Two things that help to determine what path a person’s career will take are a resume and an interview. Both can be used as marketing tools. This is why Living Learning Communities, a Title III Program at GSU, hosted a workshop entitled Preparing for a Career. Anefertiti Bowman and David Dirks, ambassadors to GSU’s Career Services, were the facilitators for the workshop. The program began with a prayer by Cory Robinson and a welcome by Ariel Satisfield.
Melanie C. Thomas, resource assistant to the LLC coordinator, planned the workshop. “After graduation, students seek gainful employment. Good resumes can help them to secure interviews, which help them to secure good careers or internships.”
Bowman and Dirks began by discussing the resume.
Dirks said, “A resume is an outline of your skills. It is a work in progress. It is never done because you are always working and acquiring new skills.”
Bowman said that the objective is the first thing employers look at. “Do not put ‘I’ in your objective. Put a good grade point average. List anything that shows leadership skills. Under ‘duties,’ use action verbs. Use words that capture attention.”
“What did you accomplish? What did you do that will put you above other potential employees? These are the things you need to include on your resume,” said Bowman.
Dirks said, “Do not use a template. Start in a blank document. Make sure that your objective is clear. Make sure that your resume is tailored to what you want to do.”
According to Dirk, work study and volunteer work can be listed under the experience section. “Put down work that you can come up with at least three bullets for,” he said.
“Make sure that your grammar is correct. Check your punctuation and spelling. Try to turn in a one-page resume,” said Dirks.
After telling the students how to prepare resumes, Bowman and Dirks shared useful interviewing techniques. Bowman said that people should wear shades of gray, black, and navy. Men should wear a full suit and tie, and skirt suits are the preference for women.
She said, “Make sure the skirt is below the knee. As for make-up, less is best. Wear neutral lip gloss and stud earrings, nothing dangling or too distracting.”
“Be at least 15 minutes early; you will be late if you show up 10 minutes early. Do not look down when you are shaking hands. Ladies, be firm,” said Dirks. “Do not chew gum.”
He said, “You should research the company. Know its history and fun facts. Learn about the company’s profits and gains and current events. You can use them during the interview. When you are answering questions, use the STAR analysis – situation, task, action and result. You can use this to answer any question.”
“It is a good idea to follow up after the interview. An e-mail is usually the best way to follow up,” said Dirks.
Bowman and Dirks told students that g.p.a.’s are important, but so is experience, and even if a student does not have at least a 3.0 GPA, he or she is still marketable and capable of securing a good career. “Do not let your g.p.a. hold you back,” said Bowman.
Dirks said, “Do not pigeonhole yourself. The potential employer does not know you. It is up to you to sell yourself.”
Clair Lewis, director of the program, said, “The Living Learning Communi-ties program is designed to expose students to all of the available resources on campus. We want them to have the skills and knowledge that will prepare them for the workforce.”
Workshop attendee Lanequa Jackson, a nursing major from Alexandria, said, “I learned how to create a better resume. Also, I learned what to expect when I go on an interview. I think that this workshop was very beneficial.