The lifeblood of Clemson University’s MBA program is the talent it sends out into the business world. But no matter how accomplished those students are, they need guidance to find careers that are the right fit for them. And in an increasingly crowded and noisy marketplace, employers certainly need an easy way to find the right people.

That’s where the Clemson MBA Office of Career Services comes in. Led by Jamie Patterson, Director of Career Services and Student Experience, Career Services brings successful businesses and first-rate MBA candidates together to form a perfect match. Working with companies like Milliken, Mercedes-Benz, ScanSource, Michelin North America and many more, Patterson aims to create ideal partnerships between employers and potential employees.

“I love getting to spend my time working with students,” says Patterson, “helping them with everything from resume reviews to interview prep to career coaching sessions, where we collaborate to develop their personal brands. Our goal is to begin this process with the end in mind.”

The other main focus of the Office of Career Services is working with corporate partners to bring them together with promising prospects.

“We bring companies in on a weekly basis for Employer Spotlights,” Patterson says, “where employers meet with students to give them background on their organizations as well as fill them in on positions that they’re hiring for.”

Through a combination of Employer Spotlights, meet-and-greets, curated job postings and internship opportunities courtesy of strong corporate partnerships, Patterson says that the MBA Program’s Office of Career Services serves as a vital networking tool in a time when networking is more important than ever.

Employer partners at Clemson MBA Networking Forum

Networking Forum: Employers gather at Greenville ONE to interview MBA candidates one-on-one at these biannual, half-day events.
Image Credit: Clemson MBA Program

“I like to think of myself as a connector,” she says. “I get to know our students’ strengths and career goals and then match them with employers after learning the employer’s needs. It’s been gratifying to build this program beyond the classroom to help our students because so many jobs are found through networking. These opportunities give students and employers the chance to connect and see if there’s a fit there.”

Patterson adds that the fit is important because modern, successful businesses are often willing to fill in the skills gaps themselves.

“Many companies today put a priority on soft skills,” she says. “Hiring managers understand that candidates with the right personality and energy to fit the company culture can be trained to excel in a job role.”

Career Services has garnered attention from more than just students and corporate partners, though. Recently, the Princeton Review ranked Clemson University’s career services program #1 nationally.

“Clearly that’s something we’re very proud of,” Patterson says. “We don’t need to be ranked number one to be motivated and excited about what we do, but it inspires us to continue to grow and serve our students and employers the best way we can.”

Thanks to the reach of Clemson’s new online MBA program, the pool of applicants and potential employers is now larger than ever.

“Clemson MBA has always been a strong regional program, and we have amazing relationships with companies in and around the Greenville area,” says Patterson, “but today we have students all over the world. Career Services continues to expand our reach, opening up students’ eyes to more opportunities out there.”

Patterson adds that one of the primary goals of the Office of Career Services is to make recruiting easy for the companies that have partnered with the Clemson MBA Program by matching each organization’s employment needs with exceptional candidates.

“We try to make the hiring process as seamless as possible,” she says, “because I can’t emphasize enough how appreciative I am of our corporate partners and the opportunities they provide for our students.”