#ToBeMe@NOVA Series: Employed Students Resources

working student2working student

I want to thank everyone who took the time to share their experience of what it’s like to be an employed student at NOVA.  ELI is dedicated to creating an educational environment that appreciates and acknowledges the individual experiences of its diverse population of students, faculty, and staff and below are some resources and helpful tips for students and faculty that could help foster such an environment for our employed students.

Tips for Students and Faculty

For Students:

Prioritize:  If school is most important, cut back on your hours at work (if possible). If work is most important, take fewer classes.

Make yourself take time for yourself: You have to carve out space between work and school for you to enjoy your life. Don’t forget that life is meant to be lived and it’s more than deadlines, paychecks, bills, and assignments.

Successful planning and time management: Contact ELI Success Coaches at elisuccess@nvcc.edu or call 703-764-5076 for help with time management, planning, and a host of other resources and services.

Communicate with your instructor: Talk often and early about your work schedule, scheduling conflicts, etc. Your instructor may be willing to provide you with special accommodations.

For Faculty:

Open the door for communication: Invite students into the conversation about their concerns about work and school. Posting a statement on Blackboard is a good start.

Acknowledge the importance of the students’ other life responsibilities:  Create an environment of understanding and free of ultimatums.

Offer resources:  Empathize with your students and link them with assistance (i.e. tutoring resources, resources to help with work/school balance, etc.) that you would find useful if you were in their shoes. Your wealth of knowledge and life experience can be of great use to students.

Resources for Students

NOVA’s Career Services websitehttp://www.nvcc.edu/current-students/career-services/index.html – this website provides information about the career development process and connects individuals to resources pertaining to self-assessment, career exploration, decision making, and finding employment.

College Central Networkhttp://www.collegecentral.com/nova/ – this resource includes a database of current, full-time, part-time, and contractual jobs posted by employers interested in hiring NOVA students.  Individuals can create and post their resume online.  This resource also includes a national job board, career articles written by industry professionals, career videos, and career advice podcasts.

CareerOneStophttp://www.acinet.org/ – this website provides information about occupations and industries as well as state labor market information and resources.

Monster http://www.monster.com/ – this resource includes an online job board as well as resources on a variety of areas to include resume advice, interviewing tips, and career advice by industry.    Individuals can create and post their resume online.  Individuals interested in articles about starting a new job, leaving a job, work-life balance, and workplace issues should take a look at the “In the Workplace” section.  Individuals interested in reading articles about getting promoted or changing careers should take a look at the “Career Development” section.  Both sections are located within the “Browse Career Advice” area of the “Career Resources” section.

If you would like more one-on-one career counseling, please contact ELI Career Counselor, Christy Jensen at chjensen@nvcc.edu.

–Jennifer, ELI Success Coach

Digital Open ELI Courses

Have you started thinking about your schedule for next semester? Are you interested in taking a class that doesn’t require you to purchase any textbooks or course materials? A Digital Open ELI class might be right for you!

ELI offers several online courses that do not require students to purchase textbooks or other course materials. Digital Open courses use free online material and Open Educational Resources (OER) instead of expensive textbooks. You can try one or two Digital Open courses, or even complete an entire AS degree track. Instead of requiring traditional textbooks, all readings and materials used in the courses will be available to students free of charge online as OER, or through NOVA’s library resources.

Are you ready try one of ELI’s Digital Open courses? Just look for the notification in the notes section in the online schedule of classes stating: This is a digital open course. No textbook purchase required.

Save time and money with a Digital Open course at ELI! For more information about registering for one of ELI’s Digital Open courses, contact the ELI Counselors at elicounselors@nvcc.edu or 703.323.2425.

Resource Review: Opposing Viewpoints

image of an umpire referring betwen two menDuring your time at NOVA, you may be asked to write about a controversial issue. For example, a teacher assigns an argumentative essay assignment on global warming. To begin your research, start with the Opposing Viewpoints in Context database.

The Opposing Viewpoints in Context database offers opinion/editorial articles on each topic as well as academic, reference, magazine, and website articles. Use this database to understand different perspectives on debated topics in both your academic and personal life.

If you need help using this database, contact the library at ELI-Library@nvcc.edu. Happy searching!

screen caption of the Opposing VIewpoints database

This week at ELI

To celebrate National Career Development Month (NCDM), we are posting quotes on Twitter throughout the month. What is your favorite quotes? Leave a comment and let us know!

Choose a job you love, and you will never have to work a day in your life. -Confucius

Conducting a Job Search Webinar: This 45 minute webinar will focus on basic strategies for conducting a job search. Topics covered will include creating a plan, identifying sources of job leads, and resume, cover letter, and interview basics.

Preparing for Finals Webinars – Are you ready for Finals Week? ELI can help you prepare! The How to Prepare for Finals webinar will focus on topics and strategies to help ease anxiety and help you study smart such as: Early preparation, planning your approach and taking the exam.

Spring Registration is underway! If you have any questions about enrolling in the correct classes for the spring semester, contact the ELI Counselors at 703.323.2425 or elicounselors@nvcc.edu.

National Distance Learning Week

To mark National Distance Learning Week this week, we wanted to take the opportunity to share with you 10 things you might not know about ELI.NDLW1.    23,000 NOVA students taken online courses through ELI each year.

2.    ELI offers more than 500 different online courses, so whatever field you’re in and whatever degree requirement you’re working to fill, you can probably find it at ELI!

3.    ELI courses and ELI faculty win national awards every year.

4.    You are not alone when you take an ELI course – you will interact with your professor and with your classmates through discussions, group assignments, and more.

5.    ELI staff provide lots of services to support you in your online courses, too, including 24/7 free online tutoring, an online librarian, 24/7 technical support, student success coaches, and much more.

6.    ELI offers monthly start dates for most of our courses, so just about any time you want to get started with us, we have a new session starting soon!

7.    You can earn more than 40 complete associate’s degrees and certificates entirely through ELI. Check out the list here: http://eli.nvcc.edu/degrees.htm

8.    Not sure whether an online course is right for you? You can take the Smartermeasure assessment to find out!

9.    ELI offers courses in 16-week, 12-week, and 8-week lengths so you can choose the schedule and course length that best fits your needs.

10.    Most ELI students take classes on campus as well as ELI classes; combining the two can be the perfect way to get to your degree as quickly as possible.

Happy Distance Learning Week to all our ELI Students. If you have any questions, contact the ELI Student Services Team at 703-323-3347 or connect with us on social media. We are more than happy to answer your questions, as well as refer you to useful resources and services that will support your online learning experience.

Happy National Career Development Day!

image of magnifying glass over a paper highlighting the word careerIn celebration of National Career Development Day join ELI for a Focus on Your Career Planning  webinar today from 12:15 pm – 12:45 pm.

This 30 minute webinar will introduce students to FOCUS 2 an online, interactive, self-guided career and education planning system. The system can help students select a program/major based on their interests and aspirations, discover occupations matching their personal preferences and attributes, map out their career plans – present and future, and make informed career decisions. The webinar is free, but registration is required.  Unable to join us?   Visit the FOCUS 2 website to learn about the system.

Research Series: Identifying Keywords

image of a word cloud

What is a keyword?

A keyword is the main idea of your topic.

Why do we use keywords?

When doing research it is important to focus your search. Keywords can help you do this. Once you identify keywords for your topic, you can also identify synonyms or related terms to help you find more information. Finally, library resources produce better results when you use keywords.


Let’s say that your research question is this:

“What is the connection between running and weight loss among teenagers?”

Using this example, we might decide that our keywords are:

running, weight loss, teenagers

Some similar terms to use include:

jogging, aerobic exercise, cardiovascular exercise, fat loss, weight change, teens, adolescents, youth, high school students, college students

Need Help?

If you need help identifying keywords for your topic, please contact the ELI Library (ELI-Library@nvcc.edu). Happy searching!

This week at ELI

Happy Veterans Day! The online advocacy center shows how we can use the power of social media to support and enlist others in the mission to honor and empower Wounded Warriors.

451846227National Distance Learning Week– Join ELI to celebrate the tremendous growth and accomplishments occurring in online learning programs. Follow our social media sites to find out more about our online student social and trivia to win ELI goodies!

Check your Student Email for the ELI Bulletin Board – ELI’s Newsletter! We encourage you to take a look through the newsletter learn more information about what is happening at ELI.

Tuesday, November 11 from 6:30 – 7:30 pm – Are you a first-time college student ages 17-24? Start Strong at NOVA – Attend a required online Student Orientation to gain information about ELI and register for classes.

Wednesday, November 12 from 12:15 -1:15 – Focus on Your Career Planning is a 30 minute webinar that will introduce students to FOCUS 2 an online, interactive, self-guided career and education planning system.  The system can help students select a program/major based on their interests and aspirations, discover occupations matching their personal preferences and attributes, map out their career plans – present and future, and make informed career decisions.

Plan Ahead: Preparing for Finals Webinars – Are you ready for Finals Week? ELI can help you prepare! The How to Prepare for Finals webinar will focus on topics and strategies to help ease anxiety and help you study smart such as: Early preparation, planning your approach and taking the exam.

Introducing: “To Be Me” Diversity Series


This fall, ELI is introducing the “To Be Me” Series that celebrates student cultural diversity and gives students, faculty, and staff the opportunity to share and learn from the unique experiences of the many cultural groups represented at NOVA. This will serve as a way for individuals to connect, invite others into their experience, and acknowledge the differences within groups and find the commonalities between groups.

Culture encapsulates so much more than just race and ethnicity and expands to include age, military status, family style, employment status, etc. So we will acknowledge groups, such as first-generation college students, students with disabilities, active duty military students, senior citizen students, and many other student populations! We will even take your suggestions about who to feature each month.

How it works:

Each month we will highlight a specific student group and let students share short phrases, funny anecdotes, little known facts, misconceptions, etc. about all the struggles and triumphs that come along with belonging to these unique groups. Postings will be every other Friday on the ELIfe blog,  Twitter, and Facebook. The first Friday of the month, we will introduce the cultural group of the month and, throughout the next two weeks, students can post comments on the ELIfe blog,  Twitter, or Facebook posts. All comments to the postings should end in #tobeme. The following post will contain a summary of the themes from student responses along with resources for students, faculty, and staff specific to that population.

***Please make sure all comments are appropriate for an academic setting. Please refrain from posting obscenities, profanity, and otherwise offensive remarks***

In light of Career Development Month, we’re highlighting the unique experience of our employed students to kickoff the To Be Me Series. This month we will focus on those students who are juggling a job and the demands of school simultaneously.

Please share your experiences and tell us What it’s like to be…an employed student.

RESOURCE REVIEW: Ferguson’s Career Guidance Center

Happy National Career Development Month! A great resource to help you explore career options is Ferguson’s Career Guidance Center database provided by NOVA’s library.

Ferguson’s offers 3 major resources:

 Job and Industry Profiles picture  Job Hunting and Workplace Skills  Career and Industry Resources picture
Use the Job and Industry Profiles section to find detailed profiles of more than 3,000 jobs in over 94 industries. Use the Job-hunting and Workplace Skills section to learn valuable information for finding employment including tips on: etiquette, teamwork, resume writing, and leadership. Use the Career and Industry Resources section to find resources devoted to college and career advancement including scholarships, fellowships, internships and apprenticeships.

Ferguson’s Career Guidance Center offers everything above and more, including a career interest assessment. So, whether you are just starting out, you are interested in advancing your career, or you would like to change fields this database has something for you. Happy searching!

Need more guidance? Contact your career services counselor .

The NOVA ELI Student Blog