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Student Spotlight: Randy Jennings

Randy Jennings is a current student in the on-campus master's program at Villanova, who, like many of us, has taken an unsual path into human resources. He was raised in a small town in rural Louisiana and went to school at Indian Bayou High School where he graduated with 19 students.  During his Junior/Senior year he decided he wasn’t ready to go to college and joined the Army as an Electronic Repairman.  I left for FT Jackson, SC for basic training on 19 July 1990 and this is where everything he thought he knew became a distant memory. In the first 6 years of his Army career he had been assigned to the military police in Ft. Riley, deployed to Desert Storm and had spent 3 years in Hawaii in a light infantry unit. During the next 4 years he had the chance to be in Talent Acquisition in West Virginia and a instructor in Ft. Sill, OK. 

In 2000 Randy was presented the opportunity to go back and become a permanent member of the Army’s Talent Acquisition Branch known as the United States Army Recruiting Command.  He felt that this would be the right fit for his talents as a Soldier. Over the next seven years Randy was in Springfield, MO, Kansas City, MO and Overland Park, Kansas. During that time, he lead over 60 employees and managed over 2,200 young men and women to serve in the Army and Army Reserves. 

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Last Night's VU SHRM Happy Hour Was a Success!

Thanks to everyone who joined VU SHRM for our 2015-2016 kick-off happy hour! We had a fun time at Gullifty's in Bryn Mawr with some new and familiar faces!


Wired Wednesday: How Technology Will Impact Millennials at Work

By Dinah Wisenberg Brin 8/25/2015 for SHRM.

As the Millennial generation heads into its prime family and career-building years, its members are expected to emerge as pragmatic spenders—seeking experiences over material status symbols while continuing to rely heavily on technology to research, plan, collaborate, and make life easier at home and at work.

And HR will need to continue to adjust from the late 20th century workplace model, experts say.

Gone are the days of working in one location from nine to five. This generation, which is the most connected generation in history—to technology, to their peers, to information—will need to be managed differently.

That’s because Millennials, or Generation Y—adults now roughly ages 18 to 34—are projected to exceed the number of Baby Boomers this year to become the largest U.S. generation at more than 75 million members, according to 2015 figures from the U.S. Census Bureau.

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HR Around the World: Sweden

This month, we are focusing on HR in Sweden. If you have experience in a country outside of the US that you would like to share on the HRD blog, please email:

The biggest aspect that people in the US tend to hear about Sweden is its educational system and how they far outrank many developed countries across the world. In addition to a strong educational system, Sweden is also viewed highly in terms of its HR and work benefits.

Sweden boasts an impressive average unemployment rate, hovering at 5.87% from 1980 - 2015. The strong value placed on work-life balance and the focus on attracting and maintaining strong employees helps to make Sweden one of the best places to work.

Did you know that Sweden...

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Villanova HRD Mentor Program - Apply Now!

We are happy to announce the start of the 2015-2016 Mentoring Program supported by the Villanova Human Resource Development community! We are currently looking for Mentors and Mentees to particpate in this event, read on to see how you can get involved in this year's program!

WHAT: The mentor program is pairs students in the HRD program with HR professionals based on matching interests and experiences to maximize relationships and the benefit each participant receives. Once paired you will plan monthly meetings - in person or over the phone. Mentor-Mentee pairs will be given discussion questions and topics to guide their meetings and stimulate productive conversations. 

HOW: Please email your application (see attachments below) to by Friday, September 25th if you are interested in being a part of this professional development program, or have any questions. 

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The St. Thomas of Villanova Celebration is a campus-based weekend celebration honoring St. Thomas of Villanova, the 16th-century Augustinian bishop of Valencia, Spain, and patron of the University. This year marks the 10th anniversary of the celebration and Day of Service, an annual event that brings together nearly 5,000 students, faculty, staff, alumni and their families working in partnership with neighborhood agencies to perform service throughout Greater Philadelphia and beyond. Please join us in celebrating the week of Sept. 7th-12th, by participating in the Day of Service with VU SHRM on Saturday September 12th. To sign up click HERE and register yourself as a volunteer with VU SHRM in the drop down menu. And learn more about the Villanova Day of Service watch the video below featuring the President, Father Peter Donohue.


Follow the Day of Service on Twitter for more information!



Have you joined VU SHRM yet? If not you are missing out on an awesome networking and professional development opportunity! 

WHAT: Student run chapter of Society of Human Resources Management (SHRM) for the HRD program. SHRM is the world's largest associatin devoted to human resources management and represetns more than 250,000 members in over 140 countries! Affiliated with local chapters includeing Philadelphia SHRM, Greater Valley Forge Human Resources Association, and Chester County HRA. We put on social, philanthropic and professional development events like Resume Reviews, Happy Hours, Excel Basics Training, HR webinars, and participation in Villanova's Day of Service to name a few!

WHO: Online and on-campus students in the Human Resources Development program at Villanova. 

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As we kick off the new school year the HRD office would like to welcome new and returning students to the beginning of the 2015-2016 school year! If you are on campus please feel free to stop by the HRD office in St. Mary's Hall (West Campus) Suite 119 to introduce yourself, ask any questions, and get to know some of our full-time faculty and staff. Cheers to a great new school year! 


Where Marijuana Is Legal HR Policy Needs to Adjust (

We live in a changing time. After more than seven decades of prohibition, cannabis is becoming legal in more states and countries. Consumers across three generations are finding the plant and utilizing it as a recreational substance, as well as a cure for many different ailments.

As of now, 23 states and the District of Columbia allow for some type of legalized marijuana consumption. Whether you agree or disagree with the movement, wide-scale cannabis legalization is upon us.

So, how can employers integrate cannabis into the framework of employee relations? This topic speaks to me specifically as a business leader and co-founder of a tech company in the cannabis industry. Prior to entering the cannabis industry I guided corporate structural change for some of the world’s top brands.

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Welcome New 2015-2016 Graduate Assistants!

Welcome back to school! As we start our first day of classes we are happy to introduce our 4 new graduate assistants! Hallie Thompson, Alex Miller, Nick Kruger and Rita Snell are joining the HRD program as GA's this year in addition to our GA's from last year: Samantha Khan, Rebeca Pareja, and Patty van Kleef.

Hallie is has been with us since last Spring and is returing to Villanova as a second year student. She is from Sharon, PA and graduated from Penn State University with a B.S. in Biobehavioral Health. Hallie currently works as a Customer Service Representative at Certainteed Corp. and is most interested in IO Psychology, talent development and benefits. In her free time she competes with her dragon boat team around the Greater Philadelhia Area!

Alex is also returning for his second year of classes. He is from Weschester, Pa and completed his undergrad at Weschester University in Psychology. He is currently an HR Compensation Intern at ACTS Retirement Life Communities and his main interests lie in compensation, employee relations, and organizational development. On New Year's Eve not only will Alex be ringing in the New Year, but also celebrating his birthday!

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Wired Wednesday: 5 Things You Didn’t Know About Using Personal Email at Work

Hillary Clinton is in trouble for mixing up her personal and business accounts—and you could get in trouble too.

Hillary Clinton has come under scrutiny for exclusively using her personal email account for all of her work communications when she was secretary of state, according to a report in the New York Times. That’s actually a huge problem. Under federal law, Clinton was required to preserve all of her communications.

But you don’t have to be a former secretary of state and favorite for the Democratic presidential nomination for your work emails to be preserved for posterity, and someone might be interested in their contents: your boss.

Here’s what you should know about the privacy of your work emails—namely, that you don’t have any...

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One Book Villanova is a campus-wide effort spanning the academic year that presents to the university a book worthy of close reading, discussion, course adoption, and the stimulation of dialog among all members of the campus community. This year, the Graduate Programs in HRD will be starting our own program-wide One Book! Each year, we will select a book that we believe will inspire conversation across all courses in the HRD Program and will add to the learning of all students and faculty throughout the program. 


Insight from inside Google that will transform how you live and lead. This insight is the heart of WORK RULES!, a compelling and surprisingly playful manifesto with the potential to change how we work and live.

Drawing on behavioral economics and human psychology, Bock provides teaching examples from a range of industries. He also reveals why Google is consistently rated one of the best places to work, sharing counterintuitive principles that are easy to put into action.

WORK RULES! shows how to stri

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Poll: What is Your Favorite Summertime Activity


Summer Webinar Series: Planning your Workforce...Just like Dancing with the Stars with John Baldino

Wednesday, June 3, 2015 from 7 to 8pm (EST) 

What does workforce planning have to do with Dancing with the Stars?  Everything.  The goal of the session is to explain workforce planning as a tool for strategic business development using the success of Dancing with the Stars as a case study model.  The drivers behind securing talent, both internally and externally, and the marriage of talent management and workforce planning will be explained.  Workforce planning as a requirement of demand projection will be dicussed and the methodologies of addressing gap analyses – growing, borrowing, employing, partnering and reducing.  The utilization of the Dancing with the Stars case study will help to anchor these concepts and provide concrete assimilation.

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Happy Memorial Day Weekend!




HRD Graduation 2015 Reminders!

Congratulations to all of those who will be graduating this May! We have a lovely ceremony planned to celebrate your amazing accomplishments with friends and family this Saturday, May 16th, 2015! Here are some reminders to help ensure things go smoothly!

University Commencement Ceremony (optional)

Friday, May 15, 2015

4:00 p.m.

Villanova Stadium

Graduates report to the Pavilion no later than 3:15 p.m.
Each graduate will receive TWO (2) tickets to this event. Additional first come, first served bleacher seating will be available for unlimited non-ticketed guests. 

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Alumni Spotlight: Chris Konnick

Chris Konnick currently serves as a HR Business Partner for IMS Consulting Group and is responsible for supporting the immigration process, partnering with the talent development and placement team, managing the performance review process, and employee relations.  Prior to his current role, Chris was a HR Analyst contractor for IMS Health, a graduate assistant at Villanova, and President of the Villanova University SHRM Student Chapter. Before pursuing his career in Human Resources, Chris worked as a sales floor and logistics manager for Target. Chris holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Business from Penn State University and a Master of Science in Human Resource Development from Villanova University. 






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HRD 35th Anniversary Gala - TOMORROW!


Wired Wednesday: Want More Women Working In Tech? Let Them Stay Home

By Issie Lapowsky

Everyone has their theories about why there aren’t more women in technology. Some say it’s that women aren’t studying computer science and therefore aren’t applying for jobs in the field. Others say it’s due to a certain degree of bias in an industry where predominantly male leaders hire predominantly male employees because they see similarities between themselves and their hires. 

But Katharine Zaleski and Milena Berry say there’s another reason, which is that tech companies aren’t giving women—particularly mothers—the flexibility they need to raise a family and pursue their careers at the same time. “There are two bad choices for women: go back to the office full-time or slowly lose your career because you can’t go back to the office full-time,” Zaleski, a former editor at The Huffington Post, explains. 

Which is why the two working mothers decided to launch PowerToFly, a job site that connects women with employers who are willing to let them work remotely. The site launched in August, targeted primarily toward women in tech. Since then, it’s had tens of thousands of women across multiple industries register for the site and apply for jobs with nearly 700 big-name employers like Buzzfeed and Hearst. Just last week the company launched its own app, PowerToFly Connect, which serves as a sort of social network and news site for this new community of remote workers. “We launched strong with our job matching platform,” Berry, former CTO of a non-profit, says, “and now we’re creating a media platform around these issues for women.” 

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