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June 2014 Articles:

Alumni Advantage is a newsletter for current students written by members of the National Professional Advisory Board and their colleagues. It provides insider advice, insight and inspiration so that when our graduates enter the real world, they are ready to rock it.

Landing the Job: Equal Parts Tenacity and Intuition
by Sydney Holmes, photo courtesy Sydney Holmes

Never stop networking:

Being "on" all the time has its advantages and disadvantages. People say it's all about who you know, and it is, but there is something to be said for hard work and tenacity. You're never going to meet the people you need to meet if you're not working hard. It may sound obnoxious, but no one ever got anywhere by not asking. Never feel like you're above a certain contact, because chances are, that contact knows somebody who knows somebody who has a position for you. Even if it's an obscure connection, it doesn't hurt to try to use it. I've had a few Red Raiders contact me, and I'm always willing to help. More often than not, people will respond, even if there is no availability at the moment. The worst that can happen is an unanswered email. What's one more unread resume?

Sydney Holmes

Sydney Holmes

Keep things in perspective:

It can be hard to go from the top of the heap to the bottom of the pile again, but be willing to learn. The idea that someone is going to graduate and be the CEO of a company at 22 is long gone. Find someone older and more experienced than you are who you trust, and pick their brain daily. If they're a good mentor, they'll be willing to walk you through the difficult business scenarios you will undoubtedly face. If you want to hold out for the dream job, you're going to be waiting a long time. Chances are the position you want doesn't exist. Take the job you feel good about and create a niche for yourself within it. Your job will evolve. Learn, learn, learn, and that CEO job will be so much sweeter.

Keep the faith:

If you have a clear vision of where you want to be, don't let a few road bumps discourage you. There will be people who will try to instill doubt in you, and maybe not intentionally, but chances are any and all of the doubts they're planting are things you've already thought of and chose to ignore. If you are fully confident in yourself and your ability, run with it. Who should be allowed to tell you any different?

Make business cards:

No, really. Even if you don't have a job, make business cards--just a personal card with your name, phone number and email. I always think it's helpful to have your picture on your card. People won't remember you by your name, especially if you just told them you're interning for what's-his-name at so-and-so company. Put your face on your card. It jogs people's memories too, so when they look at it they say "Oh, I remember this one!"

Age ain't nothin' but a number:

People are going to treat your age as a novelty initially. Just remember, whether you're 22 or 62, you were hired for a reason. Continue to do a great job and your age will become obscure.

Sydney graduated with a degree in Broadcast Journalism in 2013. She moved to New York City two weeks after graduation to intern with CBS Radio. She currently works as the Public Relations Coordinator for TOWN Residential, a luxury real estate firm in Manhattan.

Sydney received a Mark of Excellence Award from the Society of Professional Journalists for a piece she wrote while at her post as Entertainment Director for The Hub@TTU. She is an active blogger and pursues standup comedy in New York City.