Friday, September 26, 2014

Find YOUR Next Opportunity at the AU Career Fair!

 By Brittany Cermak, Career Assistant

Find YOUR Next Opportunity at the AU Career Fair – October 7th, 2014, 1 pm-4 pm

Are you thinking about your future career path? Whether that includes finding a job or internship in your field of study, or continuing your education by going to Graduate School, come visit the AU Career Fair on October 7th from 1-4 pm in Upper Convo. Employers and Colleges such as Cintas, Cleveland Indians, Progressive Insurance, Ohio State University, & Bowling Green State University will be seeking hard-working, motivated and skilled students for full-time jobs, seasonal jobs, internships and graduate school. 

Do not miss out on this chance to network which may lead to your most important internship or first job! Be sure to bring several copies of your resume, dress professionally and research companies and schools ahead of time to make your best first impression.
If you need help creating or revising your resume, be sure to visit the AU Career Services Center during walk-in hours from 12-5 pm Monday-Friday. 

If you have not already registered, visit the AU Career Connect page now.

Wednesday, September 17, 2014

A Post-Interview Checklist: Increasing Your Professionalism and Building Rapport

 by Lindsey Cerimele

Career fair season is in full swing! If you just attended Meet the Accountant Night, or if you are planning to attend the upcoming J.M. Smucker's Internship Fair or the Fall Internship & Graduate School Fair, you will want to follow up professionally. Just when you think an internship fair is over, remember the steps and processes that will increase your chances of getting an internship and build your rapport with employers.

There are a few important follow-up steps to the interview process, and they are crucial to ensuring you secure the position you are looking for. Below is a short checklist of steps that should be taken after the interviewing process has occurred. 

 Show enthusiasm for position applied for: Your excitement will show employers dedication to the company and put you at the top of the list of qualifying candidates.

Send thank you note: Immediately send a written letter or electronic note to the employers you were in contact with. Thank you letters reiterate your interest in a position and convey your appreciation for the time the employer took to meet with you.

Notify your references: Notify your listed references of your recent interview or career fair visit so they are able to speak about your qualifications to the employer.

Follow up: If you have not heard from the employer within 12-14 days after an interview, make a follow up phone call to check on the status of your application and let the company know you are still interested. Remember to practice patience, as you do not want to seem desperate or needy.

Abiding by these few simple rules can put you above many other candidates and increase your professionalism and reputation tenfold. For more detailed interview steps and guidelines, refer to the Interviewing Guide, available on the AU Portal through the link below.

Good luck!

Tuesday, September 9, 2014

Prepare for Meet the Accountant Night

Are you ready for Meet the Accountant Night? On Thursday, September 11th, from 5:30-7 pm, 17 organizations will be in the Dauch College of Business and Economics looking to meet Ashland University students interested in internships and employment opportunities.

If you are planning to attend, there are a few things you should prepare beforehand, and keep in mind during the event:

Before the Event

Develop a 30-second introduction.

To start a conversation with an employer, you will first need to introduce yourself. Please review our previous blog post on How to Introduce Yourself at a Career Fair for more information on preparing and practicing a nice summary for the event.

Research the organizations.

The list of attending organizations is posted on the Career Services website. Before the event, it would be a good idea to visit the webpage of the organizations you are interested in, so you can learn more about the company or organization and about accounting opportunities with their company. You could also research the organizations by searching for them in Glassdoor.

Prepare your resume.

Before the event, have your resume reviewed in Career Services. Resume reviews are available on a walk-in basis from noon to 5 pm, Monday through Friday. You should also print your resume on high-quality bonded resume paper. Resume paper is available in the Career Services Center for just 5 cents a sheet, or at stores including the Ashland University Bookstore, OfficeMax, Office Depot, Staples, and probably most big-box stores, like Target, Meijer, or Wal-Mart.

Prepare your outfit.

You will also want to make sure you look the part before the fair. We ask that all attendees at Meet the Accountant Night dress at least business casual, but candidates who are actively seeking jobs and internship opportunities in the near term are encouraged to dress in suits. Please review our attire pamphlet to learn more about what is considered "business casual".

During Meet the Accountant Night

Possess a Positive Attitude

A positive and professional attitude is imperative during the entire event. Practice these actions:
  • Greet everyone you meet with a smile and firm handshake.
  • Use positive words to express your interests when answering questions.
  • Do NOT talk negatively about former supervisors, co-workers, jobs or organizations.
  • Smile and show enthusiasm throughout your entire discussion.

Create a Strong First Impression

The first impression you make while networking is critical. You need to display confidence, professionalism and poise. An employer will remember if the first impression you made was a positive one. Keep the following items in mind to create a positive impression during the first ten seconds of the discussion:
  • Smile and greet each person with a firm handshake.
  • Make appropriate eye contact.
  • Use appropriate grammar.
  • Do NOT chew gum.
  • Be sincerely interested in what the interviewer is saying and respond with questions or comments related to information he/she provided.
  • Show enthusiasm and interest in the organization.
  • Be respectful of everyone you meet and appreciative of the time spent speaking with you.

Verbal and Nonverbal Communication Skills

Verbal Communication: When answering questions, be sure to use examples whenever possible.  By using examples, employers will know what experiences you have had in the past and what skills you could bring to their organization.  Examples can be taken from the classroom, leadership, work, community service and life experience.

Ask employers for their business cards.  After you leave the table, turn the business card over and make notes about your conversation.  Do not do this in front of the employers; take a few steps away. 

Be sure to use proper grammar at all times while networking. Avoid slang and fillers such as “like”, “um”, “cool”, “awesome”, “yeah” or “you know”. It is appropriate to take a moment to think about and formulate your answer once a question has been asked.

Nonverbal Communication: Be sure your nonverbal communication is appropriate during the event. Stand tall, smile and deliver a firm handshake. Maintain eye contact with the employer and do not look around the room when having a conversation.  Do not take notes or fidget while talking.  It may become distracting to the employer.

Employers expect participants to be a little nervous, but you can still be an effective communicator. By practicing your 30 Second Pitch aloud, your conversations will flow much easier with employers. 

Let us know how we can help!

If you have any questions before Meet the Accountant Night, please contact the Career Services Center, or stop in for our walk-in hours, noon - 5 pm.