PANEL & ROUNDTABLE: Preparing Students To Land The Jobs of Today and Tomorrow (90 mins)


  • Saskia Campbell George Mason University
  • Dann Sklarew George Mason University
  • Amanda Caswell George Mason University
  • Candance Parham George Mason University
  • Elena Chiru
  • Destynne Bingham
  • Kaitlyn Keller
  • Stephanie Ludington



Panel Topics:

  • Preparing students to land the jobs of today and tomorrow (Saskia Campbell)
    • Session attendees will learn about Chaos Theory of Careers, latest hiring practices used by college recruiters and examples of competency-based grading techniques to elevate students’ confidence in the job search. Three employers from different industries will show how they assess job candidates on the most in-demand transferable, career readiness skills applicable to any discipline or job role: critical thinking, communication and collaboration/teamwork. Two faculty will share activities they use in the classroom to support these learning objectives. The facilitated discussion between faculty and employers will seek to bridge the divide between learning outcomes and skills.
  • Advancing Undergraduates' Job Seeking Skills (Dann Sklarew)
    • Mason's 2014-2024 strategic plan aims for "100,000 career-ready graduates" able to pursue "successful careers." Still, one in five graduates report NOT having a "positive career outcome" within six months of graduation. What can we do in our classrooms to improve their timely career success? This session will demonstrate how partnerships with University Career Services, local employers and industry mentors can prepare upper level undergraduates to develop critical job-seeking skills. We illustrate how to integrate career readiness activities - such as networking, cover letter writing, informational and mock job interviews - into an upper level "Business and Sustainability" course (EVPP 322) for majors and interested peers. Course alumni have applied this learning to secure real-world job interviews and even to "get the job!" Session participants will benefit from examining how these career readiness activities may be adapted to their own curricula.
  • High Hopes: Establishing Expectations for Internship Experiences (Amanda Caswell and Candance Parham)
    • As we prepare students to embark on internship experiences, we must provide a clear plan for success. Students often question what they should expect from their site and supervisor, but are we spending enough time informing them about what the supervisor and site expect? Utilizing a checklist of items, academic programs can assist with initial meetings and discussions between student and site supervisor. This method can provide quality assurance measures that student and supervisor are aware of programmatic as well as site specific regulations and expectations. This session will present a method of establishing programmatic expectations as well as how to incorporate internship site and supervisor expectations before students begin their experience. Participants will engage in developing their own expectations tool that can be implemented within their program.

Author Biographies

Saskia Campbell, George Mason University

I am an experienced higher education administrator with a reputation for asking insightful questions, making data-based decisions, maximizing the talents and interests of team members and creating an inclusive environment. I have demonstrated success in building collaborative relationships with all stakeholders, initiating and implementing innovative ideas that meet the changing needs of students and employers and bringing a high level of energy, professionalism and structure to organizations.

Dann Sklarew, George Mason University

****TEA 2010 Winner****

Dr. Sklarew’s research combines ecological systems analysis, technical assistance for environmental policy and management, and examination of collaborative ecological problem-solving processes and innovations.

With respect to ecological analysis, his studies have applied new data visualization techniques to tease apart complex effects of climate variability and nutrient management on water quality in the tidal freshwater Potomac River. He also developed an adaptive pattern recognition algorithm — based on a hybrid of neural networks and fuzzy logic — to successfully recognize early signs of seasonal drought from satellite remote sensing data of arid West Africa. As a Smithsonian Fellow, he developed a nitrogen budget for the semi-rural Rhode River basin (MD), validating demographic and agricultural census data through local interviews with residents, farmers and even the town veterinarian.

Dr. Sklarew has researched and developed numerous methods to assist environmental policy, management and compliance. For EPA’s Office of Water, he identified and characterized watershed management tools; conducted cost-benefit analysis for municipal investments in storm water pollution control; overlaid county-level livestock data with basin-level water quality data to identify “hot spots” where dense animal feedlots were likely impairing our nation’s waters; and created a Web-based decision support system to help companies comply with industry- specific federal water pollution permitting rules. In addition, he has provided technical assistance in developing environmental information management systems for the Chesapeake Bay; Cook Inlet, AK; the State of Texas; and international basins on four continents.

Amanda Caswell, George Mason University

Dr. Caswell is an Associate Professor and Program Director of the CAATE accredited Athletic Training at George Mason University.  As an educator, she has over 20 year of experience with athletic training education and is passionate about developing healthcare professional leaders.  She has successfully led athletic training programs through accreditation and serves as a site visitor for the Commission on Accreditation of Athletic Training Education (CAATE).  She has been a leader in the Commonwealth by previously serving as the president of the Virginia Athletic Trainers’ Association and has presented pedagogical and clinical practice techniques at state and national conferences.  As a board certified athletic training clinician, she has practiced for 13 years in a variety of setting including rehabilitation clinics, secondary schools, and NCAA Division I and II institutions.   

Her research interest include an evidence-based approach to recognizing, managing and preventing youth and scholastic athletes.  She has been an investigator on the innovative collaboration between George Mason University and the Prince William County Public Schools (ACHIEVES Project) which has become an exemplar model within Virginia and the nation for how public school systems can improve sport safety through educational interventions and injury surveillance.

Candance Parham, George Mason University

Candace S. Parham is a Certified Athletic Trainer and an Instructor of Athletic Training in the School of Recreation, Health and Tourism. Additionally, she assists with supervision of student clinical experiences. She earned her B.S. in Physical Education with a Concentration in Sports Medicine from the University of Virginia in Charlottesville, VA; and her M.S. in Exercise, Fitness, and Health Promotion from George Mason University. She has worked with athletes of all ages and skill levels. In 2004, she was an Athletic Training intern for the Washington Mystics. She co-conducted a study on preparticipation physical examination requirements for secondary school athletes and presented the findings at the 2006 National Athletic Trainers Association Annual Meeting and Symposia. Ms. Parham is also a member of the National Athletic Trainers Association.


Elena Chiru

Associate Director, Career Development for Career Education and Counseling Team






TUESDAY 1:00pm-2:30pm