New Director and Volunteer for Career Development Center

Southern Virginia University has added a new director and a volunteer counselor in the Career Development Center to help students identify career interests and more effectively transition to the fulltime jobs after graduation.

Arnold Parrott, who for 10 years was the director of career placement at Brigham Young University, will serve as director of the Career Development Center. Tom Jenness, who was a communications professor at the University of Idaho for 29 years, will serve as a career development counselor.

“We are thrilled to welcome Arnold and Tom to our team of professional educators and staff members who are eager to serve our students and provide them with the best possible educational experience,” said Southern Virginia Executive Vice President and Provost Paul Edwards. “Part of that entails preparing our students for their careers. Arnold is perfectly suited to help us make inroads for our students and graduates to get internships and fulltime positions with respected companies, organizations and government agencies. Tom will work with students to help them identify their interests, prepare professional resumes and hone their interviewing skills.”

In addition to his time overseeing internship and career placement at BYU, Parrott has been a human resources consultant for companies like Kraft Foods, Fidelity Investments and Safeway Stores, Inc. He also was senior vice president for human resources at Giant Food Stores, Inc. He has taught both graduate- and undergraduate-level courses in human resources and labor relations at BYU’s Marriott School of Management. His wife, Phyllis, will soon begin volunteering at the university.

During his career as a university professor, Jenness, who has a Ph.D. in education from the University of Idaho, has taught courses in public speaking, public relations, small-group communication and professional presentation techniques. In addition to meeting with students individually, Jenness will conduct workshops on exploring career options, interacting with potential employers and interviewing effectively.
Jenness’ wife, Carolé, also is a volunteer at Southern Virginia. She serves as a receptionist in Main Hall.

“I have been so impressed with the caliber of students at Southern Virginia,” Parrott said. “I am excited to hit the ground running and help match these great students with exciting career opportunities.”