The Career Development Network (CDN) at the University of Minnesota recently awarded CBS career coach Rebecca Dordel with the Golden Gopher Merit Award for her work with students on campus. The award honors individuals making a positive impact for students while providing research, projects or service in the career planning field.
“It was an incredibly powerful experience to reflect on how my work as a career coach has been so rewarding for me,” says Dordel. “It's really nice to have such a culminating moment where you're surrounded by people in your field who you respect and have them acknowledge that your work has an impact.”
Dordel joined CBS Student Services as a career coach in 2014 after working as an academic advisor in the College of Science and Engineering. In her current role, she works with students on career and graduate school exploration, résumé and cover letter creation, mock interviewing and job searching strategies. Walking with students through this discovery process is where she finds the most passion and drive in her work.
“At first students may have no idea where to start,” she says. “But they slowly start connecting the dots between their interests and skills and all of a sudden things that seemed scary like applying for a job, going to a career fair, or interviewing are opportunities that students are excited to share with me.”
In addition to her work with students individually, her impact in the career development world goes both into the classroom and beyond the U of M campus.
“I'm in my fourth semester of teaching a new curriculum in BIOL 2001 Career Planning for Biologists, and each semester I work out a small kink or get great feedback from students that helps me make the class better,” says Dordel. “I'm hoping to have the opportunity to share this work with colleagues by presenting at a conference.” —Lance Janssen