Tuesday, December 10, 2013

Make the Most of Your Winter Break

Top ten things you should be doing during Winter break, instead of watching Christmas Vacation for the 26th time...

10. Conduct some career or industry-related research.  Check out the Occupational Outlook Handbook or O*NET.

9. Take a seasonal job to gain more experience.

8. Contact a professional in your field to arrange an informational interview.

7. Volunteer.

6. Update your resume with your accomplishments from Fall semester.

5. Spend a day job shadowing.

4. Write a note to your networking contacts to keep in touch.

3. Create or update your LinkedIn account.

2. Hit the mall to take advantage of the post-holiday sales, and purchase professional attire for the Spring job fairs.

1. Use the endless barrage of questions from your extended family to practice your elevator speech.

Happy Holidays!

Thursday, December 5, 2013

LinkedIn Tips & Resources!

Is your LinkedIn profile up-to-date and ready for employers to view? Are you confident that your LinkedIn profile effectively showcases your professional brand? Take time to view the Jobseeker Resources, including webinars on Job Search Fundamentals, provided by LinkedIn to ensure your profile is ready!

Tuesday, December 3, 2013

A Peak Behind the Scenes During the Interview Selection Process

A recent article shared with The Office of Career Services, highlighted some of the reasons employers decided not to push applicants further along the interview process.  Items that led to applicants resumes ending up in the trash included pictures on resumes, misspellings and grammar issues, inappropriate email addresses and being too casual during the interview process.   Many of the items that made the top 30 are those that an applicant can control.  To be best prepared for your interview, check out the many resources Career Services offers both on their website as well as in person to put yourself in a position to be successful.   Click on the link for more information http://www.ut.edu/career/jobsearchtoolbox/ .   In addition, a few of the issues that made the top 30 list can be found below.   Best of luck and happy interviewing.

Thought Catalog by Derek Marshall

16. the_no_name_man

One of my friends had to conduct telephone rounds for a position. It was technical and the person’s answering style was like he reads it from a text book. That person couldn’t get answers to any of situation based questions too. So finally my friend asked him to explain subnetting after opening Wikipedia. His answer was the first 2 lines from Wikipedia. Then my friend asked him to explain a little bit in detail. Then comes the next 2 lines from Wikipedia.

19. r7ndom

Inconsequential: The filename of the resume.
When you upload your resume to most systems, they do not rename the document – if it was called “Mama Peppers first draft.docx” that is exactly what the hiring manager will see first – because they must click on it to open it. Another common one is “resume.doc”,which means when I download 30 resumes all at once, guess what I’ve got? A directory full of “resume 1.doc” “resume 2.doc” etc. – every one of those applicants lose a bit in my book when I am forced to rename their resume so I can easily find them later.
Also, always upload in .doc/.docx or PDF. Preferably PDF since it is the only one (almost) guaranteed to come out properly on the other side – doc/docx can lose formatting, especially if you used odd fonts or other such things.

26. TinCupChallace
Said his drivers license was suspended …I watched him drive away after the interview.

27. TheDaggle
Pro tip: be courteous and professional with EVERYONE in or around the building.
My girlfriend used to be an “office specialist” who greeted and seated every applicant before their interview. Part of her duties were to evaluate applicants’ appearance and behavior and report to the manager/interviewer.

The interviews were almost a formality. Your fate was pretty much decided by the notes she jotted on your paperwork while you waited to be called in.

Tuesday, November 19, 2013

UT Students- Do Your Communication Skills Match The “Real World”

In a recent article on CNBC, the idea is challenged that today’s college students are not prepared for the level of communication skills necessary to effectively work in an internship or full-time job setting.  Are cell phones, texting and character limits altering how prepared you are for today’s work environment?   Many would say YES and I would argue they are correct!!   If you haven’t done so already, conduct your own study on the lack of face to face contact going on in your environment.   Witness countless students pulling out cell phones the minute they walk out of class or while in line waiting for mail.   How many virtual conversations do you conduct a day?  Check out the full story below and please share your thoughts, we want to hear what you think?


Experts differ on why job candidates can't communicate effectively. Bram Lowsky, an executive vice president of the workforce management arm of Manpower, blames technology. "With Gen X and Gen Y, because everything is shorthand and text, the ability to communicate effectively is challenged," he said. "You see it in the business world, whether with existing employees or job candidates looking for work."  Others say colleges aren't doing a good job. In a survey of 318 employers published earlier this year by the Association of American Colleges and Universities and conducted by Hart Research Associates, 80 percent said colleges should focus more on written and oral communication. 

Thursday, November 14, 2013

Take a day for you!

Thanksgiving Break is only a few weeks away. Thank goodness! It’s an opportunity to sit back, relax, and enjoy the lack of school related stress for about a week. But the thing is, only one day of your break is allotted to spending time with family and devouring some turkey related goodness; the rest of the break is up in the air, and for most of you that means a number of things. But for me, I’ll be taking that time to prepare for my future.

I consider myself lucky. I know where I’d like to live, what I’d like to do, and more or less how I’d like to go about doing it. I know that for most of you this might not be the case, yet. So I encourage you all to do what I’m going to do, and that is take a day and plan ahead. I like to call it a ‘future day,’which I realize is fairly cheesy, but that’s exactly what it is. For example, I know that I’d like to do graphic design for a firm, but which firm? On my future day, I’m going to research some different firms in the area, and once I have a few that I’m interested in, perhaps I’ll go for a drive and see if any of them would be willing to give me a tour. It’s important that we who are graduating next semester start doing our research now, because if we start looking in May the opportunities we seek may be out of reach.

What I’m getting at is this; now is the time to begin planning. I don’t care what year you are; freshman, senior, or otherwise. Graduation day is too late to start planning for your life. So do it now, when you’re free, and I guarantee that your future will turn out a lot more like you’d planned.

Have an excellent and safe break. If you do start to make plans, decisions, or even just start coming up with ideas, we’d love to hear about them. 

Thursday, November 7, 2013

Video Interviewing

As you begin your job or internship search, especially if you are seeking positions in another city or even country, you may be faced with a video interview rather than the traditional in person interview, especially for the initial phase of the process. With the popularity of Skype, Facetime, and other methods of video communication, chances are that you will have an occasion to conduct a video interview in the future, and the National Association of Colleges and Employers published the following hints tips for video interviews in their December 5, 2012 Spotlight:
1.      Know the technology and be comfortable with it.  Students shouldn't sign up for a video interview until they’re comfortable with the process.  They should know what they can and can’t do with the audio and video controls, what their image looks like, and where to look once the interview begins.  Being adept with the technology gives students credibility as professionals.
2.      Consider image and the interview environment.  Students should dress professionally as a video interview is an interview.  Is the background of the interview area consistent with the image the student wants to portray to recruiters?  The student should remove or silence all distractions, such as cell phone ringers, e-mail alerts, and music.
3.      Test all settings and connections beforehand.  Students should make sure the settings are optimized and all connections are working prior to the interview to avoid any issues during the interview.
4.      Be prepared for a system hiccup.  Students should have a Plan B ready in case the technology fails during a video interview.  For example, a student participating in a video interview should have his or her cell phone available in case the connection is unacceptable or drops.  Being prepared in such a manner and making a smooth transition to another method in light of unexpected problems can impress an employer.

Tuesday, November 5, 2013

Attention December Graduates!

Are you going to Graduate School? Working Full-Time? Going into the Armed Forces? Tell UT about your plans!

The Office of Career Services at The University of Tampa collects data to learn about the post-graduate accomplishments and plans of our alumni. We want to hear from you!

By completing this survey, The University of Tampa will be able to provide you with access to alumni salary and employment trend data for 2013 that may be helpful in your future career search needs. Additionally, the answers you provide help us collect valuable data to report back to various accreditation and news agencies (such as US News and World Report and other college rankings). These reports help promote the value of your degree!

Recent recognition includes:
The University of Tampa being ranked one of America's Best Colleges by Forbes (2013);
UT will be featured in The Princeton Review's "Best Colleges" guidebook (2013);
The Sykes College of Business's rank as one of the top 300 in the world by The Princeton Review (2013); and
The National Council of State Boards of Nursing naming UT's Nursing Program number 1 in the country (2010)!

Please note: All information you provide will remain confidential and will not be used to solicit donations. Responses will only be used in combination with others, in an aggregated form, without any specific identifying information, in order to report post-graduate statistics as a Class of 2013.

Thank you very much for your participation!

Tuesday, October 29, 2013

Career Fair Feedback

Feedback, or “constructive criticism” as it is sometimes called, is always a good way to check in and make sure what you’re doing works and to see how it can be improved.  I thought this would be a good time to share some employer feedback from the Professional Job Fair last week.  It seems that the requirement for professional business attire was definitely a step in the right direction; many employers commented on the improvement over past fairs, and we’ll continue to require it in the future.  Employers said that many students were well-prepared, especially in the area of research on employers.  In general students were able to articulate their interests well, and some of the “elevator speeches” were very good.  Students were engaging and proactive, and resumes were “strong” for the most part. 

Now for the “constructive” part—watch for workshops, blogs, and handouts from Career Services as we try to address these concerns. We still need to reach more students with preparation suggestions and focusing on a few key employers based on interests, rather than just “walking the floor.”  While some students were quite outgoing, some were very hesitant and had to be drawn into conversation by the employer; elevator speeches and quick introductions needed polish for the majority of students.  (See “elevator speeches” above!)

All in all employers were pleased with our students and compared us very favorably to our bigger neighbor to the north.  Keep up the good work, and practice those quick elevator speeches to introduce yourselves! A great place to do that is at our Speed Networking event on November 13th at 5:30 p.m. in the Crescent Club in the Vaughn Center! 

Thursday, October 24, 2013

Myths Busted

After the job fairs for the semester are over, we always look for other ways that students can interact with employers and can explore opportunities for employment in some less traditional ways, ways that may not “require” a particular major but are open to students of all majors and degrees.  The first of these panel discussions, which we call “Myth Busters,” will be from 4:30 to 6:00 pm. in the Vaughn Center Trustees Board Room on Tuesday, October 29th with representatives from the CIA, FBI, and MacDill Air Force Base who will discuss careers in the US Intelligence Community.

The second will be on Wednesday, November 6th from 5:00 to 6:00 p.m. in Riverside 102 when our “Myth Busters” panel will discuss what careers in volunteerism/public service look like.  UT students seem to have a passion for volunteering, and our Peace Corps representative is anxious to take advantage of this and helped us to contact other agencies with similar post-graduate opportunities to give back to those less fortunate, whether in the international realm or right here at home.  He will be joined by representatives from Americorps/VISTA, City Year, and the Public Allies Program.

So, whether you are a first or second year student just beginning to think about a career or a junior, senior, grad student, or alum in a more immediate job search, we hope you’ll join us to explore some options that you may not have considered.  

Tuesday, October 22, 2013

Professional Job Fair- TOMORROW

Professional Dress is Required!  Click here to see what you should wear.

Thursday, October 17, 2013

The Corner Office

On a typical day at work, I work out of room 106 in the Riverside building. Room 106 doesn’t have any windows and smells sort of plasticky because it’s where we store our promotional products. It’s a ton of fun. Occasionally, I’ll have the opportunity to sit in Room 110, which is bigger, doesn’t smell of plastic, and has windows, which is quite refreshing. But there was one not so typical day that I had recently during which I had an experience that I found quite exhilarating, and I’d like to share it with you. There are some quite lovely offices in the Riverside building. I’ve been in quite a few of them, for meetings and the like. These are the top-tier offices; I’m talking overlooking the river, memory foam faux-leather office chair, big L-shaped desk, a bookshelf (with books on it!) and so on. A really pleasant place to spend your work day. Many people work their entire lives and never get to call an office like that theirs. But for one day, I got to work out of one.
I won’t say whose office it was, but to say the least it was beautiful. That morning I came in, and there were interviews going on in Room 110 and 106. Some of the staff members were out of the office for the day, so my boss says to me to go ahead and take one of their offices for the day. Take your pick. Of course, I selected the biggest, roomiest, book-filled-iest office of them all and got settled. And as I continued to work through the day, I began to realize something; this was the life. I’ve worked in a lot of places; I’ve called a cubicle home before (not literally), and although I realize that such a place is ideal for a working environment, having a corner office with a view was actually something that I really, really wanted. I’d never thought about it until that very day. The whole day I felt more in tune with my work, and with the office as well, and it was really quite exciting.

What I’m trying to tell you all is this: you want a corner office. Trust me. The thing is, you have to work for it; so do it. Work hard. Then work harder. And it will be yours. And hopefully, it will be for more than just a day. And when you get there, and your office smells of rich mahogany and leather bound books, it will all be completely worth it.

Tuesday, October 15, 2013

Dress for Success: Career Fair Attire

The Professional Job Fair is only a few days away! Appropriate attire is a key ingredient to effectively navigating a career fair – after all, this is often an employer’s first impression of you! To help you prepare, we’ve compiled some tips on how to dress for success.

When attending a career fair, business professional attire is required.

Business professional attire for women:
  • Business Suit in dark colors such as black, navy, or gray. If wearing a skirt suit be sure that the skirt is knee level or slightly above – no short skirts! Also, be sure to wear a tailored blouse underneath. Avoid low-cut tops.
  • Closed-toe leather pumps with low to medium heels.
  • Jewelry – generally, a good rule-of-thumb is no more than three pieces of jewelry (e.g., earrings, watch, and ring). Jewelry should be understated and appropriate for the workplace.
  • In addition, make sure your make-up and nail polish is neutral and professional. 
Business professional attire for men:
  • Business Suit in dark colors such as black, navy, or gray. If you do not own a suit, you can pair a long-sleeve dress shirt with a pair of dress pants.Long-sleeved starched oxford cloth shirt in white or light blue.
  • Conservative necktie in color and pattern.
  • Dress shoes – make sure your shoes are polished and well-maintained (i.e., no holes!).
  • Over-the-calf dark socks. 
Additional tips to remember:

  • A friendly smile and eye contact will make you stand out!;
  • Bring a briefcase or portfolio (no backpack);
  • Well-groomed hairstyle - avoid unusual styles & colors;
  • Wear minimal cologne or perfume;
  • No visible body piercing or body art;
  • Bring breath mints; use one before greeting recruiter. Do not chew gum! 

Thursday, October 10, 2013

ONE MORE TEST- Are you Ready?

As the economy shifts to a more stable and growing job market for graduating students, companies are once again preparing for a competitive job market to identify and hire the next top talent for their organizations.  With an increased importance on analyzing data, problems solving and critical thinking, new assessments are being developed to help companies better assess future employees readiness for the “real world”.    Some of these measurements focus on the student’s institution and how prepared the university prepared graduating students, while others assess an individual’s capabilities in this area.   One assessment, the Collegiate Learning Assessment, measures the incoming academic ability of the institution the student attended.

Whether you agree with this or not, more and more companies are using this type of assessment similarly to how schools evaluate SAT scores for incoming freshman.   To best prepare for that next step, we encourage you to review the latest information available to make sure you are best suited for the economy you are about to enter.   The skills mentioned above along with communication and interpersonal skills are among the most sought after by employers regardless of the industry or job.   Get prepared now!

Tuesday, October 8, 2013

LinkedIn Profile Tips!

Is your LinkedIn profile reflective of your personal brand? Watch this video to learn the top five profile “to-do’s” from LinkedIn.

Thursday, October 3, 2013

U.S. Department of State

If any of you have ever considered working for the U. S. Department of State, here is an excellent videotaped interview with Linda Thomas-Greenfield, the Foreign Service Director-General. She gives an overview of the traits that the State Department looks for and explains the very competitive selection process.

Over 20,000 people take the written test each year, and only a few hundred per year are hired.  The written exam is only the first part of the  process; if you pass the multiple choice section, then your essays are looked at: and, if you pass that section, then you are invited to an oral exam. We are fortunate in Florida to have two of the 16 Diplomats in Residence whose function is to interact with college students who are considering a career in foreign service.

Hopefully you will have an opportunity to meet Ed Loo, who covers the southern half of the state, at one of our career events this year. If you are preparing your application materials for State Department internships or fellowships, he will review them for you and answer any questions that you might have.  If you want a career where you get to reinvent yourself every two or three years with each new assignment, the State Department just might be for you! 

Thursday, September 26, 2013

Major and Advisor Changes – October deadlines coming up!

It’s that time of year to make sure your major and advisor are up to date!  Registration for spring classes is coming soon!  Career Services and Academic Advising will be tabling in the Vaughn Center on Monday, September 30 during the lunch hour.  Please stop by our table if you have any questions about major or advisor changes.

Here is some important information for students  regarding major and advisor changes from the Academic Advising Office.  If you are not in GTW or HON, you need to have an advisor within your major. If you would like to change your advisor, come to North Walker Hall (Academic Success Center) and pick up a Change of Advisor, Major and Minor form. If there is someone specific that you would like as your faculty advisor, they can sign the form and you will automatically be reassigned to them. If you do not know who you would like as an advisor, we can select one for you.  All unsigned forms need to be submitted by October 4th; signed forms may be turned in any time during the semester.

It is also important to make sure that your major is properly declared. Students can run into registration issues if their major or minor is incorrect. For example, declared majors in the Communication department have seats saved for them in many COM classes. If you are not properly declared, you could have difficulty registering for courses in your major or minor. There is no deadline to change your major, but you should do so well before your registration time. 

Thursday, September 19, 2013

Opportunities Abound

Hello! My name is Josh Jacobs, and I’m the new Marketing Intern here at the Office of Career Services for the 2013/2014 school year! I’m a senior here at UT studying Graphic Design with a double minor in Art and Advertising, and I look forward to writing more posts like these in the future! Enjoy!

Let me tell you a little bit about my experience here at UT.

I remember my first day of college was scarier then I had ever imagined. By scary I mean really overwhelming; you’ve got classes (if you can find them), roommate drama, and absolutely no idea what constitutes as a meal or not at the Grill. There are a lot of things that you aren’t told before your first day of school, and a lot of times that can make for a crazy first year experience. But by the end of their first year of school, most people have figured out how to deal with all of those things and manage to continue on through their college career happy with simply completing their courses and living out the rest of their years here as easily as possible. If you’re reading this, I’m hoping that you are less like them, and more like me.

My freshman year, I was nominated by the Office of Student Leadership for the award of “Most Involved First Year Student.” By the end of my freshman year, I had become the Marketing Chair for Student Productions and was a heavily involved member of Extreme Elite and Honors Council, all while maintaining my Honors student status at the University. However, I did not win that prize; the girl who ended up winning had done all that while also researching and developing a program for teaching English to the underprivileged minority communities in the area (or something of that nature) and simultaneously was the president of 3 or 4 clubs...as a freshman.

I also applied for a position on the Honors Council Board and RHA in the same year, and got neither. Did these things get me down? No. Today I am the Vice President of Student Productions, an RA in Brevard Hall, and the Marketing Intern at Career Services. I’ve held two other jobs and had a life changing internship this past summer, and on top of it all, I’m still an Honors student.

What I’m trying to say is this; you and I attend a University of opportunity. The ratio of things to do versus the amount of people at this school is crazy; between clubs and greek life, on campus opportunities, and prospects in the community, there is simply too much going on. So think of it this way; in a world where the job market covets those who do, those who go the extra mile, I believe that students here at UT have an amazingly unique advantage over students at other campuses. Our advantage is that for anyone who wants  involvement or opportunity, all they have to do is reach out and grab it. Apply for something. If you don’t get that position you want, by no means are you to give up. Try again. And when employers look at your resume showing a rich and full college experience, I guarantee you that you will stand out.

The opportunities are out there. Go get them!

Tuesday, September 17, 2013

Marketing International Experience

One of my favorite events of the fall is coming up next Thursday, September 19th from 11 a.m. until 2 p.m. in the Vaughn Center Lobby—the Study Abroad Fair. Stop by and check out all the dozens of places that you can go to learn and experience another culture at the same time.  Career-wise (after all, this is the Career Services blog!), once you get back, it’s important that you begin to think about how you can translate this experience to an employer—what did you learn and what skills did you acquire that will set you apart from other candidates?

Plan to spend some time reflecting on the time spent overseas and what you learned from the experience and how you changed.  Be prepared to discuss the skills, credentials, and awareness you gained, as this can be attractive to potential employers. The skills most frequently mentioned are Communication Skills, Interpersonal Skills, Organizational Skills, and Intrapersonal Skills.

The Office of Career Services has prepared a handout on Marketing Your International Experience which will help you to translate your study abroad experience onto your resume and into your interviews.  It will be featured on our website soon (www.ut.edu/career), but in the meantime, feel free to stop in and pick one up!

Veel geluk!    Bonne chance!    Boa sorte!    Noroc! 
Guid Luck!    Buona fortuna!
祝你好運 (zhù nǐ háoyùn)     Viel Glück!


Thursday, September 12, 2013

Strengths and Your Career

Have you heard people on campus lately talking about their Strengths?  All incoming first year students were given the Strengths Finder in the Gateways classes this year.  After attending the initial workshop on Strengths and what that means to you, there are several follow up workshops to find out more about them.  At last night’s workshop, we focused on Strengths and Your Career.  If you are interested in learning more about how you can utilize your Strengths in searching for a career, check out this article in the Gallup Business Journal on “Building a Career on Your Strengths.”  

Thursday, September 5, 2013

Career Services Resource Spotlight: Practice Your Interviewing Skills

Are your interview skills well developed?  Do you have experience interviewing? Are you confident during interviews?  If you answered “no” to any of these questions, the Office of Career Services encourages you to practice your interviewing skills using our online mock interviewing resource – Optimal Job Search’s Interview Module!

Interview Prep helps prepare you for even the toughest of interviews with real life, multi-media interview scenarios that were developed by seasoned employment professionals. This resource allows you to video tape a mock interview while receiving advice from an interview coach for those hard to answer questions. Once you have recorded the final version of your mock interview, make an appointment with the Office of Career Services to have your mock interview critiqued. Appointments can be requested online

To begin, all you need is access to a computer with a Webcam and microphone. If you do not have access to a webcam, contact the Office of Career Services to reserve one of our computers (advance reservation is required). Additionally, the Office of Career Services has a limited number of webcams available for check-out for a 24-hour period.

The online Optimal Job Search resource is available for UT students and alumni and can be found under the Job Search Toolbox.  A video tutorial on how to effectively use the Optimal Interview Module is available here.

Follow these steps to get started:

Select the Create New Interview option (or choose from an existing interview type), name it, and then select Start Interview. Once you have started a new interview with a name of your choosing, select an interview type from the list of options. If you select custom interview, you will build your own interview by selecting the types of interview questions you will be asked.

Under format, select the video option. You are now ready to begin the mock interview. You will notice that there is an Interviewer, as well as, a Coach. It is important that you listen to the built-in coaching advice to learn how to best answer the interview questions.
Once you have the finalized interview recorded, you can request an appointment with Career Services. Once you receive confirmation of your appointment with Career Services, send the link to your interview by using the share feature.

I hope you find this online resource helpful!

Wednesday, August 7, 2013

LinkedIn Guide for Interns

For those of you who have had summer internships and are looking for ways to maximize the connections that you have built over the summer, Lindsey Pollack, who is an official Ambassador for LinkedIn, has put together “The Ultimate Guide to LinkedIn for Interns,” available on LinkedIn.   Whether you are finishing up a summer internship or are thinking about preparing for a future internship, the information is invaluable.  And if you are looking for a full time professional job after graduation, check out the tips for following companies and making connections using LinkedIn!  

Thursday, August 1, 2013

Time to Update Your Resume

As the summer nears an end, your thoughts wander to preparing for the Fall semester.  One thing that students should be doing at the end of each semester is a resume update.  Having a current resume is one of the easiest ways to ensure that you are always ready for any opportunity that may come along.  Here are a few tips to a timely resume:

1.  Have a master resume- This document can be multiple pages long and a record of everything you have accomplished.  Use the relevant parts of your master resume to create targeted resumes for jobs and internships.

2.  Update right away- Joining a new group?  Just completed a great summer internship?  Don't wait to add these skills and accomplishments to your resume.  It only takes a few minutes to jot down your most recent accomplishments, while they are fresh in your mind.

3.  Complete a semester end review- Set aside 15 minutes at the end of each semester to give your resume the once over.  Make sure that everything is up to date and accurate.  Trade with a friend for a quick proofreading session.  Of course, you can always bring your resume to Career Services walk-in hours for a review as well.

4.  Think of your resume as a living document- Your resume is never done!  Even after you land your dream job, an up to date resume is a must.  

Spending just a few minutes each semester can ensure your resume is always employer ready!

Wednesday, July 10, 2013

Virtual Internship Opportunities with the U.S. Department of State – Deadline is July 20th!

The U.S. Department of State has over 275 virtual intern projects available for the upcoming academic year (September 2013 through April 2014). These “eInternships” are a great way to gain experience in a variety of fields without having to relocate for the duration of the internship!  According to the Virtual Student Foreign Service (VSFS) program, eIntern duties and responsibilities will vary depending on the needs of the federal agency office or U.S. diplomatic post overseas and the types of VSFS projects identified. VSFS projects may involve research, contributing to reports on issues such as human rights, economics, or the environment. Projects may also be more technology oriented such as working on web pages or helping produce electronic journals. Students are expected to dedicate an average of 10 hours per week on VSFS eInternship projects.

The application deadline is July 20, 2013. A resume, unofficial or official transcript or proof of enrollment, and statement of interest will be required as part of the application package. To learn more, visit: http://www.state.gov/vsfs/

Wednesday, July 3, 2013

Virtual Internships

In the era of social media, Skype, and GoToMeeting, many professionals are able to accomplish multiple tasks without ever leaving the comfort of their homes or offices.  Improving technology has made working remotely and the virtual office a trend of resource conservation and convenience.  But do these benefits extend beyond the skilled worker to a student?  Can a virtual internship develop the skills and provide the same quality of experience as a traditional internship?

According to NACE’s 2012 Internship & Co-op Survey, 8.6 percent of employers anticipate hiring virtual interns in 2012.  It is understandable why the virtual internship is appealing.  It allows an employer to tap into a much larger candidate pool.  Internship recruiting is no longer limited by geographic location, but instead students from literally anywhere could complete an internship without leaving their residence hall room.  The need for office space and time spent directly supervising an intern would also diminish.  The virtual internship can also benefit the intern by allowing projects to be completed when it is convenient, thus eliminating class schedule conflicts.  In addition, most students are quite comfortable utilizing the technology needed to communication at a distance, so this experience taps into their established skill set.

Our current policy does not allow remote or virtual internships to be completed for academic credit.  While there are obvious benefits to both the employer and the intern, we feel that a virtual internship can make it difficult for a student to build those much needed professional and interpersonal communication skills which are core competencies of our internship curriculum.  And perhaps some employers agree, as the number of virtual internships is down 3.9 percent from 2011.

What do you think?  Are virtual internships the wave of the future, or just a passing fad?

Originally published on LinkedIn.

Wednesday, June 26, 2013

Summer is Halfway Over!

For those of you who are returning to UT in the fall, this week marks just about the halfway point of the summer.  As you look at what remains of your summer break, think back to elementary school and that essay you had to write about “what I did on my summer vacation.”  What have you done career-wise this summer?  

Hopefully you've had a summer job or internship; if not, it’s not too late to land a job or take the opportunity to volunteer.  It will fill up some space on your resume and, better yet, give you some related experience or at least some transferable skills. Have you taken the opportunity to do an informational interview with someone whose job looks like something you would like to do? Most people love to talk about themselves and their jobs, so take a chance and ask some questions!  If you’re wondering what to ask, we have some informational interview questions on our website to get you started. 

Enjoy the rest of the summer and we look forward to hearing all about what you did, career-wise, on your summer vacation.

Wednesday, June 12, 2013

Exploring Careers

I have spent some time this summer checking out some great resources for career exploration.  One of my favorite sites is O*NET OnLine.  This government website has so much useful information.  If you want to explore a career you have always dreamed about, click on the tab for My Next Move.  On this site you can search careers, browse careers by industry and take the O*Net Interest Profiler.  This tool can help you find out what your interests are and how they relate to the world of work.  Once you complete the questions and get your results, you can then click on any of the six interests (RIASEC) to see what type of careers might be rewarding to you.  You then select what type of training you would need (Bachelor’s degree or higher) and then see the “best fit” jobs for your interests and preparation level.  For example, if “social” was your top interest and you clicked on the “considerable preparation” job zone, your best fit careers might be a library technician or an elementary school teacher.  Depending on the type of answers you give, you might get different results. 

This is just one of many websites that we have listed on our Career & Major Exploration page.   Spend some time thinking about your career path – and then develop a plan to get there.

Have a great summer!

Wednesday, June 5, 2013

LinkedIn Webinars

Are you new to LinkedIn? Are you fully utilizing LinkedIn in your job or internship search? Find out more about the newest features and strategies for taking advantage of all that LinkedIn has to offer by participating in FREE webinars!

These FREE LinkedIn Learning Webinars can be found within the LinkedIn Help Center (located under the “More” section of the navigation buttons at the top of your LinkedIn page).  Just type in “Learning Webinars” in the search feature of the Help Center.

Select the webinar that best suits your needs!

If you are new to LinkedIn, I recommend starting with the webinar “LinkedIn 101: The Basics of LinkedIn”. If you are currently in a job or internship search and want to ensure that you are leveraging all of the LinkedIn features participate in “Job Seekers: Tips for Using Your LinkedIn Account to Help You Land Your Next Great Opportunity”.

Wednesday, May 29, 2013

Employer Perceptions on Higher Education and Careers

The Chronicle of Higher Education and American Public Media’s Marketplace
conducted a survey of employers who hire recent college graduates in order to 
understand employer perceptions of the role of colleges and universities in career 
preparation.  Some of the most surprising findings of the report titled “The Role of Higher Education in Career Development: Employer Perceptions” include the following:

• 78% of employers will consider any major. Only 19% of employers look for specific majors and do not consider candidates without them.
• Work experience (particularly internships and other work during school) is more important to employers than GPA and  major.
• An internship is the single most important credential for recent college graduates to have on their resume.
• Most interviewers value extracurricular activities, like professional clubs, athletics and service, more than GPA.

Wednesday, May 22, 2013

Summer Plan

Although summer is often the time for rest and relaxation and a slower pace than during the academic year, it’s still the perfect time to get some major-related work experience or, at the least, work experience that will give you some transferable skills to include on your resume.  If you are staying in Tampa for the summer and are still looking for a job, I just checked HIRE-UT and, using the one-click search for “Part Time Jobs Posted by my Career Center,” I found 105 part time jobs in addition to the 60 internships that are currently listed.  If you are looking elsewhere or would like to cast a wider net, try these popular search engines for part time jobs:  

Most of these also list entry-level jobs, and the search can be refined by industry and location. The outlook for summer jobs is improved over the past few years, but the most sought-after jobs are still highly competitive, so fine tune your resume, polish up your interview skills, and get that job!

Monday, May 20, 2013

Are you ready for your first job?

Students often share mixed feelings about leaving The University of Tampa following graduation.  Many are excited to get out on their own and take on the world while others are not quite sure what to expect.   A recent article on CBSnews.com refers to an apparent gap revealing itself with recent grads.   Within the article it discusses how many feel that the company will provide a “hands on approach” to training in your first year when in fact, fewer than half report ever getting this.  In order to be sure you are best prepared for both the interview and your first year on the job, check out these resources.       

The Office of Career Services is open all summer so don’t hesitate to reach out if you need guidance or support at 813.253.6236 or hireut@ut.edu.   

Tuesday, May 7, 2013

A Bitter Sweet Goodbye

I am so incredibly thankful to have worked with the Office of Career Services this year, and what an incredible journey it has been. These blog posts have been pretty entertaining for me and I hope it has helped some of you prep for the real world! If you all have any other questions, concerns, or comments, please do not hesitate to message me personally.  I am excited to pass my position on to Josh Jacobs who I know will do an amazing job next year. I will still be writing some posts but as I take on a new position as Student Government President.

In this last blog post, I truly want to thank the entire Office of Career Services for making this office feel like home. Cliché? Yes. True? Unbelievably so. These individuals have been beyond supportive and motivating, and I highly encourage you all to get involved in the office as early as you can. Whether it’s attending an event, workshop, or walk-in hours, be sure to utilize the resources offered.

I traveled around the country recruiting for admissions this past semester, and my favorite part of the presentation I gave was when I was able to ramble on about how much I love the Office of Career Services. This is a summary of what I said:

College is an investment, and it’s expensive. That’s an understatement. It’s extremely expensive. Yes, you go to college to receive a degree and have some incredible experiences, but when it comes down to it- it’s all about where that degree and experience will take you. The Office of Career Services is there to set students up for life after UT. From scheduling workshops and career fairs, to bringing employers in to critique resumes and conduct on-campus interviews, to helping individuals choose a major and obtain experience in their field, the Office of Career Services is there, making sure you get the absolute most out of your time here at UT.

I love this office and hope you all take time out of your schedule to make some of our resources a priority! Good luck with all your future endeavors and stay classy!

Thursday, May 2, 2013

Arrested? Your Potential Employer Thinks You’re Guilty!- Guest Post by Attorney Ryan Rooth

Finding a job in a tough economy with a criminal arrest record is difficult and frustrating. It is frustrating because you may interview well or are offered a job, only to have the offer rescinded upon the completion of a background check showing your previous arrest! 

An arrest comes in two different forms:
  1.  You are booked into the county jail.
  2.  You are issued a Notice to Appear by the police in lieu of visiting the county jail.
Both situations are legally an arrest and the information provided below applies to both situations.  

What do you do if you have an arrest record? This is a trick question because I used the words “arrest record” not “criminal conviction” for a very important reason. An arrest shows up on background checks even if your charges were dropped or dismissed. This is important to know because people often think that because a criminal charge was dropped or they received a “withhold of the adjudication” that they don’t have a criminal record. In legal terms, this is true but in the non-legal world, an arrest means guilty! 

Why does an arrest mean guilty in the workplace? Most employers lack the training and knowledge needed to distinguish between an arrest and a criminal conviction. Employers take the background check results at face value and move on without researching or understanding what the results show or mean. If you entered a diversion program (Misdemeanor Intervention Program ‘MIP’ or Pretrial Intervention Program ‘PTI’) this information applies heavily to you. 

What do you do if a background check shows you were arrested? The criminal justice system allows you to expunge one arrest record in your lifetime.  Expunging is the legal process of erasing your arrest record. There is an additional process known as Sealing (hiding) but we are not covering that issue at this time (although the process is similar).

The expungement process erases your criminal arrest record from the public records. Public records include: Clerk of the Circuit Court, investigating police agency, county jail, probation department and Florida Department of Law Enforcement. This process is not perfect by any means, but it helps start the process of repairing your image with an Order to Expunge. The Order to Expunge does not legally extend to private companies, such as mugshots.com or backgroundchecks.com, but many of these companies are more willing to remove an arrest record if you provide a court order showing it was erased. 

As a criminal defense attorney, I have offered the above information to help you succeed.  If you need help expunging your record, contact an attorney to help you. As students, I know you are concerned that you can’t afford to hire an attorney to expunge your record.  Let me assure you that with a little effort and some patience, you can complete an expungement on your own without the use of an attorney. It often takes a bit longer, but it can be done! 

Ryan Rooth is a criminal defense attorney with Rooth Law Group in the Tampa Bay area with offices in St. Petersburg and Tampa. Gain more information about expungements on their website.