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  • Peer Career Coaches: Hire, Train, and Empower

    • Fee: $175.00 Member; $300.00 Nonmember
  • For career services professionals.

    Is your office interested in expanding the services it offers? Are you challenged with doing more with less? Would you like to elevate your student staff’s skills and empower them to have a bigger impact?

    Join Mary T. Calhoon, associate director of the Career Studio at the University of Nevada, Reno, to learn how to implement effective peer education in your career center. Calhoon runs a comprehensive training and development curriculum for a team of 18 peer coaches, who handle almost 4,000 drop-in visits each year. In this course, she teaches you how to get started with peer-led career coaching at your institution. Examine the curriculum development process required to design a sound peer mentoring program, from ideation to execution, including steps for gaining buy-in from stakeholders. Evaluate the type and scope of peer education that best fits your campus. Learn how to set up and manage a peer team capable of providing high-quality career coaching, walking step-by-step through the process of planning, hiring, training, conducting assessment, and delivering ongoing professional development. This course prepares you to harness the power of peers to take your career center to brand new places while recognizing operational efficiencies, empowering students, and improving overall organizational outcomes.

    Following this program, you will be able to:

    • Make the case for implementing a peer coaching program;
    • Identify required skills and competencies of a peer coach;
    • Explore the scope of services offered by peer coaches;
    • Examine training and development guidelines; and
    • Use the curriculum development process to design a peer coaching program.
    • Units

      Unit One: Develop a Vision and Hire your Peer Team​

      Following this session, you will be able to:

      • Gain buy-in for the idea of starting a peer coaching team in your career center;
      • Develop and implement your vision for a peer coaching team; and  
      • Formulate steps to hire a formidable team.

      Unit Two: Design and Deliver Initial Training​

      Following this session, you will be able to:

      • Create a vision and goals for training the peer coaching team;
      • Synthesize new strategies and techniques for training; and
      • Design an engaging and comprehensive initial training curriculum.

      Unit Three: Make Training an Ongoing Cycle

      Following this session, you will be able to:

      • Teach research-based methods for effective peer coaching;
      • Create a year-round schedule of support and ongoing training; and
      • Design assessment tools and strategies to help you make the case for peer career education.
    • Presenter

      Mary T. Calhoon

      Mary T. Calhoon, Associate Director of Career Education, University of Nevada, Reno

      Mary T. Calhoon is associate director of career education for the University of Nevada, Reno. In 2013, she was hired to create and co-lead a new career center serving more than 20,000 students. Today, the Nevada Career Studio is a vibrant center of career development, faculty collaborations, and employer partnerships reaching hundreds of students every week. Calhoon has presented at NACE, MPACE, and NASPA about this innovative studio model for career services, and her work on peer education has appeared in the NACE Journal. Calhoon holds a master of education from the University of Hawaii at Manoa and a bachelor of arts from Amherst College. Prior to the University of Nevada, she served as a high school English teacher for four years in Wahiawa, Hawaii, and as a Teach For America corps member.

    • How You Will Learn

      Asynchronous, virtual programming through the NACE Learning Platform.

    • Certification Credits

      Continuing Education Clock Hours:

      BCC – 3 clock hours


      BCC – NACE is an approved provider by the Center for Credentialing and Education, Inc. for Board Certified Coach Credentialing.

    Questions? Contact the NACE Professional Development team via email or phone, 610.625.1026.