17:05 PM

STEM Student Lands Job Ahead of Graduation With a Little Help From UHD Resources


By Brijanet Figueroa
Contributing Writer, The Dateline 

With a variety of career-building resources in place, UHD connects students with job opportunities. Case in point: UHD alum Shawn Varnado graduated in December with a job lined up ahead of the 73rd commencement ceremony.

However, many elements have to align in order to land the job. For instance, Varnado needed assistance in finding a suit to look presentable at the Great Minds in STEM Conference, which included a career fair with different types of jobs/internships with companies looking for analyst positions. “I tried to get a suit from the UHD Main Career Center in the One Main Building, S402, but they did not have my size,” Varnado said.Shawn V

Determined to help, Wendy Cooper, J.D., Career Coach & Liaison in the College of Sciences & Technology connected Varnado to the Veterans Services Office. From there, Veterans Services reached out to Rev. Gerald Jones who contacted someone who had just the size Varnado needed.

“I was fortunate enough to receive an interview during this conference which later got me a job,” said Varnado. The thriving STEM student expressed gratitude for Veterans Services and the Main Career Center because they helped him look sharp — ahead of the successful job interview.

The staff at Veterans Services is extremely proud of Shawn. Tiffany Howell, Veterans Services coordinator, said that assisting Varnado is a “clear indication” of the office’s vision to “impact the community with a holistic approach.” “Being a successful student has multiple layers, including the physical, emotional, financial, and mental health aspects of a college student,” Howell added. “Our office is a stakeholder in the UHD community, and I was so excited to be able to answer the call from Career services to assist with Mr. Shawn’s needs.”

For enrolled students, UHD has career coaches available that help students find jobs and provide resources such as professional clothing. 

Questions? Contact the Main Career Center at 713-221-8980 or uhdcareer@uhd.edu

This story is a partnership with UHD News and The Dateline.


About the University of Houston-Downtown

The University of Houston-Downtown (UHD) is the second-largest university in Houston and has served the educational needs of the nation’s fourth-largest city since 1974. As one of four distinct public universities in the University of Houston System, UHD is a comprehensive, four-year university led by President Loren J. Blanchard. Annually, UHD educates approximately 14,000 students, boasts more than 66,000 alumni, and offers 45 bachelor’s degrees, 12 master’s degrees, and 19 online programs within four colleges: Marilyn Davies College of Business, College of Humanities and Social Sciences, College of Public Service, and College of Sciences and Technology. UHD has one of the lowest tuition rates in Texas.

U.S. News and World Report ranked UHD among the nation’s Best Online Bachelor’s Programs for Applied Administration and Best Online Master’s Programs in Criminal Justice, as well as a Top Performer in Social Mobility. The Wall Street Journal/College Pulse ranked UHD one of the best colleges in the U.S. for its 2024 rankings, with notable distinctions: No. 1 for diversity (tied) and No. 3 for student experience. The University is designated as a Hispanic-Serving Institution, a Minority-Serving Institution, and a Military Friendly School. For more information on the University of Houston-Downtown, visit uhd.edu.