Interview: Dr. Angela Joyner on Jump Starting Your Career at Radford University

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By: Wesley Wallace |

Dr. Angela Joyner, Executive Director of the Center for Career and Talent Development, hopes to help Radford students navigate the growing difficulty graduates face during their first job search.

Throughout her career, Dr. Joyner always had a willingness to learn, take advantage of opportunities, and find solutions to problems. However, many college graduates who share Dr. Joyner’s work ethic are having a difficult time securing employment after graduating from college.

Research gathered by the National Association of Colleges and Employers found that the average college graduate spends 7.4 months looking for jobs after graduation. The research also discovered that employers are dissatisfied with the lack of student “career readiness” and dislike the idea of having to get them prepared for their job positions.

Dr. Joyner and her team of career professionals combat this problem by helping students plan their future careers. This includes learning interviewing skills, crafting cover letters, and applying for internships.

Research gathered by the National Association of Colleges and Employers found that the average college graduate spends 7.4 months looking for jobs after graduation.

Since coming to Radford University in 2016, Dr. Joyner looks forward to continuing her work in helping students achieve their career goals.

Before coming to RU, Dr. Joyner worked as an Associate brand manager at the multinational toy company Mattel, where she assisted in the toy launches of SpongeBob Square Pants, CatDog, and Rugrats.

She also served as the General Manager for the packaged foods company ConAgra Foods and was recognized as one of “The 25 Most Influential African Americans in Health Food Industries” by Black Health Magazine. 

With the knowledge that she has acquired throughout her career, Dr. Joyner provides leadership coaching for women within her leadership practice, The Wonder Loft.

After living in California for the majority of her childhood, Dr. Joyner’s life changed when her parents decided to move to North Carolina. The transition allowed Dr. Joyner to obtain her Bachelor of Science in Textile & Apparel Management from North Carolina State University.

Additionally, her interests in both marketing and psychology led her to acquire her marketing MBA from Duke University and her Ph.D. in Organizational Leadership from The Chicago School of Professional Psychology.

Angela Joyner

The Interview

The Tartan spoke with Dr. Joyner on Tuesday, Sept. 24. During the interview, we asked Dr. Joyner about the importance of applying for both paid and unpaid internships.

Whether the internship is paid or unpaid, it will appear impressive to your future bosses and will give you an advantage over other applicants.

Dr. Joyner said, “Internships are crucial when building up your resume. When an employer looks at your resume, your internship position instantly tells them that you have applied your classroom knowledge to professional scenarios within the workplace. Whether the internship is paid or unpaid, it will appear impressive to your future bosses and will give you an advantage over other applicants.”

The Tartan also asked Dr. Joyner about the process she uses when selecting specific businesses to attend Career Fair on campus.

She said, “A plethora of factors go into deciding which businesses we want to attend Career Fair. Usually, myself and other members within The Center for Career & Talent Development meet and look at the companies that previously came to campus. … We also factor in student anticipation, different majors & minors, and aim to diversify the fair with as many employers as we can”.

The Tartan asked Dr. Joyner about her plans for the school year and what she hopes to accomplish professionally, now that we’re already six weeks into the fall semester.

She said, “As a problem-solver, I want to work with my team in finding solutions to previous plans and work to bring new job opportunities for students. Personally, I want to continue to be a good wife, a good mother to my 2-year old daughter, and potentially write another book”.

For more faculty spotlights and University news, stay connected with your Tartan newspaper.

Photo Credit: (Dr. Angela Joyner)

Featured Image: (Dr. Angela Joyner, Executive Director for The Center for Career & Talent Development, speaking at Ohio State.)

Wesley Wallace

Wesley Wallace is a Sophomore student at Radford University. He aims to acquire his Bachelor of Science in Theatre with a minor in entrepreneurship. In addition to writing for the Tartan, he previously served as the Campus Relations Chair for Radford's NAACP and maintains a student conduct board position within Radford's Office of Student Standards & Conduct.