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September 01, 2015

Career Center director gets to work

Joe Testani
Joe Testani

This fall will include a listening tour of sorts for Joe Testani, the new assistant dean and executive director of the Gwen M. Greene Career and Internship Center. Through a survey and focus groups, he says he hopes to “get the pulse” of Rochester students and then craft a strategic plan for the center that meets students’ needs.

“We want to innovate and keep abreast of trends so the students can reap the rewards,” says Testani.

Among those innovations is the rollout of a new platform aimed at improving the job and internship search for students. Rochester is one of 60 colleges and universities to use Handshake—available now through the center’s website. Through social networking technology, students can quickly connect with classmates, career resources, and events and link up with recruiters around the country. The service will provide a more customized job search, Testani says, similar to apps like Pandora and tailored to individual students based on their career interests.

Also on his priority list is a focus on internships and experiential learning—creating new opportunities and cultivating connections with employers. He says he will be meeting with staff, faculty, administration, employers, parents and families, and alumni. He plans to work with Alumni Relations to strengthen networking connections with alumni.

The career center will continue regular services such as individual sessions with students and career- focused events and also try to find ways to improve and enhance the effectiveness of the programs, Testani says.

Testani previously served as director of Virginia Commonwealth University’s Career Center. Throughout 15 years of career services experience, he has worked at the University of Richmond and Yale University and held leadership roles in several professional associations. In 2014, he was selected to participate in the Fulbright International Education Administrators seminar in Germany, where he joined 20 other higher education administrators from throughout the United States for a two-week program focused on career services, alumni relations, development, and international education.

Testani graduated from Binghamton University and received a master’s degree in higher education administration from Indiana University.

He says he’s excited to be at Rochester, where he has the chance to “build something that matches the caliber of the institution.”

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