Wayne State Career Scholars program honors student, employer


The Wayne State Career Scholars program recently celebrated one of its finest students and recognized one of its business partners for its significant work supporting the College’s premier cooperative education program.

The first event, a mixer for 159 students in the program’s three cohorts held Sept. 14, honored Abbie Gardner with the 2021-2022 Excellence in Experiential Learning - Cooperative Education Award.

The second event, a sophomore and parent dinner held Sept. 25, presented the 2021-2022 Employer of the Year - Cooperative Education Award to Midwest Bank.

The annual Career Scholars Sophomore Parent-Student dinner held Sept. 25 was an opportunity to bring together parents, community leaders and Wayne State leadership to recognize the class, celebrate the program’s wins and provide an update on the program and curriculum. 

The event also served as an important moment to pause and acknowledge the bench strength of cohort leaders to include faculty, the CEO Chapter and the freshman class of new Team Leads. 

This year, the Wayne State Career Services Office implemented a recognition program called "Cat Tracks Signature Awards". 

These awards are designed to recognize outstanding students, faculty, staff and employers for their commitment to promoting the career readiness and experiential learning of WSC students.

The first all-cohort connection brought all three cohorts together to mix, meet and learn on Sept. 14. 

The junior class presented members of the incoming freshman class with their Career Scholars Challenge Coin and co-op T-shirt, to signify a sense of belonging and unity within the program, cohort and among their peers.

Gardner was selected for her leadership and activities in the Growing Together Career Scholars program. 

She is the president of the Wayne State Collegiate Entrepreneurs Organization (CEO).

Gardner plays a vital role in being an ambassador for the co-op program, a mentor to incoming freshmen and acts as a role model for experiential learning. 

She completed an experiential learning internship with Norfolk Iron & Metal during the summer and continues to work there part-time in finance. 

Wayne State appreciates her efforts and recognizes the support she receives from the leadership at Norfolk Iron & Metal, one of the College’s Co-op Partner Employers.  

Midwest Bank was selected for its significant contributions made to the Growing Together Career Scholars co-op program, early student engagement, sponsorship of curriculum and events and recruitment of Wayne State career scholar students for experiential learning. 

Midwest Bank consistently participates in WSC Career Services campus-wide activities. 

Students working with Midwest Bank highly praised their culture of learning, personal growth and opportunities for real-world experience in the role of “learning by doing.”


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