Friday, October 18, 2013

I want an interview, don't you?

Professional Attire
'Tis the season for job hunting. Whether you are seeking on-campus employment, an internship or co-op, or full-time big kid jobs, fall is the prime season for recruitment. The past three years, I have been used to the process. It starts with applying online, attending job fairs and waiting on the selection process to be complete so I knew what I would be doing next spring or summer. This time around, it is a little different.

I am now on the hunt for that "big girl job". But, I have come to find out the process is not quite as simple as looking for internships. There are many more factors, numbers and details that make the selection more competitive, more vigorous and more exhausting. However, as I have detailed in previous posts, there are some things I have come to look for in potential full-time employers. Knowing those details makes it much easier!

Just as I look for ways to stand out to a company and help them see my greatest assets, you must do that too. Here are some tips I have about the application and interview process after wondering yesterday's College of Food, Agricultural and Environmental Sciences Career Fair and talking with other students doing the same thing.

Caroline Weihl portfolio
  • Compile your materials. You need to bring different supporting documents depending on the situation. For applying online via email, I always attach a personalized cover letter and resume. At a job fair, always bring copies of your resume to give to recruiters. Even if you have already applied online, they take notes on the hard copy you provide. Business cards are a plus as well, especially when more than one representative is working the booth. Once you reach the interview stage, it might be handy to have a portfolio of your work samples and other materials that can visually support your claims you made at the career fair or phone interview.
  • Research what YOU want in a company. Self reflection is important to weigh your talents, skills, goals and requirements of an employer. Make a list of the qualities you are looking for, from location, salary and culture to sector of the industry, benefits and growth potential.
  • Find matching companies. After you have compiled research of what you want and need, start searching. If you know you would be more happy working for a nonprofit organization, why is a private company in your saved jobs?

Sunday, October 6, 2013

Who will you become?

It is remarkable to think that it is already halfway through my fall semester of senior year. Time sure goes by quickly when you are having fun! As I begin interviewing and concluding many activities through this semester and school year, there is one underlying question that I ask myself.

Who am I becoming?

Change is a natural occurrence experienced by all. From interests, style, personality and future ambitions, people change. It can be subtle or significant. But, not all change is self-driven. Some is influenced. Much of that influence is from the people you spend your time with.

I have learned through different experiences that you become more like the people you spend most time around. That is why to cultivate the most personal growth, you should surround yourself around others smarter, more humble, more ambitious and more successful than yourself. They can teach you things, and you can learn.

Dad's Weekend Alpha Xi DeltaBeing a leader is not just learning, but also sharing and teaching your knowledge. Therefore, you should not just surround yourself with others greater than you, but others who you can help develop. This weekend, I was surrounded by many great people.

On Saturday, Psi chapter of Alpha Xi Delta held our Dad's Weekend event. Our dad's joined us for dinner and to watch the OSV vs. Northwestern football game! It was quite enjoyable, even though the venue was almost too small for all of us. My dad came down for the evening after working cattle all afternoon. Sometimes, I don't appreciate his expertise and passion as much as I should. But when I spend more time talking with him about it, I see where I got my interests from. It was also fun for him and the other dads to mingle and the sisters to be sincerely excited at the gathering.