How Involved are you?

How Involved are you?

Between orientations, the overwhelming amount of information presented to you, socializing and your busy class schedule it’s hard to find time to do much of anything! As your schedule becomes more routine and feelings of anxiety start to pass, it’s time to think about involvement.

Resting on your high school accomplishments won’t get you anywhere when it comes to procuring an actual job. It’s great you were a 4.0 student, who participated in three sports, spent hours feeding the homeless and numerous after school activities but all that is in the past and it’s time to look to the future.

Getting involved can be a number of things:

Volunteer: Find an organization that is near and dear to your heart. If you need help finding places to volunteer, ask a faculty member. Off the top of my head I can think of the convalescent center which entails playing bingo and socializing with elderly, Joliet Animal control, and feeding the homeless every Friday morning with USF ministry at Day Break.

Participate in a club: USF offers 30+ student clubs. There are social clubs, educational clubs, sports clubs, and everything in between! It is great way to add to your resume while having fun and gaining leadership skills. For a list of clubs click on the link below!

http://www.stfrancis.edu/student-services/clubs-organizations-honor-societies/clubs/#.V8R5vPkrLIU

***Mark your calendar for USF’s club fair!! September 11th 11:00-1:00 in the Quad

Sports: Whether you came to St. Francis as an athlete, or you have never picked up a ball in your life, the athletics family from St. Francis needs all sorts. Go out for a team or be a manager. Collegiate sports we offer include basketball, soccer, tennis, track, cross country, baseball, softball, bowling, dance, cheering, football and many more.

Trust me when I say College is a lot more fun when you get involved and it definitely helps to build your skills and your network which both can help you find employment.

Graduation is Here!

Graduation is here… at least for some and around the corner for others; however, it is essential to make sure your check list is in order. As seniors prepare to walk across the stage, transition to new opportunities or even continue with old ones, it is worth while to review your goals and create a self checklist.

Some things to put on your check list are:

  • Resume and/or Portfolio
  • Cover Letter
  • Practiced Mock Interviews
  • Network and contact list
  • Job Searched
  • Check content on Social Media
  • Updated accounts such as Linked In
  • Make a list of things you are good at
  • Assess yourself-Values, strengths, personality type, career orientation, etc
  • Visit the USF Career Success Center for resources and tips
  • Promote your self brand
  • Landed a Job
  • Ready to walk across the stage

Although these things may vary for everyone and may apply differently in your lives, it is great to have a personal check list. So make sure you have one and WALK ACROSS THAT STAGE with a plan in mind!

Let USF Career Success Center help you prepare.

Mock interviews, resume review & job boards

Tower N204

8:00-4:30 p.m

Reliniquish the Power from Stress!

Stress2

Preparing for life’s challenges, new beginnings and changes can be an overwhelming experience or even an exciting experience for some. As a student, there may be several modern demands placed upon you without time caring or slowing down to give you a chance to process such important transitions and decisions.

Whether you are getting ready to graduate, preparing to live on your own, job searching, starting a new job, starting a family, or just trying to finish that last assignment of the semester; life transitions can be hard and bring unwanted life and power to that six letter word…stress.

Stress is simply a reaction that causes disturbance in your physical or mental being. Too much stress can be harmful to your quality of life and those around. Although, some stress can cause you to perform under pressure, motivate you or help your prioritizing and management skills, relinquishing too much power and control can make you seem like a different person.

Here are some key tips to managing stress

  • Find a support system

It is okay to seek and ask for help when needed. Allow those around you, your friends and family to be a sense of support. Find individuals you can confide in to support you with life’s transitions and decisions.

  • Mediate

This can truly be a relaxing experience that takes your mind off of things and teaches you how to control your breathing in stressful situations if you allow it too.

  • Be present and have an attitude of gratitude

You do not want moments that you will never get back to past you by. Enjoy every step of the journey even if it may be challenging and be grateful that its not worse.

  • Laugh out Loud

Sometimes we become too serious and uptight with life’s transitions. Laugh a little and find the humor in life.

  • Plan

A great way to relieve stress is when you plan ahead and get things done. Prioritizing is a great skill to fuel your stress. You feel better when you have completed what you need too on time if not early.

  • Sleep

Nothing can be accomplish if you are sleep deprived and not fully refreshed. Some believe that there is no time for sleep or that the greatest leaders made it to where they are because of lack of sleep. Lies! You get to where you are because of your skills and talents and giving 100% of your healthy and well functioning self, not sleep deprivation.

So before you allow anxiety to build, fear to stir up or stress to be in control as you prepare for life’s transitions, remember that  you are in control and you are relinquishing the power from stress.

Let us help you prepare for interview, job search or internship by stopping by our office.

Career Success Center

Tower N204

The Message of a Business Card

business-cards

Business Cards, a little piece of heaven that helps facilitate your networking opportunities and allow others to follow up.

As time continues to evolve and technology continues to grow, some wonder if thank you cards are still an essential thing that is needed or carries weight… well the answer is YES. Business Cards continue to serve a purpose and provides a way for people to stay in touch and remember who you are and what you do.

Some individuals decide to create their own business cards while others utilize templates and programs. It is important that you are mindful of your line of work and the message you want to send. Some would prefer it to be simple, cheek and clean while others look for the creativity to shine through. Either way, there are basics that should be on every card.

  • Your Name
  • Your Email Address (Professional One)
  • Some sort of title
  • Number
  • Links to Social Media Platforms

Business cards help people to brand themselves without their physical presence needed. It makes a statement that you are a professional who is prepared and serious about what you do while leaving a personable touch. Business cards are simple tools that can go a long way to market yourself and who wouldn’t want that? Do you know the best part?

The Career Success Center here at USF offers to help create and print business cards for students.So let your creativity and professionalism shine by having a business card and stopping by the office before you graduate, go on that next interview or visit an upcoming career fair.

Location: Tower N204

Hours: Monday-Friday 8:00-4:30 p.m

Did you write your Thank You Note?

Thank-you-letter      People often wonder if sending a thank you note after interviews are necessary or helpful of their chance to landing a job. Should I bother, you ask?

Well the truth is, sending a thank you note couldn’t hurt. Although, it is not proven that it has an impact on you being hired, a well written thank you could make an impression. A thank you note reflects your ability to follow up, displays your appreciation and reiterates your interest in the position.

Things to Include in a thank you could be some of the following:

  • Interviewer Name
  • Specifics about the interview experience or important topics discussed
  • Position Title
  • Your gratitude

With the job market today, it is essential to be conscious of more ways to stand out while employers are looking for those who stand out. When thinking of leaving an impression on the employer among several other applicants, a thank you note can be the needed addition to push you to the top. The Career Center here at USF advises candidates to write hand-written thank you notes; as it could go a long way.

It was interesting to hear that during our career fair last week, an employer mentioned that she has worked in recruiting for five years and has only received a handful of thank you notes. Although, there are people who believe thank you notes are a waste of time, they serve a purpose and whenever in doubt, write one…be the handful.

Venting in the Workplace

venting

Venting in the workplace is not a thing of the past. It is still very relevant and common today. Venting in its own fashion or unfashionable design is a way to voice frustrations and share your perspective with anyone who is willing to listen. The tricky part is that venting can be viewed with a negative connotation if not done appropriately. It is essential to be mindful of your venting and the impact that it could have on others in the workplace. To keep venting in check, here are a few tips to keep in mind.

  • Venting leaves an impression of how others think of you at work. Something you do not want to do is taunt your professional reputation or be seen as the complaining one.
  • Don’t publicly complain and vent about your company and coworkers. This can paint a picture of immaturity and unprofessionalism. Someone is always listening even when the venting is not intended for them.
  • Your contribution to the team dynamic is important. Does your venting create a negative environment? Does it bring people down?
  • Try to think of other venting solutions that would be more appropriate such as writing your thoughts and opinions down in a journal.
  • Do not bottle up emotions until you reach an explosive point. This will be perceived poorly and may cause more frustration.
  • Vent outside of work
  • Confide in someone you can talk too.

So the next time you think about venting out loud, in the workplace or often, think about the valuable factors of venting and what it could do to your reputation and the other individuals you work with.

It’s Career Fair Time

media-professionals421

It’s Career Fair Time and nothing is more professional and effective then being prepared. There’s nothing worst then showing up and not at your best. Here are a few tips to help you prepare for the upcoming fair.

  • Bring copies of your resume

Have copies on hand and available speaks to the employer that you are serious about landing that job and that you came prepared to advertise yourself.

  • Dress appropriately

Make sure you know the dress code for the event which is usually business casual and that you have ironed and laid out your outfit in enough time to fix, clean or change anything.

  • Allow yourself adequate time

You can never really prepare for travel challenges, mishaps or trouble with parking. Allow yourself enough time to arrive at the fair and prepare before entering.

  • Research and be aware of organizations that interest you that will be at the fair.

Knowing who will be at the fair allows you prepare your questions in advance and prioritize those ones that you really want to interact with and learn more about.

  • Prepare a quick intro pitch to introduce yourself.
  • Practice some interview questions
  • Score Big…leave with more information or progress then you came in.

Career

USF Career Success Center Career Fair

April 8, 2016

9:00 a.m-12:00 p.m

Pat Sullivan Center

Registration Link: http://www.stfrancis.edu/careerfair2016-students-alumni-1/#.VusQG463GGM

Do you know the Importance of Career Fairs?

job-fair

Hey! It’s Career Fair season and a great time to get out there if you are looking to land that next job. Often times people let career fairs slide under the radar and ignore not only the benefits but the experience that come from attending. Career fairs present awesome networking opportunities, a more effective way to reach multiple organizations at once, an opportunity to gain experience and witness professional behaviors. An even better note is that a good chuck of them are free resources.

Career Fairs help make the connections that go beyond resumes, applications and emails. Fairs present a platform for you to shine and exercise your personal branding. Participating in a job fair can significantly help with your chances of landing a job and getting noticed.

Career Fairs in this time and age is not something to be taken lightly neither easily dismissed and should be be attended; not just for the exposure but the great learning opportunities. So get out there and take advantage of those career fair opportunities and make it happen for your future.

Breaking News!

USF Career Success Center Career Fair

April 8, 2016

9:00 a.m-12:00 p.m

Pat Sullivan Center

Registration Link: http://www.stfrancis.edu/careerfair2016-students-alumni-1/#.VusQG463GGM

Participating Organizations:

  • Alliance
  • AMITA Health
  • Banker’s Life
  • Barrett Hardware Co.
  • Bethesda Lutheran Communities
  • Big Brothers Big Sisters
  • BrightStar Care of Will County
  • Burke Beverage, Inc.,Caterpillar Inc.
  • Catholic Charities of Diocese of Joliet
  • Channahon Park District
  • ChildCare Careers
  • Cintas
  • Cornerstone Services
  • Dayton Freight Lines
  • Fastenal Company
  • First Midwest Bank
  • Greater Joliet Area YMCA
  • GW & Associates, P.C.
  • Harrah’s Joliet Casino & Hotel
  • Heartland Bank and Trust
  • Heartland Dental
  • Hematogenix Laboratory Services
  • Hopewell Academy-Joliet
  • Illinois Department of Children and Family Services
  • Indian Oaks – Nexus Treatment Site
  • Hub Group
  • Jewel-Osco
  • Joliet Police Department
  • Joliet Public Schools 86
  • Joliet Township High School
  • Knights of Columbus
  • Lakewood Nursing Center
  • Legacy Professionals LLP
  • Misericordia Home
  • Marianjoy Rehabilitation Hospital
  • NAI Hiffman
  • New York Life
  • OneMain Financial
  • Primerica Inc.
  • Riverside Healthcare
  • Rosewood Care Centers
  • Schneider Logistics
  • Speedway LLC.
  • USF Graduate Studies
  • USF Ministry
  • USF Solutions – Summer Youth Camps
  • United States Air Force
  • United States Cold Storage
  • Werner Enterprises

and so much more!

8 Career Tips for Young Women Who Want to Be the Boss

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Despite high-profile executives like Sheryl Sandberg and General Motors CEO Mary Barra proving women can lead just as well as men, many young women are still being overlooked in the workplace. According to a 2011 article in the Harvard Business Review, many women do not speak up or feel confident at work, leading them to be passed over for potential promotions and raises.

Kathryn Heath, one of the article’s authors and managing partner at the consulting firm Flynn Heath Holt Leadership, says this insecurity could stem from a lack of female lack of female colleagues or bosses.

“If you are the only woman in the room, it is hard to be confident,” she says.

Michele Gelfand, psychology professor at the University of Maryland​, suggests the discomfort women feel when ​negotiating for higher salaries and promotions in their careers occurs because they are trained to be nonconfrontational. It’s not enough for women to simply be good at their job, she says – standing up for themselves is also key to becoming the boss. ​

“Even if you are working hard and doing well, you really need to be stepping up to the plate and asking for things,” Gelfand says.

Here are eight pieces of career advice for young women who want to beat the boys and become the boss:​ ​

Promote yourself. Although self-promotion is a key step for women who want to get noticed in the workplace, many of them feel uncomfortable speaking out about their accomplishments. ​
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“[In]​ their early life, girls have been rewarded for following the rules and not speaking out,” says Jane Finette, founder and executive coach at The Coaching Fellowship, a coaching center for young women leaders. “It’s just not something girls have been trained to do.”

Working hard at your ​job isn’t enough to get noticed, ​says Peggy Klaus, author of “Brag!: The Art of Tooting Your Own Horn Without Blowing It.” Young women should take initiative and tell their colleagues and bosses about tasks they’re working on, upcoming projects, obstacles they have overcome and their overall value in the organization, she says.

​​”You really do need to let your boss, your boss’s boss [and] your colleagues know what it is that you are doing,” Klaus says.

Write down your achievements. To help young women remember all those accolades in their careers, Jenn DeWall, a Denver-based ​certified career coach​, recommends keeping a running list of successes. She says this document will help you remember your accomplishments when it’s time to advocate for a promotion or apply to jobs.

​”We typically have so much going on,” DeWall says. “… we sometimes forget to validate our accomplishments and achievements.”

Even if you have not been in the workforce for long, the list will help remind you of your value to employers. “Do not just think that because you are young in years that you do not have things to offer,” Klaus says. ​

Ask for more. Negotiating is one of the most challenging tasks for young​ women professionals. Men negotiate more often than women and feel more comfortable doing it, according to Gelfrand’s research. This poses a major problem for women, she says, given that negotiating is key to advancing in your career.

“Even if you are working hard and doing well, you really need to be stepping up to the plate and asking for things,” she says.

To become more comfortable with negotiating, Gelfand suggests women find out what is negotiable in their workplace and proactively ask for more. “I would definitely recommend women take this skill as seriously as they do finance or accounting, because this is really going to help the bottom line of their salary and of their advancement,” she adds. ​

Reference

Networking is Key!

Networking

Network…that seven letter word that could cause someone to be thrilled by the excitement of meeting others  or anxious by the overwhelming thought of meeting others; either way, networking is an essential skill that is beneficial in your your career journey.

Networking is identified in this blog as a skill because it is just that, something that does not come naturally for everyone. Networking has to be something that is practiced and put to intentional use. It is the skill of developing relationships and building partnerships, especially those that support your career goals. It is almost like a game to see how many people you know and who knows you. Through these connections and relationships, endless opportunities can begin and continue to flourish for you professionally and personally.

College students fail to understand the importance of networking and how it should take place before you graduate to help you be more successful after you leave college. Your networking contacts can consist of family and friends, teachers, employers, community members and others. Networking can happen in various ways, various places and with various individuals. Networking if intentional can be a great formula to your future success.

Keep in mind these tips.

  • Remember networking doesn’t have to wait until after college but should start NOW!
  • Networking isn’t just building relationships and connections but maintaining them, too. Make an effort to check in from time to time.
  • Networking can happen anytime and any where so be prepared.
  • Use Social Media to your advantage to network.Remember that you are being viewed and that online presence matters.

Now go Network!