David Kendall seeks to help students on their vocational journeys

David Kendall seeks to help students on their vocational journeys

It was at his faculty farewell reception for his role of professor of communication that David Kendall, newly minted coordinator of career networks at Goshen College, was approached by Duane Stoltzfus, professor of communication, about taking on his new role.

From the moment Stoltzfus mentioned the possibility of him working in career networks, Kendall was hooked.  

From 2015 to 2018, Kendall served as an associate professor of communication. His new position, coordinator of career networks, is a new position at Goshen College. The aim of this new position is to help students be fully aware of the resources provided to them with regards to career planning and networking.

“From my perspective, these opportunities have been here in the past, but we’re really focusing on helping students take full advantage of what career networks can do,” said Kendall.

“I wanted to stay at Goshen College because I believe in its mission,” said Kendall, who is a big fan of the liberal arts education that GC provides. “Some people will get one job and run with it while others will jump around from one position to the next.”

The value of a liberal arts education, Kendall said, is that it allows you do do both.

Kendall, an avid communicator, has loved his new position.

“It’s very people oriented and allows students and faculty to connect with me to discuss vocations,” he said.  

A line on Kendall’s email tagline reads: “If opportunity doesn’t knock, build a door.” His philosophy in regards to helping students centers around developing career readiness tools and being perseverant.

“If students just continue to prepare and refine their profiles and job search materials, jobs will be presented to them,” he said. “The more you do it and the more resilient you are, it will pay off; resilience will work.”

The first thing one might notice when walking into Kendall’s office is the scent of lavender from his essential oils diffuser that sits in the corner of his office, right next to a cushioned chair that students can lounge in while receiving vocational tips.

Kendall wants students to feel free to stop by and visit him at any time in his Wyse 105 office; alternatively, students can make an appointment in advance by emailing Kendall.

He can help with anything from resume advice, to finding and applying to grad school to advice for those who just don’t know what they’re doing career wise. And while juniors and seniors may feel the pressure of graduation the most, Kendall believes that it’s never too early to begin thinking about setting up a resume or looking at graduate programs.

Overall, Kendall hopes to help students form connections. Thus far, through the first few weeks of the 2018-19 school year, Kendall helped set up multiple students with paid internships in Goshen.

Additionally, as part of his new role, Kendall has prepared a slate of events for the 2018-19 academic year that will present students with everything from the opportunity to meet, connect and learn from professionals in various fields to learning how to effectively build a resume to taking trips to visit potential employers in Goshen.

The year’s first event on Sept. 5, allowed students to connect with career networking staff. “I expected 10 students but got 28,” Kendall said of the event’s success. “We were pulling in a bunch of chairs from other rooms to fit everyone.”

The full schedule of career networking events, which Kendall ensures will always include food and giveaways, can be obtained by visiting the career networks office or the Goshen College events calendar.

This afternoon’s event is “A Designer’s Journey,” where students will have the opportunity to engage with a professional visual artist and ask questions regarding anything from what makes a good job candidate to business advice.

“Don’t not come because you think it doesn’t apply to you,” said Kendall, who assured that all students will come away with something meaningful.

Thus far, Kendall has thoroughly enjoyed helping students find success in their vocations.

“I’ve loved it. The team here has been really special,” he said of the student life staff.

As for students preparing to enter the workforce, Kendall says to be ready for a journey, and that should anyone need some help on that journey, they can feel free to stop by Wyse 105.

Carter Mckay-Epp, Features Editor
Carter Mckay-Epp, Features Editor
Written by Carter Mckay-Epp, Features Editor

Reach Carter at cbmckayepp@goshen.edu.

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