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College of Hospitality, Retail and Sport Management

Faculty and Staff

Erica J. Lake, M.S.

Title: Director, Corporate Engagement
College of Hospitality, Retail and Sport Management
Email: erlake@mailbox.sc.edu
Phone: 803-576-6517
LinkedIn: My LinkedIn profile
Erica Lake, director of corporate engagement, College of Hospitality, Retail and Sport Management Office of Corporate Engagement

Background

M.S., Counselor Education (Student Affairs), 2003, Mississippi State University
B.A., Communication (Public Relations), 2001, Mississippi State University

Erica Lake is the director of Corporate Engagement in the College of Hospitality, Retail and Sport Management. She facilitates corporate partner engagement with students, faculty and staff in the college through the executive guest lecture program, the internship and professional development program and the annual Experience Expo Career & Study Abroad Fair. Prior to Lake's work in the college, she served more than eight years as the associate director for employer relations for the University of South Carolina Career Center. Lake has many years of experience building relationships with employers and helping them to connect with University of South Carolina students for internships and full-time positions. She has managed an online recruiting platform that provides networking opportunities for students to connect with employers through job postings, career fairs, on-campus interviews and specialized networking events.  

Lake is dedicated to her profession and serves on the 2019 – 2020 board of directors for the Southern Association of Colleges and Employers as president-elect. In this role, she is responsible for overseeing the strategic planning, standard operating procedures and by-laws committees for the 11-member board. She previously served SoACE as the director for targeted knowledge groups and has volunteered through the Employer Relations Knowledge Group.

Lake is a 2013 graduate of the National Association of Colleges and Employers (NACE) Management Leadership Institute and a 2014 graduate of Leadership Columbia. 

Lake is currently a doctoral student in the Educational Leadership Ph.D. program at the University of South Carolina. She is a two-time graduate of Mississippi State University with a Bachelor of Arts in Communications (public relations) and a Master of Science in Education (student affairs). She has presented on best practices in employer relations at both the National Association of Colleges and Employers annual meeting and the Southern Association of Colleges and Employers annual conference. She frequently consults with career services professionals about employer relations programs, policies and procedures.

Lake enjoys traveling, reading, and spending time with her husband, Dietrich, daughter, Jordin, and two sons, Sebastian and Austin. In addition, she is an avid SEC basketball and football enthusiast. 

Honors and awards

  • Southern Association of Colleges and Employers New Professional Award, 2012
  • Staff Chair, USC Provost’s Advisory Committee on Women’s Issues, 2013
  • Leadership Columbia, 2014

Professional affiliations and/or consulting experiences

  • Board of Directors, President-Elect, Southern Association of Colleges and Employers, 2019–2020  
  • Board of Directors, Target Knowledge Groups, Southern Association of Colleges and Employers, 2017–2018
  • Assistant Chair, Exhibitors and Sponsorships, Southern Association of Colleges and Employers Annual Conference 2016
  • Chair, Employer Relations Knowledge Group, Southern Association of Colleges and Employers, 2015
  • Certificate in Leadership, Institute for Leadership and Professional Excellence, Columbia College, 2014
  • Certificate in Professional Selling, Carew International, 2015
  • Connecting with Local and National Employers, Career Services Conference Presenter, Intern Bridge, 2015
  • Capitalizing on Your Employer Relationships, National Association of Colleges and Employers Annual Conference Presenter, 2013

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