These days, Administrator of Student Support Services Melody Head can be seen carrying a hand-shaped chair around campus, which she said is her way to promote Newman’s new opportunity-finding service for students, Handshake.
Handshake is a career network for college students and recent graduates. Head said Handshake can help Newman students find jobs and internships, both in the Wichita area and worldwide.
“It is going to open up East and West Coast opportunities,” she said. “So, when students come in and they want jobs out of the Wichita area, instead of having to go to Indeed and look like a hundred thousand other students, they will have access specific to college degrees.”
More than 700 schools nationwide,
including Wichita State and Kansas State universities, participate in Handshake.
“We’re going to see the same jobs that Stanford does and that UCLA does — that makes for tough competition, but we are up to that,” Head said.
She added students will gain “more exposure” through Handshake and therefore find better opportunities.
Head said that she has been looking for a new program for a few years, but the change came when she saw how the easy-to-use interface of Handshake could encourage more students to use the service.
“The interface for Handshake looks a lot like Facebook,” she said, “so it is going to be what they are used to seeing.”
Head said there was a soft launch done in April, but Handshake will be fully available and fully advertised in fall 2019.
Students can sign up by going to newmanu.joinhandshake.com and entering their Newman email. From there, students will go through a profile builder that includes questions such as, “Where would you like to work?” and, “What are five things you are looking for in an employer?”
Head suggests that students also download the Handshake app so they can receive push notifications for a job or an internship suggestion.
The main thing that can make Handshake work well for Newman students, Head said, is to contact her if something isn’t right with Handshake or they are not satisfied so it can “be fixed for the betterment of all students.”