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Movers and Shakers: Kat Pecora, UWO journalism student, reveals secrets for a successful college career

Kat Pecora is a journalism major with an emphasis in advertising. She loves all things social media and is a total art fanatic. If she’s not doing homework, she’s probably whipping up some sort of craft project. She’s originally from Monroe, Wis., known for their Cheese Days festival.

“It’s pretty cheesey,” Pecora said.

When it comes to excelling in college, Pecora, a UWO senior, has got the how to’s.

Learn more about her internship experiences: http://youtu.be/yOOpn4v9l9Y

Five secrets for a successful college career by Kat Pecora:

When I was a freshman, my head was swirling with millions of questions. The last thing on my mind was planning for my future career.  I still have 3 years left to think about that, right?

In my time at UW Oshkosh, I have been a CA, been involved on campus, have become enamored with social media and I have had two internships. Little did I know when I was a freshman that all these things would benefit my career goals.

I am now going into my senior year and will soon be starting my search for jobs. I’m very nervous, but I know that with the connections I have made and the resume I have developed that I will be a strong candidate. Here are my 5 tips for how to rock your time in college and be ready for a job at the end of it.

1) Keep up your GPA
As a freshman, do whatever you can to maintain a great GPA your first year. It’s easier to start off you time in college with a high GPA than try to build it back up at the end.  If you are struggling with a course, don’t be afraid to seek help from your professor or a tutor. They are here to help!

For your resume: Employers pay close attention to this little number and with the job market as competitive as it is, a good GPA is crucial. In some situations, your GPA can determine if you are chosen for a job interview or not. Now that number isn’t everything, but a good GPA with a resume full of campus involvement will really make you stand out.

2) Use Your Resources
What makes college so amazing is all the resources available to you. Your professors are an incredible resource! If you are interested in a particular subject or just want to learn more, any professor would be happy to talk to you. Some other great resources available to you are your CA and your academic adviser. These experts can help you reach your goals and make your time at UW Oshkosh great.

For your resume: When you use campus resources, such as your academic adviser, you can stay on track to graduate and can get help finding ways to stay involved on campus. Utilizing your resources can help you get the grades you want, which means a great GPA.

3) Get Involved
There are so many great student organizations on campus to choose from! Not only will you meet others who have similar interests, you will also develop leadership skills. Student organizations are also a great way to do what you love. Whether you enjoy sports or philosophy, there is an organization for you.

For your resume: Employers want to see a well-rounded candidate and campus involvement is a great way to do what you love while building your resume! It also shows employers that you are a leader in your community and that you have initiative.

4) Network
Build connections with everyone you meet. Your CAs, academic advisers, and even your professors.
In college you are also going to meet some people who you don’t get along with. A great motto to have in your journey through college is to be courteous to everyone you meet. Sure, you may not see eye-to-eye with that professor, but blowing up at that person isn’t going to help anything. One day when you are looking for a job, that person may know someone who is the hiring manager for the job you applied for. Pick your battles because you never know!

For your resume: Finding a job is often about who you know. The stronger your network, the better chance you are to find a job. After you make connections, be sure to keep in touch. Create a profile on the professional networking site, LinkedIn. This site is home to millions of professionals in the world and it’s a great way to meet others and stay connected with members of your network.

5) Do What You Love
Whether it’s volleyball or graphic design, do what you love and find ways to excel and show your talent. Blog about your experiences or strategies as a volleyball player or create an online portfolio for your art as a graphic design student. College is about academics, but at the same time you are learning more about yourself and finding who you are.

For your resume: In the end, it’s not about the resume, but really about who you are as a person. Employers want to see the real you. They want to see a real person who has hobbies and who is passionate about something, not a robot. Showing your skills and abilities communicates to an employer that you have hard work and dedication, which are great qualities for any candidate.

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