Julia Buttelmann has been the Director of Career Services at Tulsa Welding School and Technology Center (TWSTC) in Houston for over a year. She previously was the Director of Career Services at a technical school that offered seven different programs. Julia has been an adjunct instructor and a course developer where she discovered her passion for education. This experience was a natural step into transitioning to career services.
The work of the Career Services team starts at orientation encouraging students to think about their skills both in terms of going to class to acquire the welding skills and developing soft skills like communication and professionalism. Career Services provides resume workshops, discusses the application process and provides opportunities for mock interviewing which helps prepare students for the real thing and improve their chances of being selected for the job.
Because of the work that Julia and her team do, she recommends students visit them often and, “Communicate, Communicate, Communicate!” The more familiar Career Services is with a student, the more likely their name will come up when they send out resumes to potential employers. Julia also emphasizes students learn the art of professionalism.
Many students and graduates don’t realize a great amount of time is spent developing job leads and business relationships for them. Career Services hosts hiring events and career fairs throughout the year. They invite employers to be guest speakers for presentations to the students and encourage them to host field trip opportunities for the students. The ultimate goal for Career Services, according to Julia, is seeking to engage the student to become gainfully employed. The Career Services Team is very passionate and dedicated to their motto of, “Changing lives one weld at a time.”
Julia credits the success of her department with having the right team. “I consider myself fortunate to have a very passionate and driven Career Services Team.” Leading a dedicated team of career services professionals, Julia especially gratified when she gets a handshake or a hug from a student or graduate where she made a difference. “It doesn’t get much better than that!” However, she does face challenges when she encounters a student who is uncooperative or just doesn’t want to work. But, she is not daunted and celebrates the success of students that she managed to help through “persistence, patience, and persuasion.”