CAREER TIPS FOR THE SUMMER

Career-Building Tips forAs the 2015 spring semester comes to an end, exams are in sight and summer’s beauty and warmth are in full view. While summer means no school (yay!), it also means you’re one step closer to graduation. First of all, you should enjoy the summer, you’ve EARNED the time off; but you also owe it to yourself to start developing your career. Working on your career doesn’t have to take the entire summer. If you spend at least an hour a day on your career development you can hit the ground running in the fall when you begin to look for full-time, part-time and/or internship opportunities.
Here are a few career-building tips you can use over the summer:

Identify your career goal

The first step in starting your career is being able to articulate what you want to do. The tricky part is getting to that decision. Use a strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats (SWOT) analysis to start this process. Invite your friends and family to also conduct a SWOT analysis of you. They may see things that you don’t see or don’t want to accept and their insights are valuable. The SWOT analysis is the beginning of understanding what you would be most successful doing.

Learn more about the industries of interest

If you were able to find your field of interest that’s great, if not, then try to create a list of all the fields you’re interested in. Once you have that information, the next step is research. Your research should be focused and industry specific. Search for required skills and capabilities, current and future opportunities, gaps and needs, and emerging thought leadership. These insights will provide a glimpse into the needs and can help you to position yourself as the right candidate.

Create and share content

Creating and sharing personal curated content demonstrates your knowledge and interest in a particular field. Fortunately you live in an age where you don’t have to worry about out who will publish this content. Social media (e.g. LinkedIn, Twitter, Facebook and WordPress) allows you to easily publish this information. Share compelling and thoughtful content that can demonstrate your value, knowledge and skills. For example, if you are in Finance and interested in trading; create and share content related to the directions of trading. Your content will be open to the world, it is your online “footprint”, spend the time to make the content relevant and compelling if you want to stand out.

Engage and network

Find groups that share your interests and engage and network with the members. You should also consider joining groups that can enhance your skills. Toastmasters for example, can help with speech writing and delivering. Remember to utilize the contacts you meet on your summer job, buy coffee if you must, but engage, engage, engage. If you don’t have a summer job then volunteer, try idealist.org to search for thousands of volunteer opportunities.

STAND BY: IT’S JOB SEARCH BOOT CAMP TIME

Full Boot Camp Flyer Spring 2015-1Are you about to graduate or graduated up to 3 three years ago? Are you wondering how to demonstrate your value, skills and capabilities to get the opportunities that interest you? What about your resume, does it demonstrate a good impression of you? If you have these or similar career related questions, then the SCDC’s Job Search Boot Camp is the perfect opportunity for you to get answers.

Job Search Boot Camp is a 6 weeks career development series for Baruch seniors and recent alumni (1-3 years post grad). The series carries participants through career guiding information that will help them create a firm strategy for tackling the job search. The career development series immerses participants in important career enhancing topics such as networking, time management, personal branding and promotion, social media and interviewing.

Job Search Boot Camp will be held on April 1, 15, 22, 29 and May 6, 13. Do not delay, sign up at https://baruchcsm.symplicity.com/students/. Remember, individuals who attend job search groups find positions four times faster than those who don’t. See you there!

SCDC Correspondent: Meeckel Beecher, Marketing Communications Specialist
Meeckel is a Corporate Communication graduate student at Baruch College. His professional interest is in Content Development, Strategic Communication and Visual Communication. Meeckel is an avid reader, writer and lifelong learner. When not working, you will find him walking and happily getting lost on the streets of New York.

 

3 REASONS WHY ATTENDING THE CAREER WEEKS SERIES WILL BE COMPLETELY WORTH IT!

Career Weeks Series Blog-1The Starr Career Development Center will be hosting its 8th annual Career Weeks series from March 26 – April 30. Career Weeks is an opportunity for students to learn more about career opportunities while gaining industry insights from experienced professionals. You will be able to network with professionals in marketing and advertising, computer information systems, government and nonprofit and the arts and sciences. The information from the panelist is always insightful and relevant. If you need more convincing then here are 3 reasons why attending the Career Weeks series will be completely worth it.

1. The professional panels: The SCDC is known for securing top professional speakers. Last year’s Career Week series had representatives from Facebook, JP Morgan, Kognitio Interactive, Google and many other innovative and interesting companies. These panelists are seasoned professionals who were eager to share their experiences with students. Attending one of the panels may be an opportunity for you to meet someone from a company you are interested in. You will definitely be receiving inside information. This is your chance to gain a greater understanding of a company or an industry.

2. The networking: One of the best things about SCDC’s panels is the conversation. Career Weeks isn’t a series of lectures; you’ve had enough of that in classes. Career Weeks is a series of conversations between professionals and students. The panelists will delve into many topics, including resumes and company culture. Students are free to ask questions, in fact, the SCDC encourages students to talk to the panelists. The SCDC is providing you with a captive audience of professionals for 2 hours. That is amazing!

3. The opportunities: Ever so often, the panelist share current and emerging trends and opportunities in their industries. This information can help students to gain a greater understanding of the direction of a particular industry. Students often leave with more information on industry needs as well as emerging opportunities. Knowing industry needs can inform a better understanding of recruiting practices. The panelists have also been willing to have one-on- ones with students and have in the past exchange their contact information.
Simply put, you won’t regret attending. Here are the dates:

  • Marketing and Advertising: March 26, 2015 – Room 14-270
  • Computer Information Systems: April 21, 2015 – Room 2-125
  • Government and Nonprofit: April 22, 2015 – Room 2125
  • Arts and Science Panel Career Panel: April 30, 2015 – Room 14-270
SCDC Correspondent: Meeckel Beecher, Marketing Communications Specialist
Meeckel is a Corporate Communication graduate student at Baruch College. His professional interest is in Content Development, Strategic Communication and Visual Communication. Meeckel is an avid reader, writer and lifelong learner. When not working, you will find him walking and happily getting lost on the streets of New York.

5 THINGS TO DO DURING THE WINTER BREAK

By Meeckel Beecher, Marketing Communications Specialist

5 things to doThe holidays are over and hopefully you had enough time to catch up with friends and family as well as had a chance to rest and relax. If you’re not taking classes during the winter semester then you have a few more weeks to look for job and internship opportunities and of course continue to relax. Here are 5 things that the SCDC recommends you should do over the winter break.

1. Define your career goals: This is the perfect opportunity for you to start thinking about your career goals. Take the time to do a SWOT analysis on yourself. What are your strengths? What jobs are you interested in? What industry would your degree best fit? This assessment will help you to be more strategic in your job and internship search. You can use Focus 2 on STARR Search to help with your self-assessment or you can schedule an appointment to see a career counselor at the SCDC.

2. Research opportunities: Start researching job and internship opportunities immediately. Be sure to use STARR Search to see what opportunities are posted through the SCDC. Keep your search organized by creating a folder to save job descriptions and other important information related to all of the jobs you’re interested in applying to. These job descriptions and other related information will be important when updating your resume and creating cover letters.

3. Update your resume: Change your resume to match as best as possible the requirements of the opportunities you’re going to apply to. Check your resume to ensure that you’ve used action words. Please avoid spelling, grammatical and formatting errors. Be consistent and remember to confirm that your qualifications match what the employers are looking for.

4. Have the SCDC review your resume: The SCDC is open during the winter break and staff is available to assist you. You can make an appointment through STARR Search or you can simply walk into our office. The SCDC is open on Mondays – Fridays from 9:00 a.m. through 5:00 p.m. Walk-ins are Tuesdays and Wednesdays from 3:00 p.m-5:00 p.m. Please arrive by 4:30 p.m.

5. Conduct an online mock interview: Prepare yourself for future interviews by using the Mock Interview Module on STARR Search. The module has over 1000 pre- recorded interview questions. You can use the module at your own convenience. A step-by-step guide on accessing the module can be found on the SCDC YouTube channel.

SCDC Correspondent: Meeckel Beecher, Marketing Communications Specialist
Meeckel is a Corporate Communication graduate student at Baruch College. His professional interest is in Reputation Management, Strategic Communication and Visual Communication. Meeckel is an avid reader, writer and lifelong learner. When not working, you will find him walking and happily getting lost on the streets of New York.

TIPS FROM TERRI THOMPSON’S DINING ETIQUETTE WORKSHOP

By Meeckel Beecher, Marketing Communications Specialist

Dining Etiquette PictureAt some point in your career, you will be invited to dine in a professional setting. Instead of dreading and trying to avoid it, the best approach is to prepare for it. Having a grasp of dining etiquette is important because it bolsters your personal brand. Etiquette knowledge can leave a positive impression on employers and colleagues who may be evaluating your social aptitude as well as measuring how well you would fit into their organization’s culture. Another plus is that basic understanding of etiquette will help you to focus on creating, engaging and participating in conversation with your hosts and colleagues.

Terri Thompson author of “Everyday Etiquette” was recently at Baruch College to coach students on the basics of dining etiquette. Using her usual humorous and engaging approach, Terri provided several do’s and don’ts to students. If you missed it, Terri will be back in the spring but until then, here are a few tips from her session:

1. Don’t overthink it. Overthinking can lead to nervousness and nervousness can lead to tomatoes flying and drinks spilling. If you make a mistake, handle it quietly.
2. Unfold napkin in half and place on your lap before you start eating.
3. Order food that is easy to eat. Food such as salads, fish and chicken are OK, avoid ribs and spaghetti they are messy.
4. Don’t order the most expensive items on the menu.
5. Don’t drink alcohol. If your host insists then one glass should be your limit.
6. Start eating by using your utensils from the outside in.
7. Always remember – solids on your left, liquids on your right.
8. Cut your food one piece at a time.
9. Eat your soup away from you.
10. Silverware goes on the plate and never back on the table.
11. Never speak with your mouth open.
12. Make eye contact throughout the meal.
13. Do not discuss controversial topics.
14. Thank the person who invited you before you leave.

SCDC Correspondent: Meeckel Beecher, Marketing Communications Specialist
Meeckel is a Corporate Communication graduate student at Baruch College. His professional interest is in Reputation Management, Strategic Communication and Visual Communication. Meeckel is an avid reader, writer and lifelong learner. When not working, you will find him walking and happily getting lost on the streets of New York.

PANEL EVENT: QUEER PEOPLE OF COLOR IN THE WORKPLACE

By Meeckel Beecher, Marketing Communications Specialist

LGBTHM QPOC Flyer

Baruch College is certainly a microcosm of New York City. Just like NYC, Baruch is one of the most diverse places in the United States. Our students come from over 170 countries and over 110 languages are spoken on campus. It is therefore no surprise that Baruch College aims to create a “Safe Zone” for its LGBT population. This “Safe Zone” is essentially an environment that promotes “an atmosphere of positivity, support, affirmation and acceptance and openness to members of the LGBT community.”

LGBT HISTORY MONTHS                                                As a part of this push for diversity and inclusion, Baruch College annually celebrates October as LGBT History Month. This year, the STARR Career Development Center (SCDC) collaborated with the Gay, Lesbian and Straight Society (G.L.A.S.S) at Baruch to host a panel discussion titled “Queer People of Color in the Workplace”. The panel consisted of experienced professionals including Veronica Carerra, Account Manager – Bloomberg; John Medina, Associate Vice President – Analyst – Moodys; Mel Senecal, Creative Content Producer – McCann New York; Angelina Darrisaw, Senior Manager of Digital Business Development – Viacom and Tiq Milan, Senior Strategist- GLAAD.

COMPANY CULTURE                                                                                                                                             Throughout the event, the panelists spoke extensively on the importance of understanding and affecting an organization’s culture. Veronica Carerra told the students that understanding an organization’s culture will help job seekers determine the best place to work. She recommended that students research companies to become more familiar with their operation and working environment. The research should examine the company’s track record on LGBT issues or any other issue important to the job seeker. “You will spend most of your day at work and if you are working in an environment where you are not comfortable being your true self that can affect your performance”, Veronica Carerra told students.

LEADERSHIP                                                                                                                                                     There was a noticeable level of uncertainty among the students about what to include or exclude on their resumes. A student asked the panelists for recommendations on how he could best represent LGBT leadership positions without pigeonholing himself or turning employers off. Angelina Darrisaw told students that she decided to keep all of her LGBT and minority related leadership positions on her resume because they were demonstrative of her hard work, who she was and where she was heading. She however said that keeping these positions is a decision students will have to make, “you will have to consider if you really want to work in an environment where you would be required to hide something that is important to your identity” she told the students.

The most encouraging part of this event was that the students were attentive for the duration of the panel. There was a gleam of hope and appreciation for the content as it signaled that they can achieve their goals and still be true to themselves. Congratulations to the SCDC, Baruch College and G.L.A.S.S. for planning and executing such an important discussion.

SCDC Correspondent: Meeckel Beecher, Marketing Communications Specialist
Meeckel is a Corporate Communication graduate student at Baruch College. His professional interest is in Reputation Management, Strategic Communication and Visual Communication. Meeckel is an avid reader, writer and lifelong learner. When not working, you will find him walking and happily getting lost on the streets of New York.

 

5 THINGS TO DO BEFORE THE CPA FAIR AND FALL 2014 CAREER DAY

 

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By Meeckel Beecher, Marketing Communications Specialist

The STARR Career Development Center will be hosting two career fairs during the fall semester. The CPA Fair, open to both Baruch College undergraduate and graduate students, will be held on Friday, September 5, 2014 in conjunction with the Graduate Career Management Center. The Fall 2014 Career Day, open only to Baruch College undergraduate students, will be held on September 19, 2014. Both events will be hosted in the NVC Gymnasium from 12:00 – 4:00 p.m.

To maximize your opportunities at the career fairs, here are 5 things you should do before the fairs:

1. Have your resume reviewed by the STARR Career Development Center (SCDC):
Your resume will be the differentiating factor between you and other candidates. You should ensure that your resume uses demonstrative explanations that accurately capture your experiences and abilities. The SCDC will be hosting a Resume Rush Event on Tuesday, September 16th from 12:30 – 4:30 p.m. to help students prepare their resumes for the Fall 2014 Career Day. If you plan to attend the CPA Fair which is scheduled before Resume Rush, or you’re unable to attend Resume Rush, please make an appointment on STARR Search at www.baruch.cuny.edu/careers or visit the SCDC for a 15 minute walk-in review session. Walk-ins are Tuesdays – Thursdays from 3:00 – 5:00 p.m., make sure you arrive by 4:30 p.m. You can also feel free to attend one of the SCDC’s Writing Winning Resumes workshops before the fairs.

2. Attend an SCDC Workshop:
“Tell me about yourself” is one of the most popular questions asked during interviews and networking events. You should have a personal pitch ready to introduce yourself and your background. The personal pitch should explain who you are, what you have done and what you can do. The SCDC has a Personal Pitch workshop that can help you to prepare your pitch. There is also a Networking 101 workshop that will help you with your interpersonal and communication skills. Lastly, you can attend the ‘How to Impress a Recruiter’ workshop on September 18th. This workshop is facilitated by Target representatives and will be held during club hours.

3. Create a Plan:
Let’s be honest, career fairs can be overwhelming. Therefore, to avoid frustration, one of the best approaches is to create a strategy before you attend. One approach is to categorize companies in order of importance (ABC). The companies you really want to work with should be in category A and so on. Target the A companies first, then B and if you have time C. This will help you to maximize time while reaching the companies you really want to work for.

4. Research Companies:
A list of companies attending the fair is available on STARR Search under the ‘Events’ tab. Students should research the companies to determine their best fit and to gain background knowledge. Researching companies will help you to create informed questions to ask recruiters. Asking informed questions is definitely a sure way to make lasting impressions on employers. Be sure to have specific questions for companies and avoid asking questions you can find on the company’s website.

5. Ensure you have Business Attire:
Business attire is required for attending the fairs. For men, it can include business suits, dress shirts and ties. For women, skirt suits or tailored pantsuits are appropriate. Remember, a part of representing your best self is how you look, so dress for the job that you want. For those who do not have business attire, the SCDC can provide a suit (male or female).

SCDC Correspondent: Meeckel Beecher, Marketing Communications Specialist
Meeckel is a Corporate Communication graduate student at Baruch College. His professional interest is in Reputation Management, Strategic Communication and Visual Communication. Meeckel is an avid reader, writer and lifelong learner. When not working, you will find him walking and happily getting lost on the streets of New York.

EIGHT CAREER TIPS FROM THE IPG DIVERSITY AND INCLUSION EVENT

IPG Diversity and Inclusion EventBy Meeckel Beecher, Marketing Communications Specialist

The Interpublic Group (IPG) Speed Networking and Career Panel truly lived up to its intention. The event focused on promoting diversity and inclusion in the workplace and included a panel of experienced professionals that accurately represented a diversity theme. The event created a unique environment for panelists to share their stories and advice, while simultaneously allowing students to discuss their own careers, thoughts and opinions. Throughout the event, there were eight ideas reiterated as ways students could promote their best self. I felt these points were relevant and worth sharing.

Tip 1: Promote your unique selling point (USP) – Your unique selling point (USP) is that feature that makes you different from others. Knowing your USP requires you to analyze your strengths and weaknesses to find what you do best. Think also about transferability and applicability when promoting your USP.

Tip 2: Prepare an Elevator Pitch / Personal Pitch – The elevator pitch is a 30 second to 2 minute infomercial promoting your best self. If you want to be remembered, you have to make your pitch memorable. Practice your pitch until it is the closest version to perfect. Always include your USP. Our Building Your Brand: The Personal Pitch workshop can assist you in creating a personal pitch.

Tip 3: Have a Business Card – A business card is a professional and relatively inexpensive way to provide your contact information. It saves you time and eliminates the awkwardness of sharing information. If you do not have a job title, I suggest you include your name, major, email, telephone and career interests.

Tip 4: Research Company – Knowing about a company is very important to your job search. Researching a company before submitting an application helps you to gauge cultural fit. In addition, researching a company prior to an interview helps you to provide informed answers and questions. You do not want to go into an interview and say something that is completely against a company’s culture and values.

Tip 5: Ask for the Job – This has to be the most unconventional advice I have ever heard, but, if you want it, ask for it and explain why you should get it.

Tip 6: Thank the Interviewers – Always thank an interviewer for taking the time to meet with you. It expresses gratitude.

Tip 7: Dissect Interviews – Sometimes interviews do not go as planned. As a personal development strategy, try to find out what you can improve and make the appropriate changes for the next interview.

Tip 8: Build Relationships – Saying networking is important is cliché but it is one of those necessary clichés. Meeting people is one of the surest ways to get noticed.

SCDC Correspondent: Meeckel Beecher, Marketing Communications Specialist
Meeckel is a Corporate Communication graduate student at Baruch College. His professional interest is in Reputation Management, Strategic Communication and Visual Communication. Meeckel is an avid reader, writer and lifelong learner. When not working, you will find him walking and happily getting lost on the streets of New York.

TAKING THE LEAD: TRANSFERRING LEADERSHIP SKILLS FROM CLASSROOM TO CORPORATION

By Meeckel Beecher, Marketing Communications Specialist

Taking the Lead

Relevant, timely, applicable and pertinent are just some of the adjectives I would use to describe the STARR Career Development Center’s workshop Taking the Lead: Transferring Leadership Skills From Classroom to Corporation. Yes, these words are interchangeable, but because the information from the Target led workshop so accurately mirrored some of the questions I had about leadership, I thought emphasis by means of redundancy was perfectly acceptable.

Managing vs. Leading
The Target representatives, Alex Torres and Naanaba Panfor were engaging and personal. They used their own experiences to relate the importance of leadership in the corporate world. To get the students involved, the presentation started by differentiating between managing and leading. Managing is often about control and relies on rigid hierarchical structures and confirmation of status quo. Leading however is about facilitating employees, promoting equality and understanding, as well as empowering those you lead. A leader is supportive, open-minded and inspiring.

Applying Leadership Skills
The Baruch students attending the event identified themselves as caring, inspiring, ambitious, competent and courageous. These are all attributes Target listed as qualities of great leaders. The challenge for many students was how to identify their leadership skills. Alex and Naanaba suggested that students should start by identifying their strengths and weaknesses. The next step is to hone strengths and work on weaknesses. Alex Torres further mentioned to “lean on your strengths that can cover weaknesses” which is exactly what is needed to improve weaknesses while honing strengths.

Transferring Leadership Skills to the Workplace
Applying your leadership skills will definitely set you apart from others in the workplace. Think about this; if you were asked these questions in an interview how would you respond:

1. Give an example of a time when you played a leadership role in an event or activity?
2. Tell me about a time when you created agreement in a group that differed on the objectives?
These questions are created to measure your leadership skills and gauge how you will operate in a corporate culture. Alex Torres suggested that you create your responses by considering situation, behavior and results. Describe the situation; explain how you addressed the situation (behavior) and explain the results. These guidelines will help you to be more vivid in demonstrating your leadership skills.

To close, here are a few tips from Target that can help you seamlessly transfer leadership skills from classroom to corporation:
1. Carry yourself in the position that you want and show that you are ready for the position.
2. Demonstrate results, this is a great way to show your success and value within a company.
3. Establish a relationship with someone who can help you throughout the first few months on the job. Mentors are great people to bounce ideas off and learn from.
4. Remember that leaders develop commitment from their employees.
5. Effective leaders know themselves.

SCDC Correspondent: Meeckel Beecher, Marketing Communications Specialist
Meeckel is a Corporate Communication graduate student at Baruch College. His professional interest is in Reputation Management, Strategic Communication and Visual Communication. Meeckel is an avid reader, writer and lifelong learner. When not working, you will find him walking and happily getting lost on the streets of New York.

 

MAJOR LEAGUE BASEBALL DIVERSITY BUSINESS SUMMIT: A LESSON IN VALUE EXCHANGE

MLB Business Summit (Smaller size)By Meeckel Beecher, Marketing Ccommunications Specialist

The Major League Baseball (MLB) Diversity Business Summit could not have been held on better dates. Other than the glimpse of hope that spring had sprung, the second day of the Summit, April 15th, marked the 64th anniversary of Jackie Robinson becoming the first African American to play in the Major Leagues. MLB now annually commemorates April 15th as Jackie Robinson Day. This day symbolically represents the diversity and inclusion that MLB now holds at the core of its corporate culture.

Pre-Planning
Prior to attending the Summit, I created a job seeking strategy. The strategy detailed my objective, arrival time, the employers I would engage and in what order. My objective was to find an internship in corporate communication, specifically branding and reputation management. My research showed that MLB Network, the Commissioner’s Office, MLB Media and the Yankees were the best fit for my objective. These organizations became my target for the event. I had a strategy because I knew that career fairs were often crowded and pre-planning would help me maximize time, while reaching my target. I strongly suggest this approach to all job seekers attending career fairs.

With all the pre-planning I did, Murphy’s Law- if anything can go wrong, it will- affected my first day. I got lost on my way to the event. This is not the first time, in fact, when I first moved to New York, I got lost every day… everywhere. To mitigate this, my phone became my best friend and I would also visit interview locations prior to the interview. Somehow- probably because of my jaywalking abilities- I mistakenly thought I was a resident New Yorker and opted to not check and recheck the route. I arrived an hour late which affected my strategy. When I eventually got to the event, I was flustered and had to rethink my approach. Never let this happen to you; know the location of your interview/event prior to attending or travel at least 30-45 minutes ahead of schedule.

What is your Career Goal?
The most recurring question during the Summit was “what are your career goals?” At first, I doubted the relevance of the question, but I quickly realized that my career goals say a lot about who I am and my fit with a company. Career goals describe your intentions, qualifications, and skills as well as how you will transfer your skills and to what field. This information reveals your work ethic, likely contributions and value. Luckily, I knew my career goals and it was easy to demonstrate this to the recruiters. You should consider your career goals before interviewing or networking. Know what you want and state it succinctly and clearly. It demonstrates clarity, order, confidence and control.

Value Exchange
At the end of the event Frank Sanchez, President of the Boys and Girls Club of America said, “Business partnerships are about value exchange, the value you will gain for your value.” These words transcend traditional business partnerships and are applicable to individual careers. I felt that these words were important because job seekers often forget their value when searching for opportunities. All career relationships should be symbiotic. Know your worth, demonstrate your worth and never undersell yourself.

Overall, the MLB Diversity Business Summit was an excellent event that supported networking and confidence building. The Summit provided me with access to people I would not normally have been exposed to and I am grateful for that opportunity. Thank You SCDC.

SCDC Correspondent: Meeckel Beecher, Marketing Communications Specialist
Meeckel is a Corporate Communication graduate student at Baruch College. His professional interest is in Reputation Management, Strategic Communication and Visual Communication. Meeckel is an avid reader, writer and lifelong learner. When not working, you will find him walking and happily getting lost on the streets of New York.