Workshop teaches students bragging might be beneficial
Career Services helps seniors’ job search strategy
Published: Wednesday, October 17, 2012
Updated: Wednesday, October 17, 2012 19:10
Graduation is coming up for seniors and trying to launch a career may be challenging.
That is why Career Services, a resource located in Living/Learning, helps seniors each fall with a series of events and functions geared toward approaching the professional world in the right manner and gaining exposure to its realities.
Holly Wilkinson, assistant director of Career Services, held a workshop called “Savvy Seniors Workshop: Strategic Job Skills” Oct. 10.
The workshop was designed to help students practice job interviews and highlight what employers are looking for in potential employees.
“I want you to think of anything good you’ve done in the past five years that has earned recognition,” Wilkinson said to participants. “Then think about your personal attributes which helped you gain this recognition.”
Wilkinson said that this is the best way to discover your best positive qualities and begin thinking of ways to promote these attributes to an employer.
She also went through a checklist of what employers are looking for in a potential employee, highlighting good problem solving and decision making, oral and written communications, analytical skills and leadership.
Wilkinson recognized that self-assessment is not a natural thought process for many to take.
“It’s awkward to do at first,” she said. “It really isn’t natural to brag about yourself.”
Ashley Fowler, a career counselor for Career Services, said that the biggest mistake students make while putting together their resume is to undermine prior accomplishments.
“Anything you’ve achieved individually says something about your character,” Fowler said. “That’s why I try to tell students to keep a continuous list of any particular achievements so ... you can pick from that list instead of having to search for it.”
Alex Colkitt, a public communications major and senior captain of the UVM Dance Team, attended the meeting looking for all the advice she could get.
“I’m trying to get into the fashion industry,” Colkitt said. “I’m coming to all of these workshops in order to do whatever I can to get into the job market right out of college.”
Colkitt said she wants to live an independent lifestyle right out of college and this workshop would help her to interact with employers in hopes of finding this transition.
Upcoming Savvy Seniors workshops will include learning how to use LinkedIn on Nov. 7 and working on networking on Nov. 28.
More information on Career Services and upcoming events can be found on their website at www.uvm.edu/~career/.