Jan. 4, 2011 - A national higher education association has awarded California State University, Bakersfield top honors for its new initiative pairing community service with career education. CSUB's new Center for Community Engagement and Career Education (CECE) has received a Gold Award from Student Affairs Administrators in Higher Education as part of its annual NASPA Excellence Awards competition.
The award recognizes CSUB's dedication to strengthening community engagement, one of the university's five core goals. In 2010, CSUB merged two offices to create one central repository to initiate and support service learning projects and career readiness. The new CECE collaborates with more than 600 local businesses and nonprofit agencies to place students in volunteer roles, internships and, ultimately, jobs.
"Winning the Gold Category is clearly an affirmation nationally that we have created something at CSUB that is unique and relevant within higher education," said CECE Director Jane Evarian. "The formation of CECE has created a one-stop shop for students to explore, identify and engage in internships, service learning and community focused activities. And, participation in applied experience is one of the best career and community investments a student can make."
One newer community service partnership is with the United Way of Kern County, which is contracting with CSUB to offer internships and volunteer opportunities to students in a variety of community based projects.
"The United Way will serve as an active partner in the professional development of students by mentoring students and introducing them to the critical needs of the community," said Carmen Bernal, Vice President of Community Impact for United Way of Kern County.
In connection with the new community and career center, CSUB also launched a one-stop, Web-based system called RunnerLink which offers students and employers a way to connect online. The site is accessible at www.csub.edu/cece and provides everything from resume building programs and a job search database for students, to internship program development and job posting for employers. The online calendar alerts students on upcoming workshops and fairs, and offers companies and agencies an easy way to sign up to participate.
For more information about creating community partnerships with CSUB, call the Center for Community Engagement and Career Education at 661-654-3033 or visit www.csub.edu/cece.
For more information:Center for Community Engagement and Career Education, 661-654-3033, www.csub.edu/cece
Media ContactColleen Dillaway, Director of Public Affairs & Communications