Lessons

The Most Future-Proof Career Advice Ever

Marina will take over @WorkingOrange on Thursday, October 22.

By Marina Zarya, ’11; G ’13, Time Inc., Video Producer, Branding + Culture

Now that I’ve got your attention with my very-catchy headline, I’ll warn you that the actual advice part of this post will be underwhelming.

Ready?

My advice to you, eager Syracuse University student, is BE KIND.

Yes, that’s it. The job you’ll have soon does not exist yet, and your skills will keep evolving to meet market demands. What won’t change is how you should treat people. And if this is the part where you’re clicking off the page, that’s OK, you’ve read the most important part and I hope it sticks. If you’re enjoying my snippy prose, you’ll be pleased to note that I’ve prepared a few examples to illustrate what I mean.

/bē/ verb; Exist
/kīnd/ adjective; Of Kin, gracious, congenial, altruistic, accommodating

Put the two words together and they mean to exist in empathy, act with integrity, humility, and grace. This is a way of being. A state of mind that everyone is capable of tapping into and effectively living in. Please don’t misinterpret this as a suggestion to be lovey-dovey 100% of the time or to let people walk over you.

“Be Kind” doesn’t mean “Be Nice”. Nice guys (or gals) finish last for a reason. Niceness is short-lived and stems from a need for immediate approval (and therefore comes from insecurity). Niceness implies an alternative (usually selfish) agenda, and is a disingenuous approach to relationships. Kindness is being aware of others; their feelings, needs, and time. It means being confident in your ability to empathize, or help if need be. It means adding value to interactions and relationships, not taking away from them by being self-serving. Here are a few ways to do this.

Be Kind:

  1. To *everyone* you meet.

As far as your career is concerned, you just never know where you’ll see the person again. Every single job or freelance gig I’ve ever had (including the one in which I decorated cupcakes in a bakeshop window during a summer in high school), I got because I was kind to someone, not realizing they held a key to my future employment.

My favorite quote on this subject is one that I learned of in grad school by the great Dr. Maya Angelou: “I’ve learned that people will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel.”

Be kind to your teammates. People love working with kind people, and certainly remember them when other co-working opportunities come up.

As I’m sure you’re well aware, networking is the utmost important part of finding work. Interpret this as your chance to be kind. For one, be kind enough to get the person’s name and position right when you email them. Be kind to follow up, to demonstrate that you appreciated a new connection’s time. Be kind and do your research – understanding the person’s background will lead to a productive conversation and no wasted time. Mostly, be genuinely interested in what they’re doing, and don’t start the relationship with “I’m looking for a job at your company”.

  1. To yourself.

I learned the hard way. As the former reigning queen of caffeinated all-nighters in Bird Library and Newhouse Photo Labs, I can attest to the severely negative impacts of disrespecting your body’s needs for sleep, healthy food and exercise. I won’t preach too much on this point, for fear of sounding like a hypocrite. Part of being a productive adult is learning to manage the fine balance of your own well being, whatever combination of factors it is for you. This is probably harder than finding a job, but is crucial to your success. Science (and Arianna Huffington) suggest that getting enough sleep is the most important thing you can do to take care of your brain.

“Be kind” applies to negative self-talk, too. Yes, we all fall back on deadlines, procrastinate doing laundry, or forget to send emails. These things happen. Guilt-tripping yourself over past indiscretions or behavioral patterns that you may have inadvertently formed will not help you change them. In fact, bad-mouthing yourself in your head activates your brain’s reward center, making your biological self think that you’re having a great time beating yourself up – making the feedback loop of negativity a “fun”​ habit.

  1. Online. 

Just because you don’t see the person you are writing to does not mean that you don’t have to be kind. Write carefully thought-out emails that get right to the point, and if something is too long for an email, pick up the phone (old school, I know). Being kind online also means being kind to your image online – when you’re job-searching, recruiters will rifle through your tweets, Instagram posts, and anything really. Do yourself justice by portraying your professional self accurately.

     4. To your community. 

In the near future, you’ll be in a position to offer career guidance, or recommend a classmate for a role you see opening up at your company. Be kind. Pay it forward.

Speaking of which, current juniors and seniors should apply to my company’​s (Time Inc.) Summer Internship & Fellowship Programs. The preferred deadline is December 1, which is sooner than you think.

Graduating seniors and grad students should check out the Careers page. We’re constantly looking for new talent to join the company.

​We also post frequent updates and job alerts on InstagramLinkedIn, and Twitter, keep in touch with us there!

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Marina Zarya works at Time Inc. as the Video Producer for Branding + Culture. She did both her BS and MS at S.I. Newhouse School of Public Communications, in Advertising and Multimedia, Photography and Design, respectively. While at Syracuse University she was General Manager at WERW Real College Radio, an Engagement Fellow, Remembrance Scholar, News21 Fellow and Bayliss Scholar.

Top Tips to Make the Most of Your Internship

By Jennifer Pluta and Lucy Rodgers

Internship panel hosted by the Lubin House and Syracuse University Career Services
Internship panel hosted by the Lubin House and Syracuse University Career Services

A few weeks ago, Syracuse University in NYC hosted a program in partnership with Career Services called “Making the Most of Your Summer Internship.” Attendees heard from a fantastic panel of alumni, including:

Josh Books ’11, Nielsen Catalina Solutions
Daniel Greenberg ’13, MediaLink
Josh Levy ’10, William Morris Endeavor
Pamela Medina ’13, General Assembly
Ciara Schoenauer ’14, Fullscreen

These recent alumni from various industries and fields provided their perspectives on how to have a successful internship in New York and elsewhere.

Here is what they had to say:

  1. What we hear most from employers is that they wish interns were more proactive. They encouraged everyone to follow the advice, “be a go-getter.”
  1. If you experience any “down time,” don’t wait for direction. Instead, look for assignments and present ideas.
  1. Be sure to take advantage of your resources because the connections you make at your internship can definitely go a long way in the future.
  1. You drive yourself and that itself is motivation. Even if you make a mistake and you may get discouraged, keep going.
  1. Treat your internship seriously. Treat it like a job. For example, go beyond your assigned responsibilities and ask to sit in on meetings.
  1. Your connection with Syracuse University is huge. You can see all 50,000 alumni who call New York City home on LinkedIn. So, use those Orange connections!
  1. When you are trying to network and make a connection, a great way to end an email is to ask “if there is ever any advice that you can give me, please reach out.”
  1. Don’t ask someone you are trying to connect with to meet for coffee and then expect them to do all the talking. Be prepared and ask insightful questions.
  1. Be sure to attend any professional development opportunities or networking events within the organization where you’re interning. Local events are great, too.
  1. Get and stay connected with fellow Syracuse University student and interns in order to build your network.
  1. After the internship, make sure to maintain your connections through emails, thank you notes, or holiday cards.

Check out all of the tweets from the event for a full re-cap of the evening.

For more advice on how to make the most out of your internship or if you are still seeking a summer internship, Career Services can help – call 315-443-3616 to make an appointment today!

All The World’s A Stage…And Teachers Are Players, Too

Guest post by Jaimie Salkovitch ’05

Jaimie Salkovitch '05 dancing with one of her students.
Jaimie Salkovitch ’05 dancing with one of her students.

As a musical theater major at Syracuse University, I never imagined that my audience would one day be a room full of first graders from Brooklyn.

After I graduated with my B.F.A., I worked nights and spent my days auditioning for shows in New York City. I loved the theater world, but eventually I began to crave a more stable position. A desk job wasn’t for me – I wanted a career that would throw me curve balls every day, one where I could make a difference in people’s lives. Recalling my transformative experience volunteering at an inner-city school as a high school student, I decided that teaching would be just that career.

In 2008, I began working toward a master’s degree in special education at Fordham University, and a friend recommended that I apply to work for Success Academy, a growing charter school network that at the time had four elementary schools in Harlem. I was hired as an assistant teacher, and today, I am a special education teacher at Success Academy Crown Heights.

At first glance, the voice and acting classes I took at Syracuse University seem unrelated to the math and English lessons I teach today. But after seven years of teaching, I’ve found that not a day goes by when I fail to apply the lessons I learned as a musical theater student in my classroom.

When I started at Success Academy, I quickly realized that the traits that make an actor great – preparation, quick thinking, the ability to accept feedback – are the same qualities that make a teacher successful in the classroom.

When I started at Success Academy, I quickly realized that the traits that make an actor great – preparation, quick thinking, the ability to accept feedback – are the same qualities that make a teacher successful in the classroom. During productions at Syracuse, I had to improvise if I forgot a line, or if a prop was missing from the stage. Today, if a student is disruptive in class, I have to think on my feet to resolve the issue immediately – while making sure I don’t lose the attention of my young audience.

My acting career also taught me to accept feedback — a critical skill for any teacher. In the same way that directors guide their performers, Success Academy principals offer in-the-moment feedback to teachers, allowing them to improve rapidly. The trick is learning how to accept constructive criticism and incorporate it into your next lesson. As an actress, I had a lot of experience doing just that.

Today, my colleagues and I work together to ensure our scholars are meeting Success Academy’s high expectations. We all care deeply about our students and work to create a school environment where children arrive eager to learn every day.  To achieve this in my classroom, I might ask scholars who have a hard time grasping a book passage to act out a scene, so they can better understand a character’s motivations or a certain plot point.

As I collaborate with my Success Academy colleagues to improve student learning, I am always reminded of the family-like atmosphere I discovered at Syracuse University, where players worked together to give the best possible performance.

At Success Academy, I have found the perfect position for me — no school day looks exactly like the one before.  Each morning, I have an opportunity to impart a new lesson to an eager young audience. That’s an exciting and sometimes scary responsibility — but one that the stage prepared me for.

Founded in 2006, Success Academy is a free public charter school network with the dual mission of building world-class public schools across New York City and advancing education reform across the country. Success Academy operates 32 schools in Manhattan, Brooklyn, Queens, and the Bronx. Admission is open to all New York City families. Students are admitted by random lottery, held each April. Across the Success Academy network of K-12 schools, 76% of students are from low-income households; 8.5% are English Language Learners, and 12% are special needs students. About 94% of students are children of color. For more information about Success Academy, go to Successacademies.org

Jaimie Salkovitch is a K-2 special education teacher at Success Academy Crown Heights in Brooklyn, New York. She graduated from Syracuse University in 2005 with a B.F.A. in musical theater and received her masters degree in special education from Fordham University in 2010.

Introducing #CuseCue on Instagram!

CareerSU1 Instagram image
By Kim Brown, ’06, Assistant Director for Alumni Programs

Can you believe it’s been two years since we launched @WorkingOrange? It’s our Twitter account featuring guest alumni tweeters sharing details of their workdays and offering advice to students and fellow alumni. We’re having a lot of fun with @WorkingOrange and today, we’re excited to announce another way our students can connect with our awesome alumni – via Instagram!

We’re calling it #CuseCue. Why #CuseCue? A cue is, simply put, a signal for action. Syracuse University alumni know the actions they took towards achieving career/life success, and students can take their cues from fellow members of our Orange family. A #CuseCue might be advice on standing out in an interview, tips on paying back college loans, thoughts on what makes a rockstar intern, insight on the most fulfilling career paths, and so much more. The goal is to keep each #CuseCue to 140 characters or less. Short and sweet advice from alumni who are the best at sharing it!

STUDENTS, here’s what to do/expect:

  • Follow @CareerSU1 on Instagram
  • Every Friday, we’ll introduce you to a new SU grad and you’ll find his/her #CuseCue in the photo’s description.
  • We’ll tag his/her Instagram, so you can connect directly with the alum, if you’d like.

ALUMNI, are you willing to share a #CuseCue?

  • Follow @CareerSU1 on Instagram
  • Email Magnolia Salas (jmsalas@syr.edu), our awesome Communications and Marketing Coordinator, with the following information:
    • Your name, SU graduation year, job title and employer
    • Your Instagram handle (if you have one and wouldn’t mind us sharing it)
    • A photo you’d like us to use on our Instagram on the day we feature your #CuseCue. It can be a cool picture of your office, a headshot, a fun photo showing your Orange personality, your SU graduation picture, you name it. Be creative if you’d like!
    • And, of course, your #CuseCue. Try to keep your advice for students/fellow alumni to 140 characters or less.

That’s it! We are excited to feature our alumni in this new way and can’t wait to read the awesome advice in each #CuseCue.

GO ORANGE!

Introducing #CuseCue on Instagram!

CareerSU1 Instagram image
By Kim Brown, ’06, Assistant Director for Alumni Programs

Can you believe it’s been two years since we launched @WorkingOrange? It’s our Twitter account featuring guest alumni tweeters sharing details of their workdays and offering advice to students and fellow alumni. We’re having a lot of fun with @WorkingOrange and today, we’re excited to announce another way our students can connect with our awesome alumni – via Instagram!

We’re calling it #CuseCue. Why #CuseCue? A cue is, simply put, a signal for action. Syracuse University alumni know the actions they took towards achieving career/life success, and students can take their cues from fellow members of our Orange family. A #CuseCue might be advice on standing out in an interview, tips on paying back college loans, thoughts on what makes a rockstar intern, insight on the most fulfilling career paths, and so much more. The goal is to keep each #CuseCue to 140 characters or less. Short and sweet advice from alumni who are the best at sharing it!

STUDENTS, here’s what to do/expect:

  • Follow @CareerSU1 on Instagram
  • Every Friday, we’ll introduce you to a new SU grad and you’ll find his/her #CuseCue in the photo’s description.
  • We’ll tag his/her Instagram, so you can connect directly with the alum, if you’d like.

ALUMNI, are you willing to share a #CuseCue?

  • Follow @CareerSU1 on Instagram
  • Email Magnolia Salas (jmsalas@syr.edu), our awesome Communications and Marketing Coordinator, with the following information:
    • Your name, SU graduation year, job title and employer
    • Your Instagram handle (if you have one and wouldn’t mind us sharing it)
    • A photo you’d like us to use on our Instagram on the day we feature your #CuseCue. It can be a cool picture of your office, a headshot, a fun photo showing your Orange personality, your SU graduation picture, you name it. Be creative if you’d like!
    • And, of course, your #CuseCue. Try to keep your advice for students/fellow alumni to 140 characters or less.

That’s it! We are excited to feature our alumni in this new way and can’t wait to read the awesome advice in each #CuseCue.

GO ORANGE!

From Modern Presidency to Providing Presidential Protection

By Kim Brown, Assistant Director for Alumni Programs

As a student at Syracuse University, Aaron Rittgers always looked forward to Modern Presidency class with Professor Margaret Susan Thompson. Little did he know that ten years later, he’d have a job that would give him a front row seat to the President of the United States, the Vice President, First Ladies, and other prominent world leaders.

Major Aaron Rittgers '03 speaks to Air Force ROTC cadets.
Major Aaron Rittgers ’03 speaks to Air Force ROTC cadets.

Rittgers is a Major in the United States Air Force. As a student at Syracuse University, he was in the Air Force ROTC. He graduated from SU in 2003 and is now Commander of the 811th Security Forces Squadron at Joint Base Andrews. What does that mean? His squadron is responsible for guarding Air Force One when it is on Andrews, for protecting Air Force Two all over the world, and for protecting the President, Vice President, First Lady, and other leaders while they are on Joint Base Andrews. That means Rittgers has some insider information on President Obama’s golf game! Andrews is one of the President’s favorite place to golf.

Major Rittgers visited campus at the end of October as part of the Alumni Speaker Series. He spoke to the Modern Presidency class, to the Air Force ROTC cadets, to a group of parents on campus for Family Weekend, and more. The timing of his trip also coincided with a visit from General Martin Dempsey, who awarded Major Rittgers with his Bronze Star Medal after a yearlong tour in Iraq. Rittgers has done seven tours and spent 1100 days in the Middle East!

Since Rittgers works so closely on protecting Air Force Two, he’s had several interactions with fellow Syracuse University alum Vice President Joe Biden. When asked about those interactions, Rittgers said that Biden is one of the most down-to-earth guys you could meet – and that the two enjoy chatting about ‘CUSE. Major Rittgers also told ROTC cadets how proud he is of them for choosing to join ROTC in a post-9/11 world.

It’s always an honor to welcome Syracuse University alumni back to campus to share their career stories, and we’re especially grateful to Major Rittgers for sharing so much of his time and talent with our students!

Sophomore Surge: Part 2!

By Christina Faulkner, Career Advisor, G’16

Checklist

Last month, we mentioned some options for gaining experience and exploring your interests to help prepare you for success. This month, we’ve got a few more tips to help you discover paths and lead you toward exciting experiences and post-graduate happiness:

Reflect on Strengths, Interests, Goals, and Values

Notice when you do particularly well in a class discussion, delegate tasks to team members, or any other natural talent you might have and write it down. Think about your goals and what type of environment you’d like to work in. This will help you be prepared to answer interview questions with confidence but will also make searching and deciding easier.

Job Shadowing

If you have a few different ideas about careers you’re interested in, consider job shadowing to learn more and to imagine yourself doing the job every day. Alumni can be great people to ask, or you can “virtually job shadow” an SU alum by following @workingorange on Twitter.

Career Conversations

Connect with family friends, alumni, or anyone who does something you have interest in. Ask them about their job and what they like and dislike about. The best perspectives usually come from someone who lives it. We can help you find people to chat with!

Establish Relationships with Faculty

Faculty are a great resource! Get to know them and their background, you can learn so much outside of the classroom from them too! Additionally, they might be willing to give you a reference or recommendation, proofread your resume, or refer you to a contact.

Attend Seminars on Campus

Keep an eye out for seminars, speakers, or events on campus where you can learn and network. Approach a speaker or presenter after to ask questions and learn more about your field. There are so many to choose from!

Mentor and be Mentored

Start mentoring freshman via fullCIRCLE or other mentoring programs and you can also be mentored by staff, faculty, alumni and employers in the area. Or find a mentor in the area after you connect with someone in a career conversation. Mentors can be caring and motivating and will tell us what we can improve on if they are a good match. Ask us how to develop a mentoring relationship organically.

Already doing all this? That’s awesome! Feel free to come in and chat with us for more ideas!

Starting your first-year career!

By Shannon Andre and Tracy Tillapaugh

Discover & Explore ... First-Year Career

Welcome to Syracuse University, class of 2018! We hope your transition to college has been fun, exciting, and full of new experiences so far. We know the term “career” may sound intimidating for some and it may be the last thing on your mind since you are just starting your college experience, but it doesn’t have to be. Essentially, exploring your future career starts now!  The decisions you make, the experiences you gain, and the people you connect with during your time here will all impact the next step in your journey after college…and Career Services is here to help!

At Career Services we want to help you early in your career development, and that can start as soon as you want it to.  If you are looking to discover more about yourself and your work style, explore options when choosing your academic major, build your first resume, or start your internship search, we encourage you to come visit us. We are also hosting the following events to help you explore your first-year career:

True Colors Workshop – Tuesday, Oct. 21 – 6:30 p.m. – 8:30 p.m. – 115 Hall of Languages *RSVP in OrangeLink required; must be present for entire session

  • Why attend?  True Colors is a FUN workshop that offers insight into your personality and communication style. Learning this early on in your career can help you understand the differences between others’ ways of communicating; ultimately leading to more meaningful professional and personal relationships. Great for working in teams, building leadership skills, and identifying preferred work environments.
Major Mixer Panel & Discussion
Last year’s Major Mixer & Panel

Major Mixer & Panel Discussion – Tuesday, Oct. 28 – 5:30 p.m. – 6:30 p.m. – Career Services, 235 Schine *RSVP in OrangeLink appreciated as refreshments will be served

We hope to see you soon!

Orange Central: a phenomenal chance to meet alumni!

By Kim Brown ’06, Assistant Director for Alumni Programs

Have you heard? Orange Central is this week! Our Office of Alumni Relations welcomes everyone to celebrate their love of Orange – and with so many alumni visiting campus, it’s an incredible opportunity for students to make amazing career connections with alumni who want to help the next generation of Orange.

TwitterOC2014

So how can you take advantage of Orange Central as a student?

Check out the list of events – and sign up to attend them. Many Orange Central events are open to students. You’ll find the whole list here. Take some time to go through it. There is, without a doubt, something for everybody! You’ll even find some events, like Slice of Orange Days, Trivia Night, and Camp ‘Cuse, that are specifically for YOU!

Don’t be afraid to say hi. Most of our alumni will be checking in at the Goldstein Alumni and Faculty Center, which is right next door to Bird Library. If you’re leaving the library and see alumni mingling around GAFC, say hello! You never know who you’ll meet, and our alumni are always thrilled to have conversations with current students. They miss SU, and you offer them a chance to live vicariously. Tell them what you love about this special place!

Listen to Ruth Ross. Ruth graduated from Syracuse University and, after a very successful career in HR for top companies like Estee Lauder, Wells Fargo, and Charles Schwab, she’s now an author and speaker on the topic of employee engagement. What does that mean? It means finding a career you love, a job you feel passionate about that makes you want to go to work every day. Ruth is amazing, and she’s speaking to students and signing copies of her book at 3 p.m. on Friday, October 10. You don’t want to miss the chance to hear her advice!

RuthRossPostcard

Offer help. For many of the alumni who come back for Orange Central, it’s been years since they were on the Syracuse University campus. Whitman is new. Ernie Davis is new. Dineen Hall is new. If you see folks looking lost, offer to help them find their way to a campus building. Again, you never know who you might meet!

Aspire to win an Arents Award. The George Arents Award is Syracuse University’s highest alumni honor, presented annually to alumni who have made outstanding contributions to their chosen fields. Check out this year’s winners, who will be awarded at Orange Central 2014, and then chart your own path to becoming an Arents Award Winner!

Hope to see you at Orange Central 2014!

Sophomore Surge: Part 1!

sophomoresurge1

By Christina Faulkner, Career Advisor, G ’16

 

Sophomores! Congrats on making it through your first year! Although you might be thinking graduation is far away, you’ve seen how fast the first year went. These next three years will fly by too and you might wonder, where’d all that time go? When you get to that point and cross the stage with degree in hand or pose with family in front of the big S, you’ll feel much more at ease if you’ve got a job or grad school waiting or know you’ve set yourself up well for post-graduate success.

*Hint to non-sophomores – you can do all of these things too. 😉

Here is a quick and easy list of things you can start doing NOW to prepare yourself for that day:

Volunteer

Volunteering can be one of the best ways to add experience to your repertoire or get your foot in the door. Find organizations that have values that align with yours or do something related to your career interests. Experience does not need to be paid to be valuable to a future employer. Check out idealist.org for opportunities or the Mary Ann Shaw Center for Public and Community Service.

Internships and Co-ops

Internships are great ways to gain experience and to better understand if a career or field might be a good fit for you. Internships can be for-credit, not-for-credit, paid or unpaid. You can complete an internship during the semester or over winter or summer breaks.

Part-Time Jobs

Develop customer service, IT, management, or many other skills here on campus or in the Syracuse area. Part-time jobs show you can prioritize and manage your time well.

Club/Organization Involvement (especially leadership positions)

Check out the list of Student Orgs to see the huge selection of ways to get involved on campus. Executive board or chair positions give you leadership experience and being a member shows interests outside of schoolwork.

Professional Associations

Students often receive discounted prices for association memberships, and you can sometimes attend conferences for free if you volunteer. Professional associations give you access to important people in your field as well as learning and scholarship opportunities. Some are listed on our website.

Undergraduate Research

Ask your professors about research you might be able to help out with. This experience can be extremely helpful if you’re interested in grad school, but looks great on a resume either way.

Enjoy your sophomore year and check back in a month for part two of the sophomore surge!