Developing Connections


Developing Connections provides a ‘real-life’ experience to ‘see’ CFLE content areas in action with participating agencies. Held each fall and spring semester, this professional-networking event fosters connections between HDFS students, alumni, and professionals through poster presentations and on-site internship interviews. All HDFS majors are encouraged to attend each semester.

As an interactive professional development opportunity, students hear a keynote address by an experienced professional, view poster presentations by local family-serving agencies, meet one-on-one with professionals and current HDFS interns, interview on-site for internships, and network with peers, faculty, alumni and professionals.

To foster networking among peers, current HDFS interns present a poster at the Developing Connections event. The poster includes information about their internship placement site – the organization’s mission, provision of services, location, contact information, and specific duties or activities performed by the intern. Interns look forward to the opportunity to highlight their experiences in the field and to share insight with HDFS students who are about to embark on their internship experience.

Developing Connections is integrated with the HDFS curriculum. Students enrolled in HDFS 3900: Professional Development in HDFS are required to attend and participate in on-site interviews. Taken the semester immediately before the internship, HDFS 3900 includes self-assessment activities to match goals with the activities and mission of potential internship sites. Students create and polish a resume in order to take advantage of opportunities to meet and interview with potential internship sites. Other experiences in the course prepare students to attain an internship placement and to work in an internship setting.

Students consistently indicate the significance of Developing Connections. The event allows them to explore opportunities as emerging HDFS professionals. Students are more confident after an on-site interview and networking with professionals.

HDFS Professional Day
Spring 2018 IMBG5347


Tuesday, February 20, 2018

Union 202 - Lenhart Grand Ballroom
Bowling Green State University





For more information regarding Developing Connections, contact:

Stephanie Blessing | | 419-372-8908

"Overall I found the Developing Connections event to be extremely beneficial for all students in our major. It gave veteran students like me a platform to express our passion for the organizations we interned with, as well as the opportunity to showcase the knowledge I gained about the organization I interned with. Furthermore, I found it to be extremely well organized and gave students and organizations the opportunity to network and discuss the field. Developing Connections has lead me to become even more curious and excited to see where I may end up in terms of my first position in the HDFS field." 

Tatum Swallow '15, HDFS major

"The Developing Connections event I attended this past Fall was fantastic!  During the event I was able to meet and interview four potential teachers for our Center. I met three other students that did not get a chance to interview with us, however; they visited our booth and either contacted me later or left their resume with us to contact them. I was extremely impressed with the quality of students I interviewed. As of today, I have hired two of the BGSU students from the event and have offered two others an internship with our Center. 

I look forward to coming to another Developing Connection event! Thank you for helping the students really prepare for a career/work experience!"

Erica Sleek, Owner/Director
All About The Kids Learning Center, LLC







Patrice Powers-Barker, MA, CFLE

Extension Educator, Family and Consumer Sciences

OSU Extension, Lucas County

Patrice Powers-Barker, CFLE implements Ruby Green Smiths’ description of Family and Consumer Sciences (FCS) “where science and art meet life and practices.” Patrice is an Extension Educator for Family and Consumer Sciences for Lucas County in Toledo, Ohio. She works with families on topics such as: health and wellness, household budgeting, mindfulness, local foods and universal design. Patrice loves spending time with family, treasuring the four seasons of Northwest Ohio and appreciating the abundance of her local community.