Posted on Oct 31, 2007

Dear Parents: 

As the new Director of the Becker Career Center I thought I’d take this opportunity to introduce myself. 

I joined Union College as the Director of the Becker Career Center on October 1. Prior to this, I was the Manager of Corporate Recruiting at Bryant University, located just outside Providence, Rhode Island. 

Prior to Bryant University, I spent 24 years practicing human resources in the insurance, pharmaceuticals and oilfield service industries. I prepared for a career in human resources by studying at Cornell University’s School of Industrial and Labor Relations. 

As a father of two sons who recently graduated from college and a daughter who is currently a junior in college, I approach my job from the perspective of both a parent and a professional. I intend for your son or daughter to receive timely and effective customer service, opportunities to apply what they are learning in the classroom in a practical setting, and post-graduation employment opportunities. In addition, we will strive to help students recognize the difference between higher education, where they are challenged in a very supportive environment, and the working world, where they will certainly be challenged, but the environment likely will be less supportive. 

From a professional perspective, I think it’s important that I convey to you that we are not in the business of handing out opportunities. The student must want it. Given the desire, we will provide students with opportunities and the skills to develop their own opportunities. In addition, I think it is important for you to know that we want to help students pursue their passion, meaning that they find opportunities for which they are well suited and that drive their natural curiosity. We believe that if they do, they will perform better and the rewards (both intrinsic and extrinsic) will take care of themselves. 

As such, we ask that you support your student’s interest whatever that may be. Remember, college students are developing. The student that leaves college is not the same student who entered college. They will figure things out. Love them, trust them. Finally, as I said above, we will strive to help students make the transition from higher education into the working world. You can do your part too by letting them develop their independence. In so doing, you will help them develop the confidence that will carry them throughout their professional lives. 

If you ever have any questions or comments, please feel free to call me at 518.388.6176. 

Bob Soules