ARTICLES, BLOGS & VIDEOS

The latest news, trends and information to help you with your recruiting efforts.

Posted December 13, 2007 by

More exciting than a resume…

I have a secret about job seeking. I love to write cover letters. I hate the formality of resumes and the need to write a certain way or in a certain format, but cover letters offer a more personable approach to the job search. I will admit that my first attempts at cover letter writing were not pretty. My language was awkward and words were jumbled on the page, although to be fair, I wrote my first cover letter before I wrote my first resume. My love of cover letters is a more recent thing. Cover letters can seem irksome after searching for the perfect action verbs to describe filing papers and answering phones, but for those with a love for language, they can also be an excuse to write a mini essay about why you would be perfect for any job.
As with any good essay, a good cover letter begins with research. Researching into a company is a good idea for every step of the job search because although you want the company to want you, you should also consider if the company would be a good fit for you. For cover letter research, I would recommend searching for something that the company has accomplished, or a group that they have worked with or for that speaks to you in some way. For example, through some research I found out that a literary agency I was seeking employment from worked with an organization that worked to empower women. Since I had volunteered with Planned Parenthood and worked as a residential advisor in college, I wrote about how I admired the agency’s work with this organization. While I later decided that the job was not the right fit for me, my interviewer commended my thoughtful and attentive cover letter.
Writing a cover letter reminds me of my semester end suck-up to my professors. At the end of the semester, while handing in my final paper or exam, I would always take the time to remind my professors of all that I learned in their class and how I can continue with that knowledge and also thank them for such a great experience. My professors were left with a positive reminder of my capabilities and that I was thinking critically of the work we had done together. All this extra thinking will take as much time as you want to devote to it but the result of a winning cover letter will be worth the extra effort. Good luck!
Posted August 28, 2007 by

A little about me…

1. What profession would you like to try?
In a way I would like to try all kinds of professions from professor to aquarium worker to psychologist to actor. I suppose it is because I am still in a transition sort of phase but also because I think that more experience in different arenas would give my writing more depth.
2. What was your best interview experience like?
While I have had some good professional interviews, I think my best one was an interview for a residential liaison position that I had my senior year of college. I was settled on my choices and the interview was relaxed and we were able to joke around. And I got the job.
3. Where do you hope to be in five years?
Ack. I want to do so much in the next five years. I want to have traveled to some faraway place and had an adventure. If I have decided on grad school, then at that point I would like to be done and have a collection of short stories published. I don’t know if I want to be married at that point but I want to have a realistic partner with the idea of marriage in mind. I want to own a house. All in all, I want to be more at peace with my choices and be more settled.
4. What would a movie about your life be called and who would play you?
A movie about my life thus far would be called Muddy Water… lol
I would love for someone like Drew Barrymore to play me because she is energetic and playful but has a more serious side.

Posted January 31, 2007 by

Entry-level writing jobs and your future

While your parents may not be taking the news for your journalistic aspirations as well as they would if your dreams involved med school, the future is looking up for writers. According to the U.S. Department of Labor, the Bureau of Labor Statistics concludes that there is a growing demand for writers that will reach around triple the current average around the year 2014.
It may seem a bit odd that in a world that is becoming more and more technical that the demand for writers would increase but upon reflection it is hard to not notice that someone needs to create all the published work available on the Internet. Writers and editors are needed for all kinds of jobs like advertising copy to periodicals. A simple entry-level writing job search shows that writers are already coming into a demand. For example, the new news information medium is bloging. Blogging gives a voice to anyone with an opinion but advertisers are also using this form to sell products. So there are lots of places to get your name out there in the writing world through an entry-level job opportunity and there is also an ability to get paid!

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Posted January 31, 2007 by

Will your major help or hinder you in your entry-level job search?

It may seem that all of your friends whom stuck with Business, Accounting, or Marketing degrees in school had the right idea as far as pursuing a lucrative job post-graduation. After all, in doing a basic search on most job websites- most entry level jobs are associated with business and marketing.
But there are jobs out there for the English and Philosophy majors, you may just have to search a little harder for them and may require some clever thinking in how you can transfer how you learned (perhaps being analytical and creative) can transfer to even the stuffiest job. Creativity, for example, is often called for in entry-level jobs, employers often describe looking for people whom can “think out of the box.” That would be a clue to us, creative types, that the employer wanted someone whom was creative. Employers want people whom can problem solve and come up with solutions that may save time or money. Analytical or logical thinkers are also very useful in the business world because we have sharpened our ability to think out the tiny details and see the big picture. This will save time and allow us to find mistakes or flaws in a system before they cost the company money.

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Posted January 30, 2007 by

Entry Levels jobs and your dreams

When searching for jobs after college, it seems logical to start off in an entry- level job in almost any field. After being in school for so long where you have acquired the educational bones needed to succeed in life you may feel that you are complete and ready to work but, you will most likely lack the work experience that will flesh out what you have learned. Hopefully when you graduate you have some idea of the type of dream job that you will want to work one day.
It is very rare to graduate and right away get your dream job. And as far as I know, it is very unlikely to graduate and know exactly what you want to do for the rest of your life. Some people will choose to head directly into the work force and grab an entry-level job that they see. It will give them needed experience and certainly help to pay back loans or rent. However, you can have an entry-level job and still be heading towards a career that you would like to have.

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Posted January 30, 2007 by

Online scams and writing jobs for entry level applicants

If you use a search engine to do look for entry level writing jobs, you will ultimately be flooded with results that promise little work, flexible hours, and high pay all at the your home. These job offers may seem to be like hitting the jackpot. Imagine being able to do all your work in pajamas while still having time to hang out with your friends and sleep late. It should sound somewhat like a fantasy because it most likely will be one. Some of these so-called job offers for entry-level writers are scams. They require you to pay a subscription fee for using their database of real job offers.
It is often very hard to determine if these writing jobs are fraudulent. I would suggest doing a search on Google or yahoo to see if anyone has posted on other websites about scams. Some things to consider if you want to try to work with a website for job offers- some will have a trial period that you should take advantage of before shelling out a lot of money for the subscription. Also, think about how much money they are asking for and what they tell you that you will get for it. It is pretty unrealistic for them to promise you automatic jobs just for signing up, but they should be able to provide lots of job postings that are current and updated frequently. The website www.writing-world.com has a lot of resources that highlight what to look for in a possible scam and it also had some reference websites to spot scams that have been reported. Internet offers may be a risk that you would have to consider if it was right for you to pursue this way of a writing job or maybe to search for different entry level writing jobs.

Posted January 30, 2007 by

What to consider with costs of an entry-level salary

Entry-level jobs will rarely pay the amount of money that graduates need today to pay off student loans, pay for rent, transportation, etc. The entry level salaries continue to decline with the demand for the job, you would make more money working as an entry-level employee at an accounting firm than you will if you start at entry-level at a newspaper. This is simply because there are less jobs out there for writers than there are for accountants, jobs for writers are highly coveted. It is important to not solely fixate on a number when thinking about entry-level salaries, but to think about what that number means to you.
After graduation, a friend of mine faced a dilemma between two jobs offers doing lab work. One job was offering her $30,000 for the year and the other job, $28,000. As a recent college graduate there is definitely an inkling to just go for the job that offers the most money. However there are pros and cons to every offer. The job that offered more money was 30 minutes away (or more if there was traffic) and it was on a major highway that was notoriously heavy with traffic at almost all parts in the day. The other job was 5 minutes from her house. She could have taken the higher salary but spent time and money on traffic and gas respectively. Instead after reflection she realized that since she was living at home and saving all of her earnings, it would be easier and way less stressful to be closer to work. You just have to determine what amount will work for you in your own situation.

Posted October 29, 2006 by

A golden opportunity

Whew… so much has happened since my last post. My cousin called me up this week to tell me she found some work for me. Her friend is a recruiter at a temp agency and over cocktails she told Liz that she had so many open spots to fill and not enough resumes. My cousin mentioned my unemployment and a day later I was emailing my resume in.
I had worked on my resume a bunch of times since it’s final approval at my college’s career center in an effort to appeal to different types of jobs. I felt that it was good. The recruiter called me bright and early the next morning to suggest that I completely change the format and then mail it back in.
After I changed the format, she replied right away with an interview for hire. I made my interview at the end of the week so I would have time to prepare.

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Posted October 20, 2006 by

Help me embrace all the Shoulds

Most people I talk to in my position (read: clueless/unsure/depressed/confused) are keeping busy with jobs at local delis or chain stores. I know I really need to get some money coming in but I just can’t bring myself to work at a bookstore or food place- I mean I went to college. I got a very expensive degree. Shouldn’t I be doing something more? I might be just feeling a bit stuck up but I feel like my job searching should be focused on a job that pays you for a year and where you have to be more responsible and grown-up. I keep making excuses to not buckle down and actually apply places and then the days slip away and it is suddenly the latter half of October and I have nothing to show for that expensive degree.

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Posted October 18, 2006 by

dreams

When I was a freshman in high school, we read the poem “Dream Deferred” by Langston Hughes. The poem was obviously questioning what happened to dreams put on layaway. This poem has always stuck with me and now as I sit in the position where the world is open to me (aka unemployed), I often think about my dream careers. We all have dream careers and jobs that we would pursue if we had no money or societal pressure, no responsibilities, and most importunately no fear.

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