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Career Development and Exploration is paying students to invest in their futures

Article written by Anastasia Hunt and featured in The Cauldron, Cleveland State University's student newspaper.

With the hard hit of COVID-19, students have been less engaged when it comes to planning for their futures and being involved on campus. The Office of Career Development and Exploration (CD&E) has found an innovative way to combat the issue.

Career Development and Exploration is a resource on campus that helps students find jobs during and after college. Recently, CD&E has opened a photoshoot booth in their office in Rhodes Tower West, but even with the addition of new technology, the department feels as though students haven’t been utilizing the resources they offer.

Brittany Wampler, the Director of CD&E, shared more about the direction of the department.

“Career Development and Exploration is an all-encompassing place for students to reach their career dreams,” said Wampler. “We provide everything a student needs in regards to their future. “We offer help with traditional services like resumes, cover letters et cetera, as well as non-traditional services like networking, test prep or financial literacy. The goal is for students to cross the stage at graduation knowing where they’re headed.”

CD&E has implemented a new feature this fall called “Excel and Earn,” This program pays students to attend CD&E events and workshops that help with their futures. It can be small checkpoints such as getting your headshot taken in the photobooth for $5 or attending career fairs for $25. They host about 130 events each year.

“Students need to register for all of the events on Handshake. We use it to track students’ involvement and attendance for the monetary incentive,” explained Wampler. “Once a student gets $50 based on their activities, they report it to CD&E and within a week they get the cash added to their Viking Card.”

Handshake is CSU’s job application domain for students, employers and alumni to get started in the field of internships, jobs and more.

Wampler has spent 10 years working generally with career development and has a strong passion for helping students invest in their futures.

“We value and find so important a student’s career development that we are doing whatever it takes to get a student to attend and engage in these opportunities,” expressed Wampler. “I needed to be creative to ensure that students understand how important this is. It is planning for your future and that is so important, it is the first time our department is trying something like this and we are willing to bet $100,000 on it.”

If you are interested in attending these events, make sure you have an account on Handshake. Most students, if not all, are eligible to attend through the Excel and Earn program.

Visit their website or email them at with any questions.

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