Rusty Anderson serves as the director of Career Services at The University of Southern Mississippi. Recently, Anderson took a few moments to reflect on his current responsibilities and outside interests in a question-and-answer format.
Q: What is your hometown and educational background?
A: I am originally from Gideon, Missouri but consider Hattiesburg my hometown now. I have a BS degree from Southern Miss in Social and Rehabilitation Services and a MS from Southern Miss in Counseling Psychology.
Q: How long have you worked at Southern Miss and what brought you here?
A: I returned to Southern Miss in 1995 after working at Millsaps College.
Q: How did you become Director of Career Services?
A: I worked three years as a counselor in the Career Development Center at Southern Miss, then as director at Millsaps College for 11 years. I interviewed for my current position here and got the job.
Q: Define your role here at Southern Miss please.
A: I oversee the daily operation of a comprehensive centralized career services office including student employment, career counseling, job location, cooperative education and placement services. I supervise 12 staff members, handle budget planning and financial management.
Q: What are the biggest challenges you face in this role with the university?
A: Getting students to realize the importance of taking advantage of all the resources available to them through the office to assist in the job search.
Q: What is the most important advice you and your staff have for graduating seniors?
A: Work to build your credentials for the resumé during all of your collegiate career and develop a solid professional network.
Q: When you’re not at work, how do you like to spend your free time?
A: I collect baseball cards (over 22,000) and I enjoy riding on the rails to trails. I am also a big fan of the Golden Eagles and attend many sporting events.
Q: Who has been the most influential person in your life and why?
A: My father and mother. My father taught me the importance of integrity, honesty and a solid work ethic. My mother taught me to enjoy life by having a sense of humor and establishing genuine relationships. Both were teachers.
Q: If you did not hold your current position, how else do you think you would be making a living?
A: I think I would be working in human resources.