Barry McNamara  |   Published May 04, 2022

Connecting Students, Employers

Kristy Krisher focused on building relationships with area businesses to help Monmouth students land internships.

MONMOUTH, Ill. – As an undergraduate student at Alfred University in New York, Kristy Krisher wasn’t aware of the school’s office of career services.

KRISTY KRISHER: Associate director of employer relations and internship development focused on bu... KRISTY KRISHER: Associate director of employer relations and internship development focused on building relationships with region's employers.But in her new role at Monmouth College, Krisher will focus on getting the word out about all that the Wackerle Center for Career, Leadership and Fellowships offers students – specifically, internship opportunities.

Krisher is the Wackerle Center’s new associate director of employer relations and internship development, a position she recently assumed after a temporary role in the College’s admission department since last September.

“My position involves creating relationships with employers and developing and managing the internship program,” said Krisher, who will also be heavily involved with career fairs and other career-centered services.


Connecting academics, interests with occupation

At Alford, Krisher earned a degree in psychology, a major she chose without putting much thought into where it might lead professionally.

“I didn’t think about where the degree would lead to, I just knew it was interesting to me,” she said.

“Kristy’s been on the HR side and knows about talent acquisition. She understands employers’ needs and will help us make good matches between employers and our students.”
— Marnie Dugan


In her new role, Krisher will help students be more intentional about how their studies and their interests intersect with professional opportunities.

“An important part of this for me is making sure that students know what we do and how we can help,” she said. “When we talk to students, we can help them narrow a career field down based on some of their interests and their degree program. Also, it’s important to help students learn how to develop their résumés, how to get an internship, how to interview. All of those things are critical for life development.”

Krisher holds a master’s degree in public administration from the University of Illinois-Springfield. She is currently attending the University of Illinois, seeking a doctorate of organization and leadership with specialization in human resource development.

Wackerle Center Director Marnie Dugan ’95 said that Krisher, who has worked in human resources in the private sector, is the ideal person to interact with students.

“This position has a lot of responsibility external-facing and building relationships with employers and alumni for opportunities for jobs and internships on a local, regional and state level and beyond,” said Dugan. “Kristy’s been on the HR side and knows about talent acquisition. She understands employers’ needs and will help us make good matches between employers and our students.”

Krisher also believes that her background in human resources will serve her well.

“When I was in HR, I had the employer mindset,” she said. “I was looking at résumés with specific things in mind. I knew specific things I was looking for in interviews that were important that somebody who’s not an employer might not think of. All of those tips and relationship-building techniques that I’ve come across, I’ll be able to help with on the other end.”


Keeping a good thing going

Krisher won’t be starting her relationship building with employers from scratch.

“Our students do pretty well with connecting with internships,” said Dugan, “but we’re really trying to continue to enhance that and better track so that we can report better, and having an extra person on our staff will increase those kinds of capabilities.”

“Employers tend to really love a Monmouth College student. HNI reports that (our) students come academically prepared, of course, but also come with the leadership experiences that they’ve had on our campus.”
— Marnie Dugan


The College has already built strong partnerships with many local and regional businesses, including Muscatine, Iowa-based HNI Corp., home to HON, the corporation’s largest operating company.

“Employers tend to really love a Monmouth College student,” said Dugan, who reported that two members of the Class of 2022 will soon begin full-time positions at the Iowa corporation. “HNI reports that the students come academically prepared, of course, but also come with the leadership experiences that they’ve had on our campus – whether it be through athletics, or fraternities and sororities, or other campus organizations.

“At a lot of schools, students wouldn’t have the same opportunity to take on such elevated roles across campus. That is really apparent once they’re hired and get their foot in the door at an organization. Those skills come naturally to them – to be involved, to step up, to lead, to take on additional roles.”

Listen Up … 

On the 1853 Podcast, Kristy Krisher and Marnie Dugan of explain how the Wackerle Center for Career, Leadership and Fellowships helps prepare students for successful careers.

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