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2015 Advanced Learning Workshop - How to Help Students Make Decisions and Take Action
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 How to Help Students Make Decisions and Take Action

*This Advanced Learning Workshop is on Monday, July 20 from 1:00 - 4:00 pm.

Separate registration required when you complete your conference registration.*


In today’s world of information overload it is imperative for practitioners to understand the brain’s biological limits for making decisions and the impact that has on career development. This workshop will showcase how you can positively impact your work with students by learning six cutting edge neuropsychological strategies based on the latest brain-based research.

In this interactive workshop, participants will: learn the strategic brain based career coaching process, watch live demonstrations, practice techniques, be provided and utilize a brain based career coaching worksheet, hear Ohio University assessment results, and discuss how and why to stop telling students what to do.

Research in neuropsychology has highlighted limitations in the processing power of specific areas within the human brain. The prefrontal cortex, which is responsible for decision making and imagining the future, is easily “overwhelmed.” Decision making is negatively impacted when the brain is overloaded with information; imagining the future, something you have not experienced, also takes a lot of mental effort. People spend more time thinking of problems (what they have seen) than solutions (what they have never seen). For many students the career development process is inherently overwhelming because of the sheer amount of information and future-based thinking that goes along with making life-altering choices.

With this knowledge, career development practitioners can be strategic in the manner in which we provide services and resources to students. Instead of overloading students with career resources and everything they “should” be doing, we can enable students to engage in the process with less anxiety.
This workshop will showcase how the newest neuropsychology research can be embedded into career services with six simple, but effective strategies:

  • Chunking the career development process in small incremental steps
  • Prioritizing next steps
  • Incorporating visual representations to career development concepts
  • Making students write down action steps
  • Guiding students to commit to their own created action steps
  • Create a constant feedback loop

Presenter Information

Imants Jaunarajs, M.A.
Assistant Dean
Career & Leadership Development Center
Ohio University

Presenter Bio

Imants Jaunarajs, M.A., serves as the Assistant Dean for the Career & Leadership Development Center at Ohio University. With over ten years of experience in university career centers, Imants is a creator of innovative and outcome driven career development best practices. He graduated from NACE’s Leadership Advancement Program and NCDA’s Leadership Academy. In the fall of 2012, Imants left the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign and accepted a new role at Ohio University. He led the merger of “Career Services” with the “Leadership Center” to create the Career & Leadership Development Center. Starting with only one staff member, Imants strategically developed the new career services paradigm and currently oversees a staff of 12 professionals and 25 graduate and undergraduate student employees. Imants earned a Bachelor of Arts from Earlham College and Master of Arts from Western Michigan University.


Additional Presenters and Bios

Jodi Pavol serves as the Assistant Director for Outreach at Ohio University’s Career and Leadership Development Center (CLDC). In addition to providing career and leadership coaching to students, she oversees the office outreach efforts to the Ohio University community as well as OHIO’s five regional campuses and supports the center’s student outreach team and the Pepsi Scholars leadership program. Jodi was previously employed as a graduate assistant with the CLDC while she completed her Master of Education in College Student Personnel at Ohio University. She also received her Bachelor of Science in Agriscience Education from The Ohio State University.

Lindsey Ward, Associate Director for the Ohio University Career & Leadership Development Center, oversees the planning and implementation of professional development for all undergraduate, graduate, and professional staff. Lindsey also supports the development of course materials for career course partnerships with multiple colleges at OHIO. Lindsey has taught career courses for several academic units reaching students at all stages of their career process. In addition to her work in career and leadership development, Lindsey also has several years of experience in residence life and marketing. Lindsey earned her BA from Marietta College in Advertising and Public Relations and her MA from Bowling Green State University in College Student Personnel.


Erika Kirk Peyton, Assistant Director for Employer Relations and Marketing with Ohio University’s Career and Leadership Development Center, oversees planning and implementation of communications directed to university populations and employer partners. In addition to career coaching, she directs the implementation of three annual career fairs and manages the CLDC marketing team. Erika began her career with a Los Angeles-based media firm, where she developed and managed a comprehensive internship program. She then served in the United States Peace Corps, engaging in community development within the Mongolian community of Ihk Tamir. After completing her service, she earned a Master in Education from Colorado State University, specializing in Counseling and Career Development. Erika has developed and presented numerous workshops within various professional settings. Her topics have included career development for young professionals, counselor self-care, and Shame Resilience Theory.


Erin Perdue, M.A., serves as the Assistant Director for Leadership at the Career and Leadership Development Center at Ohio University. With over 8 years of experience in student affairs and higher education, Erin serves as a leadership educator and seeks to guide others in reaching their full potential and finding their true passion. Erin also serves on the Board of Directors and is a volunteer for the Court Appointed Special Advocate/Guardian Ad Litem Program of Athens County, Ohio. Erin is a certified as a True Colors Personal Success Seminar workshop facilitator, where she leads workshops for groups of up to 100 for the True Colors experience. Erin also has extensive experience presenting and facilitating workshops and trainings for faculty, staff and student groups regarding the Social Change Model of Leadership, Strengths Quest and other leadership based seminars.

Aaron Sturgill is the Assistant Director for Hospitality, Merchandising and Recreation for the Career and Leadership Development Center at Ohio University. This position is an academic split position with the Glady’s W. and David H. Patton College of Education. In his role, he serves as the go-to person for students in the previously mentioned programs as they seek internships and full-time opportunities, as well as professional development. Before accepting a position with Ohio University, Aaron worked for Kohl’s Department store in management and campus recruitment. Aaron earned a Bachelor of Science from the University of Rio Grande and Master of Science from Ohio University.

Jessie Carter serves as the Assistant Director for the Career and Leadership Development Center for the College of Arts and Sciences at Ohio University. Her unique position allows for an individualized focus on the career development for OHIO’s largest and most diverse student population. In addition to her experience with the CLDC, Jessie has a background in college admissions. She received her bachelor’s degree in Spanish from The Ohio State University and her Masters in Higher Education from Ohio University.

Zach McGrain serves at the Assistant Director for the Career and Leadership Development Center for the College of Health Sciences and Professions. Zach was the first hire under the unique split position model at Ohio University in June of 2013. Zach is in his third year at Ohio University. He also has professional experience as an academic advisor for Ohio University’s School of Nursing. Zach is in his third year at Ohio University. Last year he presented to over 700 students in workshops, and this year is on pace to double student participation in workshops. Zach received his Masters of Education from Baldwin Wallace University in 2012 and his Bachelors of Arts from Otterbein University in 2010.





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