International prebusiness majors looking to enhance their career development have a new resource on their side.
Recently launched by Lundquist College Career Services, the International Student Career Empowerment (ISCE) initiative provides international prebusiness majors with a structured approach to gaining practical work experience and expanding their professional networks.
Developed and led by assistant career advisor Xiaoying “Ava” Chen ’14, ISCE offers career counseling appointments, workshops, and one-on-one consultations designed to keep participants on track with their professional developments. Students are also required to get involved with at least one of the college’s clubs or look for on-campus employment opportunities.
Although there is no cost to participate in ISCE, admission is competitive. Along with meeting specific academic requirements, students must show previous proactive career planning in their time at the college.
Chen brings firsthand insight to the international student experience and what it takes to succeed at the Lundquist College. She came to the University of Oregon from her hometown of Guangzhou, China. During her time as a student, she worked in the Career Services office and held a leadership position in the UO Human Resources Association, a student club.
Chen’s background and interests made her a perfect fit for this specialized new role, which Career Services director Jane Evarian designed to serve the needs of the college’s international students.
“With international students making up around 35 percent of our undergraduate population, it’s crucial that we work proactively to facilitate their career success. Xiaoying’s work is a key component of this effort,” said Evarian.
Along with her ISCE-specific duties, Chen serves as a career advisor and helps develop workshops geared to the needs of international students.
For Chen, gaining U.S. career experience is a key element to enhancing students’ employability—no matter where they end up calling home. And her advice to international students is to get involved.
"Don't just sit in a classroom and listen," she said. "Go out and be engaged on campus. Find out what you like or what you are good at by being an active club member or leader or a dedicated student worker or volunteer."
Read an Interview with Chen on our Blog