possible career paths, producing a list of potential jobs. After the student selects a particular occupation, The Career Matrix generates a list of majors available at King University that would qualify the student for the designated career.

Another strategic tool used by King students is FOCUS-2, which guides students through a detailed career and education decision-making model, helping them select their majors and make informed decisions about their careers. FOCUS-2 combines five self-assessments, the results of which are incorporated into the student’s classroom experience and coupled with guidance toward developing travel and internship opportunities. All first-year students participate in FOCUS-2 as part of their First-Year Seminar. Transfer students complete a similar seminar.

“Beginning the conversation at enrollment allows King to coordinate the student’s educational requirements with his or her career aspirations for the entirety of the student’s matriculation,” says Andrea Hurst, regional director of Career Development for King University. “This plays a key role in equipping students to graduate ‘on time.’ In fact, more than 80 percent of all King graduates who enroll with no prior college credit complete their degree within four years. This is nearly 20 percent higher than the national average.” 

King University’s Career Success Center is served by career development and career services staff who work with students throughout their time at King, providing services such as resume assistance, career assessment, career planning and guidance, job search preparation, and internship placement. Student Success Center staff, as a liaison with local businesses and organizations, work to identify regional internship and employment opportunities for current and graduating students, as well as provide internship placement assistance for King’s traditional MBA students.

“Resume help is the service most requested by students, but they also take advantage of a variety of other programs we make available,” says Donna Felty, director of Career Development. “Last year, the Student Success Center staff conducted 722 one-on-one career counseling sessions. We also hosted or participated in 30 different career-related events during the school year, including career fairs, resume rallies, etiquette trainings and graduate school practice testing.” 

According to survey respondents during the past three years, an average of 85 percent of King graduates seeking employment were employed within their major field six months after graduation. For graduates seeking an additional degree, more than 80 percent of King graduate survey respondents indicate they are accepted into their first choice graduate or professional school. 

For more information about the Student Success Center, Career Services, or Career Development, please visit http://careers.king.edu, or contact Donna Felty at 423.652.4752 or dhfelty@king.edu, Finley Green, director of Career Services at 423.652.4865 or flgreen@king.edu, or Andrea Hurst at 865.769.3123 or andreachurst@king.edu.

King University is headquartered in Bristol, Tenn., and has established 14 campuses across Tennessee and Southwest Virginia, including the new Nashville-area campus in Franklin. King University also offers degree programs online.

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King University is a Presbyterian, master's-level comprehensive university. Founded in 1867 as King College, the University offers more than 90 majors, minors, pre-professional degrees and concentrations in fields such as business, nursing, law, medical and health sciences, pharmacy, education and humanities. Graduate programs are offered in business administration, education and nursing. A number of research, off-campus learning opportunities and travel destinations are also available. King University is a NCAA Division II and a Conference Carolinas member with 25 varsity athletic teams. For more information about King University, visit www.king.edu. King University does not discriminate against academically qualified students of any race, color, national or ethnic origin, sex, age or disability. King University is certified by SCHEV to operate locations in Virginia. For more information, contact the King University office at Southwest Virginia Community College, 309 College Road, Richlands, VA 24641.