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Saturday, February 16 , 2019, 2:06 pm | Fair 60º


Partners in Education Volunteer Spotlight: Carol Carter

Executive recruiter provides invaluable advice to future job seekers, community leaders

[Noozhawk’s note: One in a series on Santa Barbara Partners in Education volunteers. This article is sponsored by Antioch University Santa Barbara, a Partners in Education President’s Council member.]

As an executive recruiter, Carol Carter has developed a knack for reading people and identifying their strengths and weaknesses. She uses these unique skills to positively affect the community through her volunteer work with Santa Barbara Partners in Education, a local nonprofit organization administered by the Santa Barbara County Education Office that connects businesses and professionals with students to address school needs.

Carter frequently volunteers her time as a guest speaker in public school classrooms and as a presenter at many career day functions in Santa Barbara public schools. She also enjoys performing mock job interviews, in which students meet with her and present their résumeés and portfolios as if it were a real job interview. Carter believes these mock interviews can be a great opportunity for students to grow and will provide them with a leg up when they enter the workforce.

“I like to call it ‘the cone of silence,’” she said. “It helps that the kids don’t know me and I am not their mom or their friend or their teacher. I am anonymous to these kids, so when I give them helpful tips on how to dress, or how to act in a professional situation, they take my input at face value.”

Carter’s involvement has been tremendously helpful for Partners in Education in many areas. Chelsea Duffy, who runs the Partners in Education Paid Internship & Job Training Program, used Carter’s involvement as not just a benefit to students but as a tool in helping to strengthen the internship program model.

“Carol’s professional background and experience make her the ideal interview coach for high school students,” said Duffy. “She’s also helped us improve our program by training me, and our volunteers, about the most effective strategies to use with students during their practice interviews.”

Carter is a perfect example of how Partners in Education volunteers can contribute their expertise or life experiences, not just to help students but to help improve public education and youth-serving programs in general.

When asked why volunteering is so important to her, her love of working with teenagers shines through.

“I think that teenagers are very honest and that is refreshing,” she explained. “I also think I work well with them. They can often sense that I like them and this may allow them to be more receptive to my input.”

As to the community benefit of volunteering, Carter expresses her firm belief that professionals sharing their knowledge and experience with students is essential to the future success of public education. She stresses the importance of career training and becoming self-sufficient.

Why volunteer with Partners in Education? For Carter, it was simple.

“It was just a natural fit,” she said. “As an executive recruiter, I found that sharing my experience with the community was both rewarding and productive.

“I think it is extremely important for professional business people, especially women, to share their experience with students,” she added. “Many times, seeing someone who enjoys their work and who is successful in their field can inspire students to go to college and earn a degree.”

Carter’s impact runs deep as a volunteer with Partners in Education. The students she helps are the future innovators and employees we will depend on to lead our increasingly competitive economy. The students, their families and our entire community benefit from her service.

                                                                  •        •        •

» Click here for more information on Santa Barbara Partners in Education.

» Click here for more information on how to become a President’s Council member or contact Michelle Magnusson, development and membership director, at 805.964.4710 x4417 or .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address).

» Connect with Partners in Education on Facebook.

— Michaela Ford is a senior at Santa Barbara High School and a Santa Barbara Partners in Education intern through the Partners Job Readiness & Internship Program. Partners in Education programs are administered under the Santa Barbara County Education Office.

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