HYPE Career Ready’s common bonds

First-year and second-year students got their academic year rolling even before classes started this week.

Sunday morning, new students boarded buses and headed to Hocking Hills for two days of bonding and fun outdoor activities to launch their HYPE Career Ready journey.

In its second year, the HYPE First-Year Common Experience produced 300-plus “happy campers.”

“It was fantastic,” said Jacqueline Sironen, director of Student Engagement and HYPE Career Ready. “I was most happy watching the connections being made. There was such a great sense of community.”

One of the benefits of HYPE is that by students’ first few classes and certainly by the time they return for their second year, barriers have already been broken down, Jacqueline said.

As a continuation of HYPE, Heidelberg brought to campus Sandra Hyde, president and founder of the Etiquette School of Ohio, to provide students with basic etiquette training. This HYPE Second-Year Common Experience was held Sunday in Seiberling Gymnasium. Hyde helped students navigate a four-course meal properly by walking them through a series of dining do’s and don’ts.

According to Mark McKee, director of Career Development and Placement, the etiquette dinner was a way to help students begin to develop professional skills they will need in their careers.

“The dinner was a perfect fit with HYPE and a great way to help students start learning to be prepared for those complicated business lunches of their future,” Mark said. “It was a great way to get students re-engaged and to start talking again.”

On Monday, AIM Hei, in coordination with HYPE, hosted guest speaker William Espey, the branding creative lead for Chipotle Mexican Grill who shared his career success story in a compelling style. His knowledge and passion for helping students find their way came at a good time – during the notoriously challenging second year.

Espey’s message to students was to push forward and begin to think about productive next steps in their career preparation. “I think he helped them see that they have a voice, that they matter, that it’s OK to be unsure, and that they’ll figure it all out,” Mark said.

Second-year students followed Espey’s presentation by attending the AIM Hei 201 conference before beginning classes on Wednesday. Students attended three sessions, choosing from topics that included: careers in marketing, time management; leadership, study abroad, identity, extracurricular activities and internships.

See a full photo gallery of the Common Experiences.

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