Shift into gear in the New Year!

Shift into gear in the New Year!

Shift into gear in the New Year (for your career!) By Jennifer Barr It’s almost 2017 and we hope your break is going well! Many of you have been home for a few weeks now, and we hope you are catching up on sleep, eating healthy and visiting with friends and family. It’s that time of year when many students are trying to figure out practical use of their time before classes begin, and the new year always ushers in a new set of resolutions. One of the smartest ways to utilize January before classes is to spend quality time thinking about next summer, or the next (or initial!) stage of your job search. The more organized you can become over winter break, the healthier your job or internship search will be – and these benefits will be seen as you manage all of your other academics and activities. I know it may seem early, but in the world of the internship and job search, it’s never too early to get started.  Below are some of my recommendations for your Winter Break – make one or more a New Year’s resolution! 1. Create your Resume. If you have not already done so, take a stab at a first draft of your resume. You can have the CCPA review it upon your return. Check our samples for layout and structure, taking special note to the tone and use of action verbs. 2. Explore your options. Before you even want to look for an internship or job, get some ideas about different careers out there. Narrowing down your search will help keep things manageable and is an important part of...

10 Tips for Cover Letter Success, from Vault Career Insider

This blog was previously posted from Vault Career Insider. The CCPA Subscribes to the Vault so that you can have access to their blog posts in addition to their extensive career and industry information library, national recruiting network, and suite of web-based recruiting and career services tools for jobs and internships. If you want to learn more about an industry, check out the vault! Just create an account using your @haverford.edu email and get access to great advice like these cover letter tips! By Maxwell D. Rosenthal A cover letter is the first chance you get to present yourself to a potential employee in an engaging way. It allows you to go into detail about your experience, present your writing skills and hint at any research that you’ve done on the company. Basically, it’s your time to show off a little. With that in mind, you should make sure it really stands out. Below are 10 tips on how to do that: 1. Write Eloquently. Along with the requisite qualifications, organizations are always interested in hiring talented writers. Thus, even if you lack the preferred credentials, you may nonetheless impress the reader through writing a cover letter that conveys an original message in a clear, persuasive, and endearing way. And in situations where you are competing with equally-qualified candidates, an engaging and extraordinarily well-written cover letter can set you apart. 2. Customize. Before you start writing, sit back and think. Think about what would be the most persuasive and appealing way to write your cover letter. What story do you want to tell? What value proposition do you want to convey? When you are comfortable...

General Resume Tips

Rise and Shine Fords, I hope you’re having a relaxing winter break! Although you have a few weeks left, it’s time to start planning ahead. With career fairs and deadlines approaching*, a lot of you have been submitting your resumes to the CCPA for critique, which is awesome! Keep them coming! In the mean time, here are a few quick tips to follow when drafting your resume: Be aware of tense: use past for past experiences, present for present experiences Use action verbs Put a space after each position (change the font of the space to make the space smaller and save room) If you need more space, you can make the margins smaller (no smaller than 0.5) Put a space before the next section heading Right-align the date List the position, organization, location, date, and description for each entry, UNLESS the location is Haverford College, then you don’t need the location because your education section already says where Haverford is. Only use two of the three: bold, italics, underline. Use CAPS for headings. Use a legible font. Quantify when you can (i.e. number of people, hours, etc.) Under each position, list bullets in order of relevance/importance Organize by reverse chronology Use bullet points to try to answer “how” and “how much” Only list high school if relevant Don’t use “I” statements Put a period at the end of each bullet point Lastly, these are all suggestions, but in the end just make sure you’re consistent in terms of layout, font size, wording, style, etc. Check out some of our sample resumes or our Internships and Resume Tips video and blog post for...

Fords on Friday: Cover Letter and Interview Advice from David Wessel ’75

By David Wessel ’75 Director, Hutchins Center on Fiscal & Monetary Policy, Brookings Institution              Since I left The Wall Street Journal a couple of years ago to run a new center at Brookings, I’ve sifted through a lot of applications as we’ve built our small staff. Some of what I’ve seen may be obvious to many, but I can tell you it’s not obvious to every applicant. So some very practical reminders: The cover letter matters. No one ever got a job because of a great cover letter, but applicants fail the initial screening because of a bad cover letter. As we sift through dozens of applications from qualified applicants, we put them in two piles: The ones we reject and the ones we’re interested in pursuing. A cover letter with typos almost always goes in the reject pile. Do not send a cover letter without having someone – your roommate is fine – read it over. This is particularly important if English isn’t your first language. Do not misspell the name of the person or the employer. Double check that!  (We recently got one cut-and-paste letter expressing great enthusiasm for a job at the Hutchins Center at the International Monetary Fund. Oops!)  The best cover letters are tailored for the particular job, highlighting academic work, experience or skills that are relevant to the position. Be prepared with a crisp, interesting description of something you’ve done, a paper you’ve written, perhaps.  When we interview potential research assistants at Brookings, we want to see not only what they’ve learned but how well they can explain it and how deep...

Summer Internship and Resume Tips

By Karina Wiener Welcome back Fords! It’s time for the final push, you can do it! Remember to set goals, prioritize, and stay organized. If you’re feeling discouraged, just try to channel the energy this awesome kid is putting in to reach that finish line: A few weeks ago, the CCPA hosted a Summer Internship and Resume Tips workshop in which Jennifer Barr and I spoke mainly to first years and sophomores about the internship search process. Watch the workshop now, or read on for a summary! just like when you’re studying or completing assignments, it’s important to set goals, prioritize, and stay organized when searching for an internship. We suggest creating a timeline for your application process. It’s always a good idea to apply early if you can, and to apply for many opportunities. Make sure to check the application for required materials and add those to your timeline–if you need letters of recommendation from professors, contact them ASAP! As internship opportunities are currently surfacing and will be through spring, we suggest you start looking as soon as you can. Not sure where to begin? How about using the resources provided to you by the CCPA! Go to our Internships & Externships page and start with the online internship opportunities: To log into CareerConnect, use your full HC email address as your username, and your student ID number (without zeroes in front) as your password. Be sure to fill out your “Career Interests Profile” in CareerConnect to receive targeted emails from yours truly when information sessions or deadlines for organizations that you might be interested are approaching. Use ctrl+click or apple+click to select multiple interests. Other resources available to you...

Fords on Friday: The Cover Letter – It’s Not About Standing Out – It’s About Fitting In

By Andew Saunders HC ‘93 After 15 years of different positions on Wall Street, I recently started my own firm. We help alternative asset managers – e.g. hedge funds, private equity, venture capital etc –  craft, structure and implement their marketing strategies and raise capital. It is fascinating and demanding work. We’re growing which is cool, so I posted a position with the Haverford CCPA. There were a specific set of expectations and criteria, as well as a link to the website. Unfortunately, the responses I received from students were all off the mark – ranging from wildly off to mildly off. As I had no idea about “business” when I was 21, I suspect it is unfair to expect today’s 21-year-olds to be any different. But as a potential employer, I am less forgiving of my former self – who was entirely clueless on the process. And as neither of my parents were involved in the “business” world,  I knew very little of the motivations and methodologies of the “private sector.” You are likely to have many jobs over the course of your working lives. I don’t believe in careers, rather it is a mosaic comprised of different tiles that constitute different work experiences. The objective that all candidates should consider is that one should learn as much as possible with the ultimate goal to do your own thing at some point. The idea that someone wants long-term career potential is simply ridiculous in this day and age on Wall Street and finance….so you should not position yourself that way. Approach your job search like a business transaction....