Charleston Tech Companies Experiencing Talent Gap

Posted by Allison Leach on Apr 12, 2016 4:02:35 PM

With graduation rapidly approaching, many College of Charleston students are looking to begin - or advance in - their careers.  Fortunately, recent population growth and new business development has led to increased employment opportunities in various employment sectors.  In fact, one particular industry has experienced such significant growth, that is struggling to find enough talent within the local pool to meet current demand.

“The technology community in Charleston ... has grown at a rate well above the national average,” says Ernest Andrade, executive director of the Charleston Digital Corridor Foundation - in an interview with The Post and Courier.  “When you’re growing above the national average, not all of your systems are going to be in sync.  Some are going to have to catch up, and education and workforce development are two big things we’re working very aggressively to get caught up on.”

Although some of the qualifications being sought require specialized training, such as a computer science degree, many prominent Charleston tech companies are seeking to fill positions at all levels.  Some of these companies are addressing this talent shortage by offering training programs for under-qualified new hires.  These programs present unique opportunities for recent graduates who are looking to get a foothold in the tech industry, as does the Digital Marketing and Social Media Certificate, offered through the CofC’s JobBridge program. The JobBridge certificate program was designed to help students and small business owners to gain an understanding of the digital marketing field, and help them to plan their own brand identity and marketing strategies.  However, the course also provides students with a basic foundation in many sought-after skills  - including Search Engine Optimization and Google Analytics - along with the opportunity to network with local tech industry experts.  Several of the course instructors have built careers in the industry despite a lack of formal education in technology, and may be able to provide students with insights as to how they might “break-in” to this burgeoning field.

To learn more about hiring trends in the Charleston tech industry, please see the article recently published by The Post and Courier.

For more information about the Digital Marketing and Social Media certificate program offered at the CofC, please see the JobBridge website.

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Topics: News

Secrets to a Successful Skype Interview

Posted by Allison Leach on Apr 5, 2016 6:58:33 PM

Increasingly, employers are turning to Skype as an alternative to conducting initial in-person or telephone interviews - particularly when the applicant is at a geographical distance. Unfortunately, many job seekers are not aware of how to conduct a polished interview in the digital space, resulting in a poor first impression.

Few differences exist between how one should present oneself in a digital interview versus a traditional interview: applicants should always aim for a professional and engaging presentation.  However, digital interviews do require some additional preparation and staging in order to successfully demonstrate that professionalism and connection. SPS professor Dr. Alice Hamilton, who teaches digital interview skills as a component of PRST 230 - Professional Presentations, notes that while students may feel intimidated by the notion of presenting themselves on camera, the digital interview setting can be advantageous. “With a Skype interview, you can control your environment to a greater degree; you just need the proper techniques,” offers Hamilton.

Below we have compiled some of those techniques, to help our students make a polished and professional digital impression:

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Topics: Insider, News

Rivers Pearce: From Rock 'N Roll to BoomTown

Posted by Allison Leach on Mar 31, 2016 3:21:36 PM

 When School of Professional Studies instructor Rivers Pearce first moved to Charleston, it was in the hopes of making a living as a guitarist: a goal he realized soon after graduating from the College of Charleston Honor’s College.  However, after a move to Atlanta and several years of non-stop touring, Pearce decided to abandon his dreams of fame and fortune, and pursue an alternate career path. It was this decision that led him to the then-emerging field of search engine marketing. 

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Topics: News, Courses

Retired Faculty and Staff Find Opportunities to Connect

Posted by Allison Leach on Mar 9, 2016 10:51:11 AM

In the realm of popular culture, retirement is portrayed as the ultimate reward, something we should spend our lives working toward.  Yet for some older adults, retirement may not be quite so enticing. 

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Topics: News

Scholarship Opportunities for Non-Traditional Students

Posted by Allison Leach on Mar 1, 2016 12:54:44 PM

Financial need is a common concern among those pursuing four-year degrees, and is frequently a factor in student attrition.  Many prospective non-traditional students cite financial instability as a barrier to competing their education, and report that financial aid availability played a significant role in their decision to pursue a degree-completion program.

As a partner on the academic journey, the CofC School of Professional Studies is dedicated to providing beneficial resources, and helping students to eliminate obstacles.  To this end, the school currently offers two exclusive scholarship opportunities for student enrolled in SPS credit programs, and strives to make students aware of other awards available to non-traditional students.

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Topics: Student, News

Forging a Path in Sustainable Agriculture

Posted by Allison Leach on Feb 16, 2016 2:26:09 PM

Growing up surrounded by gardeners, Laura Mewbourn enjoyed the fruits of her family’s agricultural labors, and tended to her own tiny plot.  While Mewbourn longed for an outdoor lifestyle, she chose to stray from her gardening roots,  pursuing a career in higher education.

Despite her lack of active involvement in farming, Mewbourn was committed to supporting local producers, a passion fueled by an awareness of international farming practices.  While contemplating what more she could do to give back to her community, Mewbourn fortuitously learned of the Growing New Farmers program, and realized that she had found a path back to her beloved outdoors.

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Topics: Student, News, Courses

College of Charleston to Open Veteran and Military Student Service Center

Posted by Allison Leach on Nov 10, 2015 8:32:13 AM

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Topics: Student, News

Creating Balance: Tips for the Non-Traditional Student

Posted by SPS on Aug 24, 2015 11:10:30 AM

Original Post by Carla Stewart, Academic and Career Advisor

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Topics: News, Homepage

Understanding Financial Aid

Posted by SPS on Aug 24, 2015 11:04:11 AM

Original post written by Ashley Riser, Associate Director of Admissions and Assistant Registrar

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Topics: News, Homepage

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The School of Professional Studies is your partner on the journey toward a more fulfilling future. We are accessible, flexible, creative and tenacious. We work hard to provide access to the education you need to build a brighter future for yourself and in turn, for our community.

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