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Human resources training brings skills, opportunities

Click to enlarge Human resources training brings skills, opportunities

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Shannon Baker, of Sanford, works with the public in her job as a financial services officer for the ... (more)

Click to enlarge Human resources training brings skills, opportunities

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Shannon Baker

Click to enlarge Human resources training brings skills, opportunities

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Nancy Whalen


SANFORD — Nancy Whalen loves working with people. At UPS, where she has worked for 32 years, employees are rotated through the company’s departments to become more familiar with its operations. A few years ago, she was rotated into the company’s Human Resources Department.

“I loved it,” she said. “I decided human resources work was for me.”

Whalen, a Sanford resident, enrolled at Central Carolina Community College and earned her Associate in Applied Science in Human Resources Management in 2005. She worked as an HR supervisor for five years, but still rotates among the departments at UPS, in Raleigh. Currently, she’s an Industrial Engineering supervisor, but her HRM training still serves her well.

“The skills you learn in Human Resources Management are people skills — you use them no matter what you’re in,” said Whalen, who serves on the advisory board for Central Carolina’s HRM program. “Employee training and development is ongoing. Even in a downturn in the economy, companies still have to have those things done. The need for HR Management doesn’t go away.”

Human Resources Management is about people, the most valuable asset of any business, regardless of its size, according to George Clayton, HRM lead instructor at Central Carolina C.C.

Clayton was an HR manager at a manufacturing company for 25 years before joining Central Carolina’s faculty, so he understands the important role an HR manager plays in the success of a company. As a result the college’s HRM program emphasizes real-world business situations so that students gain “hands-on” experience in working with employees. After graduation, they can find employment in areas such as staffing, recruitment, training, benefit administration, employee relations, and safety education.

Central Carolina is one of only two community colleges in the state offering the HR Management program entirely online beginning in 2008. Shannon Baker, of Sanford, earned her HRM degree by taking most of her classes online, while working and caring for her two daughters. Baker earned degrees in Accounting and Business Administration at Central Carolina before deciding to earn a Human Resources Management degree. She said her HRM training is an asset in her work as a financial services officer for the State Employees Credit Union.

“Human Resources ties into everything a company is responsible for doing,” she said. “It’s about helping people, and, as the FSO, I use those skills to work with customers.”

Opportunities are waiting for those with HR Management training, Clayton said. People with good communication skills, who can establish effective working relationships, and who are good at multi-tasking, can find successful, satisfying careers in this field. For more information, contact him at (919) 718-7446 or by email at: