Advent Christmas work

December 2: Mock Interviews

Day 2: Grateful for employment and a career path I enjoy.

Today at work we had the opportunity to do a mock interview session with students from SJSU (San Jose State University). These students are part of a business club and came to our offices to learn more about credit unions. While we only spent an hour doing the mock interviews, it really took me back to the days before my first job.

The students were all confident, asked great questions, and were super respectful. That I am somehow nearly 20 years older than them is mind boggling to me. One person asked the question of how we got our first job out of college.

Well, right out of UCSB (UC Santa Barbara! Go Gauchos!) I kept in touch with my sorority sisters. A former roommate of mine pointed me to a company that was hiring, and she and I both got jobs at that company. Fast forward to last year and I got my current job through a contact I met way back at the first job out of college. Networking works. Never be shy about asking people if they know of openings, if they’d pass your resume along, and never be afraid to market yourself when you are looking for work.

Once we become adults and leave school behind, work becomes our life, and we have to adapt to our new workplaces and its cultures, which let me tell you, can be a big step, especially if it’s your first time. And some may find this transition easier than others. Some may only have one interview with an HR worker before they are offered the job, but for others it could take longer. I’ve often wondered how human resources decide who is the right fit for the job and who isn’t, seeing as you only have a short period of time with the potential employees. They must have to apply certain things to this job, and so they may need to have particular skill sets. What happens in a HR career will always remain a mystery to me, but maybe it is one that I want to learn more about in the future. And then I will be the one sitting across the table interviewing people for a job, just as I did to help these students.

This experience left me so grateful for my friends, and for finding my way to a career (Project Management) that I really love.

Here I am putting together some creative displays at work before a big party. This photo is by Gerard Lozano, photographer extraordinaire.

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  • Liz
    December 15, 2011 at 7:00 am

    I have been blessed to have had Respiratory Therapy students come into the sleep lab for the past two months. It’s nice to see fresh faces and ones that are so excited to be entering a field where recognition is lacking. It reminded me that I have lots to be thankful for job wise!

  • Paula
    December 15, 2011 at 9:12 pm

    What really struck me when doing the interviews was the question that a student asked about how my education played in to my job now.

    Well, um, back in ’94, there was probably not a formalized role for something as a “Web Project Manager,” let alone course work to teach someone how to do it. I know speakers often tell classes of 10 year olds that many of the jobs they will eventually hold aren’t even “invented” yet … and that was the truth for me.

    My answer was that I learned by doing, and a good liberal arts degree taught me creative problem solving and critical thinking, which have been super helpful.