Dr. Charles Western Jr., a veteran of 15 years in career planning and placement in California, North Carolina, Illinois and New Jersey, is the new director of career services at Sam Houston State University.

Western, whose most recent position was as associate dean/director of the Academic Career Planning and Placement Office at Jersey City State College, said that as in most fields, the job placement area has been greatly affected by technology.

"We're able to electronically transmit a whole lot more data--rsums, cover letters and other documentation," he said. "We're also able to access more job information through tools like the information superhighway."

Some things have not changed.

"Employers are still looking for experience," he said. "Things like internships and cooperative education programs."

His goals at Sam Houston State University are to bring more potential employers to campus to events such as job fairs, to keep better track of graduates to determine their job experiences and how they relate to curriculum, and to improve services for alumni beyond placement in their first job.

Western has also worked in placement positions at Southern Illinois University, the University of North Carolina at Greensboro, and California State University at Northridge.

Prior to completing his first college degree, he served four years in the U. S. Marine Corps, including 12 months in Vietnam. His military honors include the Good Conduct Medal, National Defense Service Medal, Naval Unit Citation Medal, Presidential Unit Citation Medal, Purple Heart Medal, Vietnam Campaign Medal, and Vietnam Service Medal.

He earned his bachelor's degree in art education at Chicago State University and taught art in high school and at John A. Logan College in Illinois. He got into veterans affairs work and then into the placement area as a graduate assistant.

He earned his master's degree in cultural affairs at Governors State University in Illinois and his Ph. D. in higher education administration from Southern Illinois University.

"Dr. Western's expertise includes providing leadership to co-op job development and placement, advisement for undeclared majors, career fairs and vocational testing, career guidance computer operations, registration and basic skills testing, development of full and part-time placement opportunities for students and alumni, and development of new employer contacts," said Dr. Thelma Douglass, vice president for student services.

"He believes in community involvement, which complements career programs and links students to corporate contacts, " said Douglass. "He is an educator, leader, advocate of students, and committed to student, faculty, and staff involvement/collaboration."


For more information, contact Frank Krystyniak at 409-294-1833, 409-295-8541 (home), or e-mail pin_frk@shsu.edu.

June 21, 1996