Businesses Work to Connect Grads to Northland Job Opportunites

By KBJR News 1

June 4, 2013 Updated Jun 5, 2013 at 5:07 PM CDT

Duluth, MN (NNCNOW.com) - For St. John's graduate and Sociology Major Stephen Gross, finding the right career has been more about finding the right path toward the ultimate goal.

Come August, Gross will be traveling to Guatemala and Spain as part of a 10-month volunteer opportunity with the Benedictine Volunteer Corps. Until then Gross says he needs to sharpen his service skills-an opportunity which he found as an intern for the Duluth-based exploration group: Self Discovery Adventures.

"Right after the title I thought to myself 'wow, this could be a great internship.' I just moved up to Duluth 3 days ago, and I've been helping out with Self Discovery [Adventures] already as an intern," said Gross Teusday.

There is growing pressure to land a paying job right outside of graduation, "to start paying off your debt, because everybody has that," laughed Gross.

But both Gross and UMD graduate Betsy Johnson - an Administrative Intern for the economic development firm APEX - say going from college to a career is less and less of a reality.

"Actually, I don't know a single one of my friends who has a job quite yet-we're all still in the application process. Right now, there [are] hundreds or thousands of people applying for the same job you are," said Johnson as she paused from her daily desk work.

With many entry level positions requiring a minimum of two years experience, APEX Administrator Sandy Johnson says making community connections and completing internships are the most effective ways to kick-start a career path.

"Since we have 65 business members we have the opportunity to provide an intern with connections, and that's part of the process-making the connections, finding out what's available here," said Johnson.

...a mission on which TwinPortsConnex, a non-profit organization offering career development resources for young entrepreneurs in the Northland, was founded.

"We try to get young people as college students connected with mentors. We move them into internships, and then we look for jobs for them-we help them find jobs. If we've done the first two parts right, the third part becomes the easy part," said TwinPortsConnex Director Rob Karwath.

...making the transition from the classroom to the career easier for the next generation.

For more information on how you can get connected with career opportunities in the Northland:

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- Posted to the web by Billy Wagness

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