Why Attend A Career Fair?

Two words; free pens. I can’t say I knew what to expect for my first career fair experience but it turned out there are no clowns and there are instead oodles of free pens.

I’ve been to a few fairs in my younger days, but this was my first formal attendance of the Career Fair on the Fox. Unlike my childhood memories of cotton candy and merry-go-round rides, this kind of fair involved much more mature opportunities like booths with company names on them (some still have candy), company chap-stick, and brochures. However as crazy as it sounds, I realize that a job opportunity has higher value and may last longer than a bit of sticky sweet pink fluff that dissolves in your mouth.

I wasn’t fully prepared for the enormity of the event with over 140 companies lined up in booths and waiting for me to approach them and strike up my best elevator pitch with the flourish of my well-rounded resume. In fact, I wandered through the aisles a couple times just taking in all the companies’ names and representatives smiling at me with their “ask me anything,” attitudes.

The first few booths made polite chit-chat but they just didn’t seem to have a position that I found desirable considering my Journalism Major. Reaching the homestretch of the final row of booths in the field house, I was drawn to the 4imprint company which posted openings for a graphic design position. I’m not a full fledged designing genius but I know how to work some of the newer graphic programs so I shyly smiled at Lia Cummings and we struck up a conversation about 4imprint and the potential career opportunities I may want to consider. I left with her business card, but the true gift had been the amount of information I had compiled today.

I also had a professional picture taken for free, which I can use for business cards and networking. The fair offered resume reviews and great interviewing experience. My reaction to this wonderful opportunity is that it really helped me practice and get comfortable with connecting to potential employers as well as learn about how to market myself and create positive and lasting  impressions.

Top Tips to Prepare for a Career Fair

Feeling hesitant about attending the Career Fair because you don’t know what to expect or how to present yourself? No problem! The Career Services Staff has you covered. Here are some tips straight from the office on how to prep, present yourself with confidence, and make the most of your Career Fair experience.

Go outside your comfort zone. Don’t be afraid to talk to companies and explore opportunities that you may not have been considering.

-Aleah Van-Gheem, Career Resource Specialist

Research and Identify Employers you may want to connect with prior to the Fair to avoid getting overwhelmed at the event.

-Rich Marshall, College of Letters and Science and CNL Career Advisor

Make sure to wear professional dress and bring several (5-10) copies of your resume.                                                                                                      

-Justin Lyons, Career Resource Specialist

Bring a business card. You can order them online or if you’re short on time make your own by going to a local supplies store such as Office Max or Staples and they can print them up on cardstock.

-Sarah Kriha, Career Event & On-Campus Interview Coordinator

Prepare and practice your pitch, a 30 second “elevator speech” which is a brief introduction you can give to employers which includes your name, major, academic year, and job positions you’re interested in.

-Chelsey Cegielski, Career Service Staff

Career Fairs are filled with opportunity and information, so don’t be afraid to polish your presentation, put yourself out there and make connections.

Take a look at last spring’s Career Fair on the Fox!

 

 

 

Career Services: Together We Make It Better

Look to impress for less!

By Emily Colon

If someone gave you $35 to spend on professional attire, do you think that would be possible? I am assuming most of you said no. Don’t worry, I was with you too. That is until I actually went out and accomplished this.

Career Services gave me $35 to find a professional outfit to wear to events. The best and probably only way to accomplish this is at a thrift store. Career adviser Cassie Curry and I went to take on this mission. What I found was unbelievable. I really found this hard to believe, but it turned out to be a total success. One of the most shocking things was that I was able to find more than just one outfit. I was able to find a professional suit, a very fun hot pink blazer, a few skirts, shirts and even shoes.

It was a fun outing and not only did we accomplish our goal I learned a few things as well. First I learned that Cassie has great taste and knew just where to find everything. I am 100 percent positive that I would not have succeeded without her. Some of the things I learned were what you can and cannot wear to certain events and outings in the professional field; I also learned that it is unprofessional to wear open-toed shoes to a professional outing such as an interview. Lastly, I learned that even though this is common sense, you should wear neutral colors to a professional gathering or interview and my pink blazer would definitely be inappropriate.

If you have any questions on what you should or should not wear to an interview or professional outing, make sure you pay a visit to Career Services to get some great advice!

 

How to make study abroad dreams a reality

By Emily Colon

I think it’s safe to assume that many college students dream of studying abroad. Well, what if I told you that dream could become a reality? Every single time you talk to people who have studied abroad, they all tell you that it was the best time and experience of their lives. I don’t know about you, but I know that every time I hear someone talk about their experience, it makes me want to travel right then and there!

Unfortunately, I have not studied abroad because I am just a freshman, but I dream of studying abroad at least once if not more during my undergraduate education. What I want to tell you about is how to make studying abroad possible.

First off, the place to start is the Office of International Affairs located in Dempsey Hall. They can get you on your way. If your problem is not knowing where to go, that should not be a problem because you can pretty much go anywhere in the world. Many people’s first thought is that they can’t afford it, so they miss out on a chance of a lifetime experience. What most people don’t know is that there are tons of scholarships available. You can even use your financial aid to pay for study abroad expenses.

Okay then, once you have a location in mind and have found a way to pay for it, you have the basics down, but still have so much more to cover. Other things you might want to cover are what you plan to do in this foreign country and how long you will stay. Many more things need to be planned before you embark on your trip, but these tips will get you started.

A great place and resource that can help and answer a lot of your questions is available to you right now on your computer! All UW Oshkosh students have access toThe Big Guide to Living and Working Overseas, an online database that has a ton of resources that deal with studying, volunteering and working abroad. It has tips on what you need to do to prepare for a trip and so much more. I have been exploring the page and have found it really useful. The next time you are thinking of studying abroad or are just curious, make sure you visit The Big Guide online.

Federal Internships



By Emily Colon 

The webinar “Go Government: Landing your Dream Internship” took place on Feb. 8, 2012. The facilitator was career adviser Cassie Curry from Career Services. There were a decent number of attendees for an auditory webinar.

The two panel members, Chris Hogan and Jessica Wahl, were featured. Chris works for Homeland Security and Jessica works for the Department of the Interior. They talked about a variety of topics including how there are many different opportunities within federal jobs. Websites where you can go to find federal internships are USA.gov, makingthedifference.org and usajobs.gov.

There are also many third party internship providers such as agency websites, career development centers, career fairs, social media and personal networks.

Some facts about federal jobs are that they offer excellent pay and benefits, high levels of responsibility, valuable work experience, flexible schedules, training and professional development and great travel opportunities.

The panelists talked about the different bureaus and how there are internships for every major. Jessica said that the breadth of experience you get is great. Chris added that you get unique opportunities.

Some advice the panelists gave was to tailor your resume by using the job announcement, expand your experiences and make a master resume. Something interesting they mentioned was that federal agencies prefer if you wait until they contact you with a job opportunity rather than you contact them because they get many applications.

If you are interested in a federal internship, check out Titan Jobs, an online database with job postings and much more. And if you need help with tailoring your resume, make sure to make an appointment here at with a resource specialist at Career Services Ph: (920)424-2181

My mentor, my big sister

 

By Emily Colon

Four years ago I met one of my biggest role models, Adria Maddaleni, a UWO alumna. It was the evening of my fifteenth birthday. She was probably the best birthday present I have ever received. I met Adria through a pre-college program called Sponsor-A-Scholar that is run through the YMCA of Metropolitan Milwaukee. Although it is called a pre-college program, it actually continues throughout your college career.

As a part of this program, I got assigned a mentor based on my personality and interests. I could not have asked for a better mentor. One of the reasons Adria and I got matched was because she is an attorney and that is one of the things I inspire to be in the future. She is currently an attorney for Milwaukee Public Schools.

During my high school career, Adria was there for me from day one. She has taught me so much and everything I have learned has been valuable. She has taken me to many places that I would have never gotten the opportunity to visit if it wasn’t for her. Throughout the years we have gone to movies, restaurants, museums, exhibits, college visits and so much more. Through those outings Adria helped me become the young woman I am today.

She always was there for me and gave me advice and support. During my senior year in high school Adria gave me lots of guidance in where I wanted to go with my future. We spent countless hours at her house just working on my college applications and all those essays. She has been there for me both academically and personally.

Having a mentor has been truly beneficial. Adria is mainly one of the reasons that I am a student at UWO today. When I was still in high school, she brought me up to visit the UWO campus and I fell completely in love with all it had to offer. Even though she would have supported me with any decision, I know that she is happy that I chose her alma mater for my undergraduate education. I love it here just as I know she loved it here.

Adria is more than just a mentor to me; she is the big sister I never had and I know I will be able to count on her for the rest of my life.

UWO Human Resource graduates give advice via webinar

By Emily Colon

When you hear HR Webinar what probably comes to your mind is an exclusive event for human resources majors. Well let me start by telling you that you are completely wrong. This webinar was useful to any major or person. This webinar was basically structured as question and answer. I was the only live audience member so that was a pretty cool experience. I got to meet the two gentlemen after the webinar and they were both very nice.

The two employers who participated in the webinar were Andrew Ingebrigtson and Carlos Rodriguez. They were asked questions from many different aspects of the work field. The first question they were asked was what challenges they face when trying to hire applicants. Carlos said a problem he faces is that applicants limit themselves. Andrew stated that what he struggles with is qualifications, especially in his field where there is a skills shortage in engineering.

Andrew Ingebrigtson

Carlos Rodriguez 

Next they gave advice on cross-transitioning. Carlos said moving from one job to another can help you develop skills not already in your expertise. A word of advice from Carlos was to stay positive with your previous employer. Andrew agreed with Carlos and added that you should be willing to volunteer for experience or go back to school for the skills you need. He also said that you should show your skills, especially things that might not be conveyed in your resume. When going from industry to industry, Carlos said to show your new employer that you have the skills necessary for that new position, and to sell yourself not your title. He also mentioned that a great thing to have is references.

The next topic was interviewing. Here are some tips that Carlos and Andrew gave:

  • Maintain good eye contact
  • Have a good pitch
  • Show your self-confidence
  • Be prepared and comfortable speaking about yourself
  • Sell yourself

They also talked about appropriate attire for an interview. A great piece of advice Andrew gave was to research the company and dress to what is expected for that position. Some people wonder what to bring to an interview. Carlos said that a resume and questions tend to be enough. A portfolio or project you have done that shows your skills for that position is more appropriate in a second interview. Andrew said it never hurts to ask what they would like you to bring beforehand.

 

Students helping students

By Emily Colon 

Have you ever needed help with your resume or had a question but were too scared or intimidated to ask for help? What if I could tell you that you can get help from a student just like you? I am not saying that if you need help you shouldn’t ask for it because that is one thing you should do, ask for help, and the perfect place to ask for help is at Career Services.

Let’s say that you have your resume and need it to be done in a few hours and don’t have time to sit down with an advisor but you would like a second opinion. Well all you need to do is go down to Career Services and ask a Career Resource Specialist to read it over for you and they will gladly do it. You are probably wondering what a Career Resource Specialist is.

A CRS is a number of people who are students just like you who you would see at the front desk of Career Services. You’d imagine that is all they do, but they do endless tasks, and I learned a lot of what they do in the week that I spent with them. It is amazing how much I learned about Career Services, what a CRS does, and about the Career Resource Specialists themselves in just one week.

CRS’s do so many things to help students. They work the front desk as I mentioned before, answer any questions a student may have, answer phone calls, schedule appointments, help with mail, do tasks assigned by advisors, keep track of who is in or out of the office, help direct students where they need to go, help students with quick resume questions or any other quick career questions they may have, make copies, help make and follow the calendar and check-in appointments.

So those are only a few of the many jobs that Career Resource Specialists do. If you ever need help with a resume or have a question about a job or career or even grad school, do not hesitate to come down to Career Services and get them answered.

Meet our past CRS’s

Pam Johnson graduated in May with a bachelor’s degree in Liberal Studies. An interesting fact about her is that she is from the suburbs of Chicago.

Bree Francour is an elementary education major in grades one through eight. She has a minor in Spanish. She is also a junior at UWO. She was the new Spring 2012 CRS lead and all of us at Career Services are very proud of her. A unique fact about Bree is that she studied abroad in Spain for a month on an interim trip.

Ashley Nealon is a finance major with a Spanish minor. She will be a senior at UWO and loves cheese.

Aleah VanGheem is a Music Education major. She will also be a junior at UWO. An awesome talent she has is that she can play five instruments. However, she wants to be a choir teacher in the future.

 

Charles Block will also be a senior at UWO with a major in supply chain management. An interesting fact about him is that he has four children.

Cassie James is an education major. An interesting fact about her is that she is from Milwaukee, Wisconsin.

Justin Lyons is a double major in Spanish and German with a history minor. He will be a junior at UWO and enjoys laughing at internet websites.

Which college majors will pay off in Northeast Wisconsin?

HIGHER EDUCATION – Prepping for a profession


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