University News

WIU 2016 CBT Professional Development Series

September 6, 2016

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MACOMB, IL - - Western Illinois University's College of Business and Technology (CBT) will host the annual Professional Development Series Sept. 8-27. The series is made possible with funding from John Deere North America Recruiting and Staffing.

Students are invited to register for the more than 20 sessions offered that are designed to prepare students for the job search and a career in business.

The schedule will be:

Thursday, Sept. 8
3-4:45 p.m. in Stipes Hall, room 121 – School of Agriculture Employer/Alumni Panel – This event offers students the opportunity to connect with career professionals and learn what they recommend for students to prepare for the job search. Speakers include: Rich DeSchepper, seed and technology manager for West Central FS; Sarah DeSchepper, farm business consultant for Valley FBFM; Michelle Howe, assistant director of the WIU Career Development Center; Rock Hatschnig, agricultural producer for K Farms; Michael Keane, crop specialist for West Central FS; and Nick Westgerdes, northern Illinois farm manager/real estate broker for Farmers National Co.

Monday, Sept. 12
9-9:50 a.m. or 10-10:50 a.m. in Stipes Hall, room 121 – Career Fair Preparation, presented by Michelle Howe assistant director of the WIU Career Development Center (CDC) – This presentation is designed to help students make a positive impression by knowing what to do before, during and after a career fair they will be attending. Students will learn to clarify goals, research organizations, prepare an elevator speech, decide what to take with them, dress to impress, know how to "work the floor" and understand the importance of following up with employers.

11-11:50 a.m. in Stipes Hall, room 121 – Your Digital Footprint, presented by Jill Myers, director of the WIU School of Law Enforcement and Justice Administration – This session will teach students about their digital footprint. They will learn how to take control of their digital footprint in terms of what they post on social media and the sites they enter, as well as how to limit the amount of information provided online.

Tuesday, Sept. 13
3:30-4:45 p.m. in the University Union Lamoine Room – The Art of Networking, presented by Laura Swanson Leezer, senior vice president and corporate business development officer for Citizens Bank –Professional dress is preferred—casual business dress is acceptable—for this session that will focus on questions to ask and not ask and how to network and build relationships in a professional environment.

5 p.m., University Union Lamoine Room – A networking social will be held so students can practice their networking skills with community business leaders. Professional dress is preferred.

Wednesday, Sept. 14
Noon-12:50 p.m. in Stipes Hall, room 121 – Farm to Table—A Business Built to Serve, presented by Julie-Anne Pickett and Margaret Ovitt of the Macomb Food Cooperative – Attendees will learn about the Macomb Food Cooperative, how it operates and the benefits of becoming a member owner, as well as how to take control of the food they eat.

1-4 p.m. in the University Union Brattain Lounge – Meet the Firms – This unique career fair offers students majoring in accountancy, finance and information systems to have an opportunity to speak one-on-one with employers who are specifically looking to fill job openings and internships in these disciplines. For more information, visit

Thursday, Sept. 15
9:30-10:45 a.m. or 12:30-1:45 p.m. in Stipes Hall, room 121 – Résumé Writing-From Lemons to Lemonade, presented by Kim Matteson, nationally certified résumé writer/owner of KWM Résumé and Career Solutions – Get the advice needed from one of less than 40 nationally certified résumé writers with more than 10 years of experience in career services.

5-7 p.m. in the University Union Lamoine Room – Etiquette Dinner, presented by Susan Creasey, assistant professor in the WIU Department of Management and Marketing – In this session, students will learn dining etiquette for a professional setting. Reservations and professional dress are required. Cost is $10 per person. Pay in the dean's office in Stipes Hall, room 101.

Monday, Sept. 19
1-1:50 p.m. or 2-2:50 p.m. in Stipes Hall, room 121 (for women) and Stipes Hall, room 501 (for men) – Dress for Success, presented by Shanna M. Bruer, assistant professor in the WIU Department of Management and Marketing, and Jonathan Devereueawax, instructor in the WIU Economics and Decision Sciences – Attendees will learn about professional dress in this session in order to present a good first impression.

Tuesday, Sept. 20
11 a.m.-12:15 p.m. in Stipes Hall, room 121 – Unlock Your Potential—Learn to Lead – Students will understand the critical responsibilities of the role of a leader: create leadership strategies that engage people and yield higher levels of performance by developing actionable plans to address significant leadership challenges. Speakers include: Macomb Mayor Mike Inman; Todd Lester, president of Citizens Bank; Carla Teslicka, CEO of McDonough County YMCA; and Ronald Williams, interim vice president for Student Services and assistant vice president for Academic Affairs

2-3:15 p.m. in Stipes Hall, room 121 – Ready, Set, Interview—Put Your Best Foot Forward, presented by Rachel Walker, human resources recruitment lead for Circle 8 Logistics – Attendees will gain an understanding of the job search process through the eyes of an employer: planning, interviewing and hiring the right person for the right job. Students will learn how to build rapport, emphasize their skills, overcome objections and motivate the interviewer to hire them.

Wednesday, Sept. 21
Noon-4:30 p.m. in the University Union Grand Ballroom – Supply Chain Management (SCM) Day Career Fair, hosted by the College of Business and Technology and the Department of Management and Marketing – The event includes presentations by many industry leaders in the SCM field with information about possible career and internship opportunities. To register, visit:

5-7 p.m. in the University Union Lamoine Room – Dinner with employer representatives, students, faculty and staff. Reservations required. Free of charge.

Noon-12:50 p.m. in Knoblauch Hall, room 105 – Employer Panel; engineering technology, construction management, graphic communication and instructional design technology focused – Join a group of employers for a panel discussion about what they look for in a successful engineering, engineering technology, construction management and graphic communication candidate. Employers present will include: Andrew Asbury, sales and marketing manager at Royal Printing Company; Stefanie Fenimore, professional engineer at Benton and Associates, Inc.; Jon Goodney, manager of Learning Technology at John Deere; Dave Kostello, corporate general manager of human resources at NTN-Bower Corporation; and Ben Van Zante, senior engineer/team leader of plant processes at Pella Inc.

Thursday, Sept. 22
9:30-10:45 a.m. or 11 a.m.-12:15 p.m. in Stipes Hall, room 121 – Personal Finance—Life Just Got Real, presented by Ryan Riggins, assistant vice president of lending at MidAmerica National Bank – Attendees will learn how to set goals, implement plans and apply strategies and tips for finances.

2-3:15 p.m. in Stipes Hall, room 121 – Negotiating Pay, presented by Bruce Western, human resource management instructor in the WIU Department of Management and Marketing – Attendees will learn to anticipate what you may need to know when they speak with a potential employer about compensation.

Tuesday, Sept. 27
12:30-1:45 p.m. in Stipes Hall, room 121 – News You can Use, presented by Rajah Maples, news anchor, mulit-media journalist and producer at KHQA – Students will hear from professionals and learn how to use the news to help them professionally and personally. Speakers include: John Bordewick, director of the refrigerated warehouse at DOT Foods, Inc.; Professor Emeritus James T. Kenny; Patrick Kolata, Edward Jones financial advisor; and Tara Westerhold, economics and decision sciences associate professor.

Students should register for sessions as soon as possible to guarantee seating and bring their WIU ID to each session for attendance tracking purposes. For more information and registration instructions, visit

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