Say Thank You

There is one key step in the interview process many people seem to forget. They concentrate on the questions and what to wear then breathe a sigh of relief when it is over. But it is not over! After the interview there is the thank you note. This key piece of paper can help you get the dream job you want so much. It allows you the opportunity to thank the interviewer for the interview and let them know one more time why you would make the best person for the position. The thank you letter could be the tipping factor in the decision process for some.

So now that you know you should really, really write one here are some facts/tips to guide you.

  • Send the thank you letter within 24 to 48 hours of the interview. This will keep you fresh in the interviewer’s thoughts plus you want them to get it before they make a decision.
  • Your thank you can either be typed, written, or emailed. Choosing which one is a judgment call. If you want a formal letter go with typed, personal hand written, and email if you know the person prefers that type of contact.
    • If it is hand written remember to write legible. If the interviewer cannot read your writing the letter will loose its value as a tool to promote yourself.
  • Your thank you letter does not have to be on fancy paper or cards. You can buy nice thank you cards at Wal-mart or other similar stores at a low cost. Just make sure your cards are professional looking and do not feature the cute bunny rabbit motif.

Check out these links to find more tips on writing a thank you letter.

Do you have any other tips or suggestions about writing thank you notes?

Advertisements

Finding That Summer Job

We are on the verge of a hot, humid summer but are you going to go to the beach everyday? For most people that is just not possible.

In our fantasies we would be spending the hot days of summer at the beach or lying by the pool. Unfortunately, we do not live in our fantasies but are faced with reality. Do you have your summer job lined up? No? Then stop by the Career Center and check out the different opportunities we can show you for summer employment.

One resource is CISTERNonline. It is our online database with job listings, both part-time, internships, and full-time positions. And if you are a student at the College of Charleston you already have an account to look up available positions. Go to this address: http://cisternonline.erecruiting.com/er/security/login.jsp to get started. And if this is your first time logging in the website will walk you through the process.

Tip: If you want to find a part-time job that is in Downtown Charleston, type in Downtown in the keyword section. Your results will list only downtown jobs.

If working outside of the Charleston area for summer is more your style go to http://www.cofc.edu/~career/helpfulweblinks-location.html#seasonal and look under Summer/Seasonal Jobs. These are great resources for finding a summer position but you better hurry summer is almost here!

More Great Websites to Help with Career Development and the Job Search!

Job Interview Questions

A great website for all things related to the interview. It has thousands of questions that you may run into during the job interview. The site also gives great tips for generating your own questions and different ways to prepare for and follow-up after the interview.

Researching Companies Online

One of the most important steps in the job search process is researching the company you want to work for. This helpful website walks your through the process and shows you different ways you can find information about different companies and organizations.

Career One Stop

Great website full of information for the various stages in the career development and job search processes. Watch short videos about different occupations, discover salary information, get help with writing a resume, and more!

CNN’s Cost of Living Calculator

Many of you will most likely move away from the Charleston area but how much is it going to cost living in Seattle or Dallas? Check out this website to compare different cities and find out how much it is going to cost.

Association Job Boards

One of the best tools in finding jobs in specific fields or industries is to find the relevant associations. This website helps alleviate some of the stress of finding those associations.

Experience through Volunteering

Did you know that most employers expect college graduates to have 1 to 2 years of experience? You are now wondering how on earth are you supposed to gain experience while in school. The most obvious answer would be either part time jobs or internships. But there are other great ways to gain relevant experience beyond the paid ones. Volunteering!

When I say volunteering I do not necessarily mean working at the homeless shelter or at a soup kitchen. While these are great endeavors they may not give you the experience you need. In order to gain relevant experience and knowledge while volunteering you need to volunteer at places that are relevant to where you want to work post graduation. There are several ways you can achieve these experiences.

First, located the organizations and businesses that are in the industry you want to later work in or have similar atmospheres. After locating these places it is up to you to approach them. This is not the time to be shy but to be bold and assertive. Approach them just like you would if you were seeking employment but let the organization know that you want to volunteer in order to gain valuable experience in the field.

Another way you can gain valuable experience through volunteering is through the Office of Service Learning (http://www.cofc.edu/~servicelearning/) in the Lightsey Center. These may not be a hundred percent relevant to your future career goals but they can provide you with transferable skills they may be needed in the future. Most of these opportunities may give you leadership and communication skills that will benefit you in the future. Plus volunteering will give you the satisfaction of helping others.

Or you can contact the Trident United Way office. They offer great opportunities to volunteer in the area. Check out their website at www.tuw.org and see what you can do to help others and boost your volunteer activity. The Career Center also has a Trident United Way directory that you as a student can pick up for FREE!  So what are you waiting for?

Can you think of other ways you can gain experience? Or another way to find volunteer opportunities?

Resources for the Arts Management Major

One of the biggest resources a student in any discipline can have is their professors.  These are the people who have studied in certain areas to a great extent and have numerous contacts and resources in the field.  Please contact them for more in-depth information.

In the Career Center we have several print resources that have great information about possible career fields for the art major by Blythe Camenson.

  • Careers in Art
  • Great Jobs for Art Majors
  • Great Jobs for Liberal Arts Majors

There are hundreds of others books that may also peak your interest.  Remember a major does not equal a career so even if you have that Arts Management degree you are not necessarily pointed at the art industry as seen in our alumni Arts Management majors.

The Internet is another great resource to use when trying to find more information about a field of study or career interest.  Here are some great websites that may interest you:

These are only a few of the thousands of websites out there for the Art Management major.  Explore the links at the Arts Management Program for more great sites.  Do you know of other sites that may interest Arts Management majors?  Share them!

Careers Beyond the Border

In the last hundred years or so the world has changed so much. Now it takes just seconds to converse with someone in another country versus weeks. And traveling between the borders is a common occurrence. We now live in a global community where we can and do actively participate in the world outside our borders. Because of this global view more and more people are choosing to study and work abroad. But where do you find these opportunities to explore the world? The study abroad experience is easy. Check out the Center for International Education where they have a lot of different learning opportunities around the world.

Finding a career or just a summer job abroad may be a little more challenging. Looking for a position locally is hard enough, but add in the distance factor (thousands of miles) it becomes even more challenging to locate and obtain those positions. There are a lot of different resources you can use to help you with the Career Beyond the Border dilemma. But take caution on setting all your hopes and dreams on landing your first job abroad.

“Every year, the Career Center sees numerous students who have studied or traveled abroad, and who want to continue to gain international experiences through working abroad after graduation. The reality is that finding an international job is a very challenging task, and professional jobs overseas are not generally available to entry-level applicants. However, there are opportunities and programs available for upcoming and recent graduates for work abroad experiences. Many of these programs have application deadlines well in advance of your graduation date, and some require fees for processing paperwork for visas, so if working abroad after graduation is one of your goals, it is important that you begin to explore programs and application requirements as soon as possible.” –Linda Robinson, Full Time Job Coordinator at the Career Center

Some things to try to help boost your resume in order to gain a Career Beyond the Border:

  • Rack up the time spent abroad—the more experience you have in other countries will benefit you—think more than just one semester
  • Hone your foreign language skills—what company will want to hire you if you cannot speak the language of the country you will be working in?
  • Try to get an internship working abroad or try a service organization in another country to gain experience

Check out the links on the Career Center’s website for more help on locating information about working abroad (http://www.cofc.edu/~career/helpfulweblinks-location.html#international)

Also look at Making the Difference a website devoted to federal jobs in international relations. You may not work immediately in another country but these will give you the exposure that is essential to you and your career goals.

Do you have any advice for other students seeking experience in other countries?

 

Finding Full-time Jobs in Charleston

When you left home the first time for college, the majority of you did not know where you wanted to be after four years of school. Some of you might have had an idea about the type of job or career. Or, some even might have had the geographical location down. But it is a trend for many graduating students to want to remain in Charleston after living here for four plus years. It is a great city with many things to offer, but now you are wondering how do I find a job in Charleston doing what I want to do? Well, there are a lot of different ways you can go about the job search with the Charleston area as your focus.

One of the best resources for finding professional positions is CISTERNonline. This system is hosted by us, The Career Center. On CISTERNonline you can search nation wide, but you can also limit your search to a geographic area including Charleston and limit your search with keywords or other parameters. And the only requirement to search on this site is that you are either a College of Charleston student or Alum.

Another great tool for the local job search is the newspaper. The Post and Courier lists hundreds of positions in their classifieds section (http://www.charleston.net/) Yes, there are the part-time and non-professional jobs listed but it lists professional careers too. With this tool (like the majority of them) you should check it weekly. New jobs are constantly being listed so you need to stay on top of them before someone else snaps up your dream job.

And finally, have you thought about the Charleston Chamber of Commerce member list? This is a list of all the member business in the Charleston area. You can narrow your search by industry and such. The list is a great resource to finding business and contact information. Use the list to start your networking endeavors and start sending letters and resumes!

Do you know of any other great resources? We are always looking for more great websites or tools to suggest to the students and alum of the College of Charleston. Share your sites and let’s start searching for that perfect career!