Archive for the Dress to Impress Category

Savvy Seniors: Want to Join the Team?

Posted on March 5, 2014 with No Comments

Blue Cross Blue Shield Staff on stairs preparing for race

How to Interview like a Pro: Tips from a Local Recruiter

For most people, an interview creates a lot of stress and anxiety—it is an intimidating way to make a great first impression. For most employers though, the goal of inviting an applicant in for an interview is to get to know them. It’s a meeting based around discovery. We want to know who you are and if you could successfully fit in with the culture of our organization, the position, and the department. We also want you to ask questions that can help you make a decision about whether our company is the right place for you.

Quick tips for standing out & having a successful interview:

  • Dress for the job you’re applying for. It’s okay to ask what the dress code is when you’re scheduling the interview.
  • Make eye contact, smile, and shake the interviewer’s hand.
  • Bring a few copies of your resume with you to the interview.
  • If you have a samples of something that relates to the position you’re applying for, have it on hand (i.e. for a graphic design position, bring some of your design work).
  • Don’t over-think things. Trying to perfect every sentence comes off as robotic.
  • Be natural and be yourself; it is okay to smile and laugh! We can sense when an applicant is putting on a façade.
  • Work experience and qualifications are important, but they’re not everything. We’re trying to find someone who “fits” in with the department and the company as a whole. Try to find something in common with the interviewer and make an emotional connection.
  • As the interview wraps up, ask what the next steps are. In most instances, recruiters are happy to let you know where they are in the hiring process and when you should expect to hear back.

~Myra Fundis, UVM ‘11
Human Resources Wellness Specialist with Blue Cross Blue Shield of Vermont

Want to learn more? Join us and special guest National Life for:
Savvy Seniors: Interview Like a Pro: Tuesday, March 18, 12-1pm at the Hub

Savvy Seniors: Find Hidden Jobs (One Senior’s True Story)

Posted on January 8, 2014 with No Comments

Michelle LeungSpring semester of my senior year – stressed out and exhausted, I was bogged down with papers, exams, projects, presentations, work and extracurricular commitments. On top of that, I hadn’t yet secured a job for after graduation. Everything was still up in the air and the next several months were filled with uncertainty.

In April, UVM Career Center and the Tower Society collaborated to host a panel and networking event featuring female business leaders. They were asked to share their wisdom and stories on their career path and professional growth. The advice they gave was invaluable and I found myself taking notes.

After the panel, I approached one of the presenters, a Senior Vice President with Human Resources at State Street. I thanked her for her time and shared my desire to work in Human Resources. Meeting her led me to several interviews and two weeks after graduation, I got the call and was offered a job at State Street Corporation!

Now, as a contract Recruiting Coordinator, my days consist of scheduling interviews, sending out offer letters, posting internal and external job openings, facilitating background investigation, and conducting new hire paperwork appointments.

Who knew attending the Women in Leadership Panel would land me a job at State Street? I certainly did not.

To all seniors who are currently in their job search process – keep your head up and don’t get discouraged! Attend networking events and career fairs when you get the chance, connect with those who work in companies you are interested in, make the extra effort to get to know and understand their business – who knows? You might be talking to your future employer. It happened to me.

~Michelle Leung, Class of 2013
Recruiting Coordinator at State Street Bank

Want to learn more? Join us with special guest The Intervale Center for the next Savvy Seniors Workshop: Finding Hidden Jobs Tuesday, January 21, 12-1pm at the Hub!

Begin Networking with Two Easy Steps

Posted on December 5, 2013 with No Comments

Network of diverse peoples

Love it or hate it: Networking is an integral part of any job search, but it doesn’t have to be daunting.

You have likely heard some of the reasons why you should network. The relationships you build connect you to information, organizations, and people- all that may help you direct your next steps. Plus, networking is often the key to unlocking the hidden job market – those jobs and internships that are never publicly posted.

Even amongst all the reasons to network, it can be difficult to get started. Here are two easy steps you can take this winter break:

  • Hold an informational interview. These are short 20-30 minute interviews that you set up to learn from other professionals about their career path, industry, or company. There is not necessarily a job or internship available rather these interviews provide starting points for building professional relationships.

    Try to start with someone you know – a family friend, older sibling of a friend, or reach out to UVM alumnus in your area. Bring questions and an eagerness to learn.

  • Attend a networking event. These events are set up specifically for building networks amongst professionals. Here you can have numerous conversations in one evening and develop those relationships outside of the event.

    This winter break, UVM is hosting networking events in Boston (Jan. 6) and New York (Jan. 8). These events are designed to connect students and UVM alumni in those regions.

Read more about setting up informational interviews and preparing for networking events.

~Lisa

Savvy Seniors: Interviewing

Posted on April 4, 2013 with No Comments

Sailboats on Lake Champlain

Jen Guimaraes
Associate Director
Community Sailing Center

When a student lands an interview, what should they do to prepare?
Students should make sure to do their “homework” on the organization that they are interviewing with. Take the time to familiarize yourself with the entire organization by researching their website and any other information that you can gather about them. Create a list of questions you have about the organization and the position you are applying for. Employers always ask for your questions at the end of the interview process and having a list shows that you did background research and are very interested in the position. Make sure to dress appropriately, show up on time, and be professional in your communication (word choice and email style) with the prospective employer.

You must interview a lot of applicants for the Community Sailing Center, what makes a candidate stand out?
A candidate stands out if they are energetic, upbeat, and already familiar with the organization. Make eye contact with the employer(s) you are interviewing with and give complete answers to their questions, not just one-word responses. You can almost certainly anticipate what questions an employer might ask you based on the position you are applying for, rehearsing your answers ahead of time is always a good idea. Don’t forget to smile!

What questions should candidates be asking you?

I’ve had candidates ask a number of questions: Do I enjoy my job? What is a typical day like for this position? What is the chain of command with direct and indirect supervisors? Are there any additional duties that I will have not included in the job description?

Learn more about opportunities, classes, rentals and more at the Community Sailing Center!

Don’t miss this workshop to learn more! Savvy Seniors: Interviewing Wed., April 10th 4:15pm, L&L E166

Networking Nights: A Student Perspective

Posted on March 28, 2013 with No Comments

“Our success has really been based on partnerships from the very beginning.”
-Bill Gates

Networking seated event with speaker

Networkers posing for picture

As a senior at UVM, I had finally approached the time where I had to start researching and applying for jobs. I had held various internships and other working positions, but now I had to start seriously thinking about entering the real world.  For the past 3 years, I received various emails and flyers about UVM’s Boston and New York Networking Events which were held over Winter Break. I had secretly avoided them in the past due to anxiety, and stress of networking with complete strangers. To prepare for this event, last semester I attended a workshop on networking, and gained more confidence in this skill. Once the event date arrived, I drove into Boston to start networking.

UVM alum, and CEO of British Beer Company, Mike Fallman, was the keynote speaker. He provided students and alumni with his version of “the most important interview tips,” where he stressed the significance of networking.  Both events paralleled the idea of speed dating. Students rotated between tables and conversed on various topics with alums. With a set amount of time and alternating among tables, networking was far less stressful than anticipated. Discussions were relaxed yet helpful, and alum talked about their career path, networking, and provided us with interviewing and job searching tips.

After the speed networking portion, we were able to individually meet alums who work in industries of our personal interest. The small room was completely packed with alumni and students networking, and exchanging contact information. Overall, the Boston Networking Event was a huge success. It was great to meet the keynote speaker, and hear from other UVM alums about their experience. This year more than 280 UVM alumni and current students gathered in Boston and New York to network, with more to come in Vermont and Washington D.C. I would highly recommend attending one of these Networking Events. I’ve certainly learned that it’s never too late to start networking.

~Tashia, Career Peer Advisor

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