Archive for the ‘CBcampus Ambassadors’ Category

cbbreeToday we hear from Bree, as she reflect on the key lessons she learned as a CBCampus Ambassador. Here’s what she’s taking away from this experience:

  • Communication is key! Being a communication major, I obviously appreciate this. However, there were a few times I was a little unclear about the task at hand and extra clarification and communication on my part would have helped.
  • Learn on the job….and quickly! Prior to being a marketing representative, I had never written blog posts. It took me a few times to figure out the style and what my company was looking for. This trial and error process is something I know I will use….often.
  • Ask for help! When I was struggling with things like formatting blogs or creating posters, I found the easiest way to get the job done was to ask for help. I can’t be too proud or I’ll never improve.
  • Learn from peers! Fortunately, I was able to contact marketing reps from other schools who had already been through the process. They were a great tool and didn’t make it seem like I was jumping into something blind folded. People before me have been there, done that. They knew what worked, and what didn’t. Using co-workers as a resource is vital to my success.
  • When I get knocked off the horse, I have to get right back on. Rejection is going to be a part of my career…whether I choose entertainment, marketing, public relations, etc. I’m going to get rejected. I experienced this a few times during my marketing endeavors, but I had to get over it really fast; I can’t let rejection phase me. Learn from the experience and move on!

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This week we’ll be featuring the last posts from our CBCampus ambassadors. They’re about to move on to that place you’ve all heard so much about: The Real World. So as they prepare to move on, we asked them for some final thoughts on what they learned during their time with us, both professionally and personally.

Morgan says…

cbmorganBlogging, for example requires me to write up some of my thoughts, thoughts that will forever be attributable to my name. I had to learn confidence to feel comfortable with accepting all ridicule as well as praise that could come from posting my ideas on the Internet. Mostly, my boost in confidence came when I had to organize as many friends as possible to be in a CBcampus photo for a photo contest. They thought it was ridiculous, but with persistence and good humor I was able to make my friends go along. Even though I thought it would be like pulling teeth to secure answers for the various surveys that we had to give to career center staff, it was rather easy. The lesson learned is that people will generally help you out and you shouldn’t worry that they will shut you down. The closer the people are to you, they can also do bigger favors…

The economic times that we’re in have impacted my work and experience at CBcampus. The new economic challenges we face now and will face in the future are ideas that affect student employment. As students we are uniquely situated in a confusing spot where there are no jobs, but we constantly hear that our education will take us so much farther. Things will change though, times will get better. My CBcampus experience has impacted the way I understand the world around me, and I am very thankful of that.

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Finally, a few more CBCampus Ambassadors share their advice for next year’s graduating class:

mike-s1Mike:  So, for the graduating class of 2010, I would say that when you are deciding what you want to do for a career make sure that it is something you care about and feel like you can be happy. This is the most important thing and the best advice I could offer. I cannot imagine being stuck in a career that you are miserable in but you are just doing it because of the money.

I know that I like certain areas and I am interested in other but I have not found the job that I could honestly say that I would love to do for the rest of my life. I mean no one ever told me that it was not all about how much your salary is or the benefits package. I feel like I have never really looked past the immediate gratification so I would advise the next class to look to a more fulfilling career.

cbnickNicholas: I guess that is what is good about college, is that everything you do or don’t do is a learning experience, the best thing you can do is to put yourself on the line to succeed or fail and then really reflect on your experience and try to learn from your mistakes.  The best advice I can give you is to try because if I promise you, you won’t want to look back and regret or imaging what could have happened if I just tried doing this.  The last and most important tip I can give you, is to have fun and live life, because the real world is coming just around the corner!

Andrew: Looking back over my four years, I wish I had made more of an effort to establish acbandrew consistent contact with my career center. I visited once during my freshman year, but at that point in my life, a career seemed far off. Since then, I have just recently started visiting again. The opportunities these centers provide to their students are endless and if properly utilized, can get you on the right path to any career you can aspire to have. It is crucial to start your career search as early as possible so that you can explore every opportunity your school may have for you.

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Whether or not you can have wisdom as a twenty-something about to graduate from college is debatable. But if you’re an undergrad counting down until your last final in 2010, I can’t think of anyone better to tell you how to spend your last year of schooling than this year’s graduates. They’re up to t heir tassels in finals, papers, and post-graduation planning right now. That’s exactly where many of you will be soon. Here’s what Bree has to say:

cbbreeThere a few random, insignificant moments throughout my life that I remember quite vividly, one of them being filling out my application for Purdue my senior year of high school. I specifically remember answer the question “Expected Graduation Date:_________” As I filled the blank with “May 2009,” I smiled as it seemed light-years away. It literally feels like maybe one year has gone by since then, when in reality four years have passed as I approach my graduation date. Along the journey, I’ve learned a few things — and not exactly from the classroom — that I wish I would have known back when. So to the class of 2010 and those to follow, here are some things to keep in mind:

  • Grades are very important, but not the world. Make sure you get involved, join social clubs, make friends and actually experience college. As musician Tom Petty once said “…the work never ends, but college does.”
  • Internship. Internship. Internship. It is the best thing I did in college. I found out before it was too late that news reporting wasn’t for me. I got the chance to tryout several jobs to see how they fit while gaining experience, learning what I’m good at and figuring out what I loved, and hated.
  • Start job hunting ASAP! Even if you think you already have things all worked out, it is so important to have options because things are always changing. I’ve really had my heart set on a particular internship and as it gets close to graduation time, it might not pan out. I’m scurrying to find other opportunities. I even have peers whose job offers have been revoked due to the economy. Always prepare for the worst and hope for the best when it comes to job hunting.
  • Start creating an on-going portfolio when you get some hands-on experience from internships or upper-level classes. They can be so useful to show an employer what you can really do come interview time.
  • And finally, enjoy your senior year. It without a doubt has been the fastest year of my life and though I’ve enjoyed it, I wish I had an extra month or two to really live it up.

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Dun-dun-dun-dun-da-dun-da-dun-da-dun-dun. <–That’s my “Pomp and Circumstance” transcription.

It’s that time of year when finals are starting and seniors are thinking, “Oooooh, geez, what did I spend the last four years of my life doing?” That’s natural, of course. Don’t we always feel unprepared for big events in our lives? It’s the cold feet before the wedding or the last-minute panic before you become a parent.

Although you’re likely to get a boat load of advice from your parents, extended family, and strangers, we thought you might prefer to hear what graduating seniors are going through. Thus, we asked some CBCampus Ambassadors to share their wisdom as they near the big day. After all, you’re 12 months from being in the exact situation they’re in. Here’s what Natalie wants you to know:

cbnatalieAs graduation looms closer and closer, I can’t help but reflect on my last four years.  And whether you’re ready or not, Class of 2010, soon you’ll be in my shoes asking yourself the same questions I’m asking myself: Why didn’t I get just one more internship? Why isn’t my GPA higher?  Why did I major in this?  How am I going to get a job in this economy?

Well, lucky for you, there’s another year until you graduate and I’d like to offer some advice.  Please note that I’m scared to graduate, too, and have yet to land a job.  However, here goes nothing:

Make your résumé now, even if you don’t need it yet.  The earlier you start, the longer you give yourself to critique it.  Take it to the career center and say “I have one year to make this perfect.  What else do I need to do to make it stand out?”  They might recommend volunteer work, another internship, etc.  Do it now so you’re not trying to do too many things your last quarter.

Don’t be a slacker!  Go to the library. If I had went to the library as much my freshman and sophomore years as I do now, I’d be in much better shape. It’s easy to get burnt out with heavy school loads, but cramming is, always was, and will always be a bad idea. I was always under the impression that GPA doesn’t matter. It does!  It’s an easy way for recruiting managers to discount your résumé right off the bat.

Start taking morning classes. Waking up early is hard, but most post-grad jobs will be in the 8-5 range.  Get used to it now so you’re more productive at work.  (Being more productive may lead to an earlier raise!)

Start researching companies you are interested in working for now.  It’s possible they have a really awesome internship program that you don’t know about.  Get your foot in the door early.  Try contacting their HR person to see what you can do the next year to stand out from their other applicants.  (It might be something that takes time, like learning certain computer software.)

Don’t flip out. Employers may have a sixth sense for desperation.  Make sure you give each company you’re interested in the attention it deserves.  Know everything on their website so you can sound informed and prepared for your interview. Work is a mutual relationship: they need you, but you probably need them even more.  Let them know you’re applying to their company because you could see yourself working there and really making a positive difference, not because you need a job… ANY job.

Relax.  You can always go to grad school.

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On Monday, CBCampus Ambassador Molly talked about her thoughts on starting salaries. Today we continue that discussion with some thoughts from other ambassadors.

kristina-pKristina’s expectations:
Since I’ll be graduating, to enter into an entry-level position, I’m hoping and assuming my salary will be somewhere near $30,000 a year.  Of what I have heard, this is a general amount to be searching for, especially for someone with a communications degree. During the harsh economic times, this is more than I could ask for.

Jessica’s game plan:
jessica-hAs a communication and advertising major with a public relations specialization, I expect to earn $35,000-$45,000 with my educational background.  I would like to work for an advertising agency as a assistant account executive.

This range is dependent on the city I choose to live and work.  However, I expect a slightly higher range if I am lucky enough to live in a major metropolitan city.

Within five years, I would like to earn between $40,000-$75,000.  I plan on my compensation increasing as I move into account executive or management positions.

mike-s1And Mike feels his generation’s been under so much pressure, they’re not unreasonable to expect high salaries:
After working very hard for 4-6 years, you expect that big payout where you can say “All my hard work has paid off.” Now we come to hear from our teachers that “Oh your expectations are unrealistically high.” Personally I think a decent starting salary for me is about $50,000 annually with all the bells and whistles to go along with that and then in five years, I think it should be close to $80,000. You might say that is high but I think that my peers and I would agree that my salary expectations are reasonable given the pressure and stress that we have been put through.

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Choosing a major is a personal process. Each student has his or her own reason to study a particular field. Some people view college as a chance for exploration; others see it as training for a job. Of course there are more reasons, and an endless combination of points of view on the matter.

Regardless of our chief reason for college, somewhere on the list is the notion that you’ll earn back the money you spend. After all, you might love the idea of an education for the experience of it all, but you’re probably not going to shell out a small fortune for medical school if you don’t actually intend to practice medicine and cover your costs. Everyone, I assume, hopes they’ll be able to find a job upon graduation and live on that salary, at least until they get a raise.

We asked CBCampus Ambassadors how much they expect to earn when they land their first job and how it influenced their education. First to offer her thoughts is Molly:

molly-bIn May, I will graduate with a degree in Communications and a specialization in public relations. I am glad I chose to major in these areas. They are something I am interested in. But the only problem: both communications and public relation positions are not at the high end of the salary continuum. After graduation, I expect to find a career where I make $30,000-$35,000 a year. Unfortunately, this number is far lower than some of my friend’s salaries who have already graduated in different areas of concentration. For example, I have a friend who majored in finance and his starting salary was $50,000.

Although an entry-level communications/public relations position has a low starting salary, there is always room for growth. Once experience is gained in these areas, an employee will eventually be promoted and qualified to take on higher positions. It is here where these professionals can make a greater salary – six figures or higher.

So yes – I still plan on achieving my big dreams, but I am going to have to work to get there. Although a starting salary for a communications/public relations position is lower than most other concentrations, I truly enjoy working in these areas. That’s all that counts, right?

How about you all? Did money play a huge role in picking a major? Are you happy with your decision?

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