Neeley Student Success Services: Advancing Students Toward Their Full Potential

Cutting-edge business knowledge isn’t the only thing that separates Neeley School students from the rest. School-wide collaboration helps them establish a purposeful, personal brand. 

February 12,  2015

By Elaine Cole

Advising. Professional Development. Careers. This is the triad that forms Neeley Student Success Services.

“I really couldn’t have done it without all three: advising, the PDC and the career center,” Amanda Washburn, junior Business Information Systems major, said of her summer internship. “All of them work together to give you the best experience.”

Advisors, coaches, directors, deans and faculty members join forces to help students explore interests, create academic plans, strengthen communication skills, understand their own and others’ behaviors, ace interviews and choose the workplace best suited to their skills and talents.

“Our mission is to ensure that students’ academic plans are aligned with their career and professional development plans, to help them realize their full potential,” Lynn Muller, associate dean for undergraduate programs, said.

Entering the Neeley School

It begins their first year at TCU.

Dean Homer Erekson hosts the First-Year Symposium to introduce TCU freshmen to the Neeley School. As hundreds of new TCU students crowd into the Brown-Lupton University Union and settle into their seats, Dean Erekson and a panel of Neeley School students talk candidly about what it means to be in the Neeley School.

Evelyne Cras, senior supply chain major, talked about the internship she landed. “While interning, managers have told me how impressed they are with my excellent knowledge, the polish of my presentations and the overall leadership personality that the Neeley School develops in its students.”

Following the panel discussion, freshmen talk with professors and students from each business major to begin to identify career aspirations.

Experiencing the Neeley School

Throughout their time at the Neeley School, students have abundant opportunities to identify their personal brand and discover what they want to do.

The Academic Advising Center partners with students to co-create their educational experience to determine majors, minors, coursework and student organizations. The Professional Development Center trains and coaches students to develop teamwork and public speaking skills. The Alcon Career Center provides guidance, resources and workshops to help students put their degrees to work.

The Neeley School offers Neeley Premium Credentials™ through the Professional Development Center, for every Neeley student. The three-tier program helps students define interests, abilities and skills, develop a plan for growth, compare knowledge of themselves with how others see them, transition from school to the office, and complete a capstone project to showcase their abilities.

“Students begin to establish a purposeful, personal brand with identified strengths, career aspirations and clarity of direction,” Kelly O’Brien, director of the Professional Development Center, said.

Beyond the Neeley School

One key indicator to success in college is landing a great job upon graduation.

Neeley School students can attend networking events, career fairs, career panels, company tours, alumni speaking engagements, trips to other cities and campus recruiting events to identify internships or career positions.

“The Neeley School helped me secure interviews for full-time opportunities and gave me great advice about being proactive, communicating in a real way with employers, and writing honest and accurate résumés and cover letters,” Michael Daniels, senior entrepreneurial management major, said.

The stats make it clear that Neeley Student Success Services works: 94 percent of TCU BBA students are employed or enrolled in graduate school within 90 days of graduation; 85 percent of internships are paid. The average starting salary for TCU BBA graduates is $55,300 with an average $9,000 signing bonus, above the $44,928 national average for college graduates.* And the Neeley School now has the highest number of employers recruiting students than ever before.

“The key to Neeley students’ success is that no one works independently. We all work together and communicate frequently to make sure each student is developing to his or her full potential,” Jessica Cates, associate director of the Alcon Career Center, said.  

Read the entire article in the current edition of Neeley magazine: http://www.neeley.tcu.edu/News_and_Events/Neeley_Publications/Neeley_Magazine.aspx

*as reported by the National Association of Colleges and Employers for 2013