Lauren DeHaan, the assistant director in the Office of Student Employment, stressed the importance of supervisors knowing they have support. DeHaan said even though many people think of what their office does for students, she emphasized that supervisors are a crucial part of the student employment process.
“We acknowledged that a lot of the student employees on this campus have more connections with their supervisors and anybody else that they work with,” DeHaan said. “And so, part of our overall effort is to make sure the student experience is successful and to make sure supervisors are successful.”
Aside from becoming a better supervisor to students, DeHaan also believes it is important that supervisors take time for themselves for professional development, such as attending this event. She said the staff in the Office of Student Employment have been excited to start offering an event where supervisors could do so; however, it still may seem challenging for some to take the time away from the office.
Luckily, the Office of Student Employment offers many other professional development events that supervisors can attend, such as the Brown Bag Training sessions and the Jaguar Training Series.
The Brown Bag Training sessions are hour-long events where supervisors can bring a snack or their lunches and learn about a topic important to growing as a supervisor. “The nice thing about the brown bag structure is that it’s kind of meant to be something that can be done in an hour, pretty quick and easy, so supervisors can easily take some time out of their day to pop in, meet some other supervisors, and learn something,” DeHaan said.
The previous Brown Bag revolved around the topic, “Creative Onboarding: Starting Strong!” and allowed supervisors to gather, learn, and discuss how to start strong from the beginning when new student employees are hired to join the team.
Brown Bag topics are developed based on feedback and what will best support supervisors. Daley said the trainings are designed to be helpful not only to those that have attended their other events but also for those who want to come to a specific training event.
The Jaguar Series is a three-part hybrid training that takes place during different semesters and covers many topics. Participants in the series network with other supervisors, gain new resources, and learn how to support their student employees.
The office also aids those who want to become supervisors with initiatives like the Hire Achievers Program and the On-Campus Internship Program, which are funding assistance programs.
“We do get a lot of departments and employers on campus who want to hire more students, but maybe don't have the budget to do that, so those are great programs for them so they can still be able to hire students,” DeHaan said.
Outside of events and training sessions, the Office of Student Employment also offers consulting services, one-on-one support, and departmental support for those with specific challenges or questions. “We're always happy to meet with supervisors, either one-on-one or even in small groups within departments, to help them with more individualized support, based on whatever their needs happen to be,” DeHaan said. For those who cannot find the time to leave their offices, occasional webinars are even available.
With all these resources in place for supervisors, DeHaan and Daley stress how the office is a big advocate for supervisors on campus. Daley said that they will help with anything on the employer side of student employment, such as workplace issues, hiring questions, and training.
“More than anything, we do at least want our supervisors to know that they do have somebody in their corner and that we are always happy to offer what we can to make sure that their students are successful and so are they as supervisors,” DeHaan said.