This past Tuesday was the culmination of a six-week career services seminar I took through the College of Communication’s Career Service Center. As a freshman I was hoping to learn more about the dos and don’ts of finding an internship and how to write my resume. However I learned a whole lot more than I expected. With the guidance of Joyce Rogers, director of COM Career Services, and Kelly Forde, Career Services Coordinator, I learned about so many great tips and tools to use now and in the future.
Here are the top pieces of advice that I have gained from the seminar:
Update your resume and check up on your career field
It is important once you have generated a resume to keep it up-to-date and review it every six months or so. You never know when you might want to apply for an internship or a job and oftentimes deadlines are short, so having an updated resume is key to staying prepared. It is also essential to stay on top of your career and field of interest. It never hurts to stay informed and know what’s new and up-and-coming in your career.
Take advantage of the services provided through Career Services
Before taking this seminar I had no knowledge of all of the online services offered for students at BU. Each student has a Career Link account that is accessible through career services, which allows students to create a profile and search for job opportunities in the area. Another great site is Career Insider, which provides great insight into industries and companies. Additionally Linked-In is a fantastic site to connect with classmates and potential colleagues on a professional level on-line. I have signed up for all of these services and have found each of them to be helpful in their own way.
Seek guidance with writing your resume and cover letter
It can often be daunting when thinking about writing your resume and cover letter, but have no fear because COM Career Services offers many helpful aids on its website. Under Resume Services, walk-in hours are posted and sample resume and cover letters are available for guidelines. Take advantage of them, I know I did.
Work on your interview skills
Similar to keeping your resume up-to-date, it never hurts to brush up on your interview skills. An interview can often make or break an internship or job opportunity so it is essential to be confident in your abilities. A few take-away tips on interviewing that I learned from the seminar are to be enthusiastic, engaging and prepared (with resume copies and pen and paper) and to always ask questions. There are also many helpful online tools that can aid you in preparing for an interview such as Interview Stream and Wise Bread.
Make a plan and set goals
One of the most vital things I have learned from this seminar is that it is never too early to start planning. Even if it’s setting deadlines for when you will have your resume and cover letter complete, it is important to make a plan. Setting goals and writing them out is also another central piece to the puzzle. Thinking of long-term and short-term goals will help you to stay organized and have a clear path into job-dom.