Center creates connections

The Office of Employer Relations aids students in finding internships with high-profile organizations.


Infographic by Tony Flores/THE CHIMES

Alondra Urizar, Writer

The Center for Career Development has included the Office of Employer Relations to assist students in receiving internships and jobs by facilitating connections with top employers in Los Angeles County and Orange County.


“The benefit to students with this office is that what we’re doing is we’re building relationships with a lot of high profile organizations that have the capacity for high volume internships and so these are high quality internships that Biola students wouldn’t normally have access to unless there’s some front work done,” said Mark Matthes, director of Career Development and Success.

Three staff members have been dedicated to the office since early 2015 when the President’s Administrative Council and the Board of Trustees approved the addition. Nicole Hollearn, associate director of Employer Relations was hired in spring 2015 while Alex Chiang was hired in November 2015 and Reese Lee in February 2016. Both Chiang and Lee are employer relations specialists.


Since the Office of Employer Relations is within the Center for Career Development and Success, the office will present no change to the structure of the center but will add to the center, Hollearn said. The main goal is to have a range of internship opportunities for majors across campus and for recruiters to be on the lookout for Biolan applicants.

“So our goal is to have internship opportunities on a consistent basis for our students in a variety of majors so we want to broker relationships in a way that helps our students access the highest quality of internships,” Hollearn said. “We are building those relationships so that when a student’s application hits somebody’s desk among a large stack of applications that we will have a relationship, that then the recruiter is looking out for Biola applications in a competitive process.”

Students will also be able to speak to 15 peer internship coordinators who will be managed by Tiffany Lee, assistant director of Career Counseling. The student coordinators work with Career Counseling but also with the departments and majors of those they serve. Currently, applications for peer internship coordinators are being accepted for the 2016 to 2017 academic year.


The office looked for ways to help students create bridges into the working world and Matthes and Carrie Stockton, director of Student Success outlined the best possible way in the Career Task Force, coming up with the Office of Employer Relations

“A lot of what the Center has been doing for years is identifying, ‘How do we help our students launch successfully in the internship experience and become more and more a part of that?’” Hollearn said. “So we want to be intentionally building relationships so that our students have every opportunity to succeed.”

Junior public relations major Morgan Carr understands the struggle to find better quality internships in a highly competitive world and appreciates the effort the new office is putting into helping students.

“I think it’s really great and I think it’s really encouraging just because it’s really hard to get high profile jobs when you’re at a smaller university that doesn’t necessarily have a huge educational reputation or just even has their name out there as much as a UC school,” Carr said.


Carr also looks forward to future growth with the office of Employer Relations since most students have not heard of the office.

“I would definitely encourage growth in this and I think it will be really important to later pass it on to those peer [internship] advisors so that they can let students know more about [opportunities] and I think that’s going to be a big key,” Carr said.

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