Defiance College creates Jacket Summit to bring together business leaders and professors

July 12, 2021

DEFIANCE, Ohio - When establishing Jacket Journey, the new career readiness program on campus, Defiance College administration met with numerous area business leaders to ascertain the skills and qualities employers want to see in their potential employees. The result was the creation of the first annual Jacket Summit - a virtual event that looks to bring together local, state, and national business leaders in a Career Readiness Call for Action. Dr. Jeremy Taylor, dean of the Institute for Career Readiness and Lifelong Learning, notes, "It is important because we know that interactions between business leaders and faculty members who teach their discipline are rare."

"We are very excited about our inaugural Jacket Summit on July 15," says Dr. Richanne C. Mankey, Defiance College president." It presents an opportunity to bring together DC faculty and employers so they can better coordinate the types of career skills actually needed on the job. The summit is truly an employer's chance to directly impact our career readiness curriculum. Our ultimate goal is to make it seamless for our graduates - and their employers - as they transition into the workforce."

Joretta Nelson, Ph.D., vice chairman and founder of MTN, will be the opening keynote speaker for Jacket Summit. Nelson is known on campuses and at Credo as a dedicated student success advocate. Whether advising presidents, leading strategic planning, or consulting on academic and student success projects, Nelson keeps student success at the center of her work. Nelson developed and launched Credo's unique Moving the Needle project in 2011 - a comprehensive two-year student success project that serves to transform campus culture, building the on-campus infrastructure, collaboration, and buy-in needed to sustain higher levels of retention for an institution. Her early background as both a faculty member and an administrator provided a framework for her focus on the research and successful strategies that help students thrive.

The Jacket Summit is an extension of the College's Jacket Journey program. They are a part of Defiance College's newly created Institute for Career Readiness and Lifelong Learning - which also houses the career development office. This DC Institute helps students strengthen their resumes, improve their job interview skills, find internships, and more. The College's Jacket Journey program aims to weave soft skill education into all aspects of campus life. Soft skill education includes having the ability to adapt, think creatively, and then communicate ideas clearly. The Institute looks to continually improve on Defiance College's already impressive 98% job placement rate. More information about the Jacket Summit can be found at

Chartered in 1850, Defiance College is an independent, liberal arts-based institution in Northwest Ohio offering more than 40 undergraduate programs of study as well as graduate programs in education and business. Defiance College has received national recognition for its educational experience of service and engagement. The College is guided by the four pillars of its mission: To Know, To Understand, To Lead, and To Serve. The College website is