Last week I was invited to speak on a panel of UNCG Alumni student. I’m honored that the Career Services Department contacted me because I love to help out my alma mater and give advice to people who are now going through the same things I’ve already gone through. The panel consisted of me and two other alumni.
Now normally I don’t dress business professional/casual for work. My company is pretty laid back for the most part so we dress casual. For this event, I decided to put my professional clothes to use since I hardly use them anymore.
I was very nervous when I arrived at the event 10 minutes early (which I thought was late) and the other panelists didn’t arrive yet. The event started 20 minutes late because some of the panelists were held up with work, which is understandable.
I had an amazing time answering questions related to interviewing and the job search process. With the job market being the way that it is, it can get very discouraging when you find opportunities and you are being denied. Just remember there is little time to be waisted getting emotional on not getting that particular job/internship. Send an email asking why you were not chosen and move on to the next.
My basic advice for my younger Spartans:
1. Get involved in campus clubs and organizations. You can use that experience towards your professional experience.
2. Find and work at least one internship before graduation college. This will give you real life work experience and it will look great on your resume. I did an internship the summer after my sophomore year in college and I got college credit for it. Usually at UNCG they wouldn’t accept anyone other than seniors in the class to get credit for an internship that I took but I met with my professor and he let me in that class so that was one less worry when I got to my senior year.
3. Utilize your school’s career services department! I cannot stress how important that is. Sign up for mock interviews and bring in your resume and cover letter to be rebuilt.
4. Meet and network. Do this while you are in school, at work, at your internship, everywhere. You never know who you may know that could get your foot in the door so try not to make any enemies.
5. Don’t give up when the job searching/interview process gets hard. It may seem impossible but it is not. It took me eight months before I secured my job before graduation.
Never give up on your dreams, even when it seems impossible.