Optimal Resume is an amazing resource for any engineering student to obtain valuable feedback on their resume and to enhance their professional image. If you’ve never heard of it before, I highly recommend checking it out on Handshake > Career Center > Resources. At this time, I am going to provide a summary of the great feature that Optimal has to offer!
Today, I will provide a summary of the weekly webinar “Advice from a Technical Manager.” given by Alan Wright, Senior University Relations Recruiter for Cree/Wolfspeed. Available on Handshake, this weekly series invites various industry professionals to provide their advice on obtaining the job that you want and answering any questions related to your career development that you may have. Also, Keysight and Intel are coming soon, so I highly recommend checking it out!
From the beginning, Mr. Wright stressed the importance of having a usable network. As the saying goes, “it’s not what you know, it’s who you know.” You’ll need to spend a lot of time building good relationships with peers and professionals through LinkedIn, Handshake, on-campus professional organizations (such as IEEE, NESBE, SHPE, SWE, or SASE), networking events, career fairs and more; however, this hard work will pay off by opening doors that were inaccessible before. For example, many companies work closely with professional organizations and thus offer their members new opportunities before the general public. The network isn’t only useful to land a job though; once you have a position, your contacts can help answer questions you may have, gain new skills, understand the workplace better, or even recommend a good restaurant to try. As Mr. Wright stated, progressing through the industry is similar to the letter “Z.” To further illustrate, there’s quite a bit of lateral movement in order to learn more skills and create new experiences that ultimately make you a great candidate for a promotion. Your network ties directly into this motion: the more people you know, the more skills you can acquire! For now, a good start would be working with the Career Services Office. The Fulton Career Center is in constant contact with the professionals who will eventually be the ones reviewing your resume, so our resources can help you be an outstanding candidate!
As resumes are an unavoidable aspect of the job search, Mr. Wright provided his advice here as well. Resumes should be straight-forward and concise to neatly fill one page; if you decide to use two pages, make sure you fill *all* two pages, not just one and a quarter. The template that the Fulton Career Center provides is one of the best formats that Mr. Wright has seen, and he believes there’s no need to deviate from it. He stated that color and utilizing a different paper size than 8.5” x 11” is unnecessary, and may even give a bad first impression. As for content, Mr. Wright emphasized the display of transferable skills. Internships are an invaluable experience to show knowledge of engineering skills, but that doesn’t mean academic projects are unnecessary. If you have no internship experience, he recommends discussing your role in a group project. For example, establishing a schedule and creating the PowerPoint presentation for the class can still demonstrate leadership and time management, which are valuable skills regardless. Unrelated work experience such as being a cashier in a fast food restaurant can be handled similarly – it can also demonstrate transferable communication skills or accountability. Mr. Wright spoke for most recruiters when he said that they understand you don’t have professional experience. They want to give you that experience. As such, show your transferable skills to demonstrate your ability to succeed in the offered position.
Mr. Wright delved into a lot more topics, but I felt these were the most important points that he discussed. If this advice piqued your interest, then tune in for Stacy Johnson from Keysight on Wednesday, June 17, 2020, at 4 p.m.!
** This blog was written by Keene Patarakun, Peer Career Coach
The first step in getting the most of out Handshake is to claim your Handshake account. Handshake asks the student to answer a variety of questions from their major and GPA to their ideal industries. When logging onto Handshake’s home page, at the bottom there is a list of jobs that are selected just for you based on factors like your major, GPA, if you require sponsorship and more. When beginning your internship/job search, this is the easiest way to apply to multiple jobs that you’re qualified for. If you’ve already uploaded your general technical resume to Handshake, applications can be submitted with a single click. However, make sure to apply directly to company websites as well!
Scheduling an appointment with a career development professional or peer career coach — Jessica’s Tip of the Week
Are you looking for assistance with the career development process but don’t know where to start? The Fulton Schools Career Center is here to ensure that you have a smoother transition as you are navigating the stages and phases of the career development process. It certainly shouldn’t be daunting, and you shouldn’t have to go through the process with absolutely no direction or guidance at all. Our team of professional staff and peer career coaches are knowledgeable and caring individuals who demonstrate a desire to help others through the career development process. As a career development professional with 15 years of experience, I strongly believe that the most impactful one-on-one career counseling appointments are about establishing the relationship to be able to guide you in the right direction and to empower you to be successful.
At the present time, I have the pleasure of working with professional career development staff as well as peer career coaches who assist students with a variety of career development topics. The appointments are typically scheduled through Handshake, and then receive your personal link to meet via Zoom from your peer career coach.Once you are in Handshake, you can select the career development topic that you would like to discuss in your one-on-one session by selecting an appointment type with a professional staff member or a peer career coach.
Topics for one-on-one sessions include:
- Gathering occupational information on an engineering specialty or major
- Reviewing your resume, cover letter or LinkedIn
- Interview do’s and don’ts
- Internship or job search assistance
- Salary negotiation
- Networking/informational interviews
- Or any topic of your choice
You also have the opportunity to enhance your interviewing skills through a simulated mock interview or coding interview session. In addition to scheduling an appointment with a career development professional or a peer career coach, I would now like to promote our webinars to also assist you with navigating the career development process. You can access our webinars on Handshake as well. We have a series of career development topics that we are conducting throughout the summer.
Career readiness is such an important concept in the field of career development, and by applying the National Association of Colleges and Employers (NACE) 8 core competencies, you will grow as a future professional, and increase your career readiness levels. Last week, I illustrated the concept of career management. At the present time, I am going to illustrate global/intercultural fluency. Next, I will define, highlight and provide examples of this competency.