From college student to young professional

Dean Vaglia, Staff Reporter

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Getting a job is easier said than done, but you can learn how to land one.

One way to learn is through events like Internship U, a partnership event between Career Services and the School of Business Administration (SBA) on Thursday, Nov. 7. At the event, Sadie Grobbel from Northwestern Mutual in Troy walked students through the job search process with the insights that being a recruiter has given her. Jaclyn Fortier, an internship coordinator for the SBA, opened and provided insights during the event.

When making a resume, Grobbel prefers applicants provide her with “one clean page of information” that showcases many of the sought-after skills that employers look for. These are skills that are transferable, communication skills, time management, critical thinking/solving problems under pressure, working well in a team, showcasing emotional intelligence and displaying initiative in the workplace.

Even so, job applicants still have a simple way to stand out to employers.

“Be yourself,” Grobbel said. “I do not want some made up scenario, I do not need you trying to overly impress me — I know when I am in an interview with a candidate and they are telling me exactly what I want to hear — because it is not genuine … Be you, but keep it professional.”

For interviews, Grobbel recommends applicants hone their pitch by practicing with the STAR method — describe a Situation by explaining the Task, the Actions taken and the Results of the actions. Applicants should also dress business formal for interviews — suit and tie for men, conservative attire and accessories for women —  be prepared with knowledge of the company and position and try to avoid using phones before, during and after the interview.

“Leave your phone in your car,” Grobbel said. “Leave your phone turned off. Do not even bring it into the building. Whatever you have to do to stay away from it for that 45 minutes to an hour experience.”

Showing up early is a critical part of interviews, too. While some employers will have applicants fill out a questionnaire or survey, sometimes just getting to the interview can take too long.

“Especially if you have never been to the building before, sometimes the complex itself can be difficult to navigate,” Fortier said. “Always allow yourself that extra time because it can be confusing. And if you need to make that phone call … saying, ‘I am trying to find out where I am,’ it sounds better if you are making that phone call at 10:40 instead of 11:00 for an 11:00 interview.”

Do not forget to send the recruiter a thank you email — or do so through a letter to really stand out.

And just like that, students can turn their Oakland University education into lifelong careers. Should students need help with their interviewing skills, Career Services can help students get career-ready through walk-ins or by appointment.