Sunday, May 2, 2010

Worth It.

This was a photo I uploaded to Facebook while we were waiting to go on stage.

Being backstage was pretty cool. I was lined up with people I've never seen before but we all got along immediately. The mix of nerves, excitement and accomplishment gave everyone this special smile. People from the New York, New Jersey and Online campuses with these big goofy smiles waiting for the line to move.

I've been waiting for the walk since the end of my last quarter, which was last September. Like I said on my Facebook, "after 3 years of non-stop all nighters, caffiene binges and insomnia induced wrinkles," we finally made it to commencement.

I felt so great to see so many old friends. Life started after that last quarter. Big new jobs and big new lives. It was nice to get away from that and come back to college life. We met up and hugged and high fived and posed for enough cell phone pictures to blow up Facebook, Twitter and Tumblr.

College wasn't just about papers and exams. College really is about what you get out of it. You get a sense of responsibility what you would get anywhere else. You learn that you are accountable for everything you do, good and bad. The knowledge gained at Berkeley definitely gives a competive edge against other schools. The business orientation of the school is something that will set you a cut above the rest for any young guns in the business world. Because we're learning for the professors from walk the walk and talk the talk, we're taught how things are in the real world.

Thanks to Berkeley, I feel that I'm prepared to shoot up the ranks in the professional world with my head held high in confidence.

Mr. Dario Cortes mentioned in his speech that most of the 2010 graduating class will be the first in the family to graduate from college. After commencement, my parents hugged me tight and told me how proud they were. I'm the first to graduate on my dad's side. I'm the first female on my mom's side.

So, for my last post, I'd like to say thanks to everyone who read and commented. I had a blast sharing my college experience with you guys.

If the MBA rumors are true, expect me back soon. Maybe I'll have a Berkeley MBA blog. You never know what the future holds.

Sunday, April 4, 2010

Summer Interning

The weather is getting nice. Spring is here! With Spring comes spring quarter. Internship time is looming. Those raining April days will be dedicated to getting portfolios and resumes ready for some potential employment/intern spots. If I were you, I'd be favoriting some listings on Career Zone for the summer.

With Berkeley College's Career Zone website, you're pretty much guaranteed to find a couple of internships in line with your field of study. Along with the advisors and career counselors, you're set for some great "real world" experience. (If you take advantage of all that's offered at Berkeley, finding an internship will be no sweat.)

If you choose to look for an internship outside of what's listed on CareerZone....BEWARE. The New York Times just published an article on how some unpaid internships will be made illegal.


I know that there are some horror stories of coffee-fetching, dog-walking, errand-running and even babysitting. (Read some here at It's funny...if it doesn't happen to you.

Interning is meant to be real world training for your field of study. An ideal internship would be using your new knowledge in in critical thinking situations. You're supposed to have a supervisor guiding you though it all.

If you feel that you're just free labor, talk to your counselor and see if the internship is legit.

Also, here's the link to the New York Times article.

After I read it, I just had to tell you guys to keep your eyes and ears open.

Interning is supposed to get your ready and confident about post college employment in your choice of study. And c'mon, you don't wanna be free labor. Free interning isn't bad if you're learning something. But free interning is horrible if you're babysitting and making daily trips to Starbucks for bigwigs.

So, good luck and keep your eyes and ears open for some good, legit internships. There's tons out there. You just gotta look and utilize all resources ( like Berkeley's career services. )

Sunday, March 28, 2010

Resume Rundown: Selling Yourself

Graduation is coming up! Unless you took the accelerated 3-year plan in '06 with me, that means that you're pretty close to finishing up your last quarter at Berkeley College. Suddenly, you're going to be flung into the big, bad job market.

If you're done cleaning up the online image, step 2 is obvious. Resume Revision!

At this point, you might have taken Placement Seminar already. This class is pretty much Berkeley's secret weapon. Its a course that tons and tons of job-seekers WISH they could take. You are trained to give a killer interview AND your resume is perfected. You get to build up your portfolio and learn how to exude professionalism. By the end of this course, you usually come out with your eye on the prize, ready to go after any job position.

If you have gotten to this class yet, or if you already finished the course and need some help retooling the ol' resume, we all have access to Berkeley's Career Services department. Whether you're still a student or an alumni, you can help over to get some help on shaping up your resume to stand above the rest!

Lately, a few friends have asked me to give a quick glance over their resumes. Now, I am not a pro at this. I can't say that I know all about resumes. What I can say is that I learned enough from my visits to my Career Counselors to know the standard to resumes. Also, I got to look at a few resumes when I was assisting in picking interns. There were some things I noticed that killed chances and others that had the automatic thumbs up. For example:

Resume Killers include:
  • Fancy font for your name (keep that for save the dates and birthday invitations.)
  • Try and keep it to one page. This can be easy if you design your resume for the specific job you're applying for.
  • Take out info about high school and G.E.D.'s. This is college. All that stuff is trumped by what you've been doing in college.
Resume Stand-outs include:
  • Prevalence to the position. Describe how you'll be the perfect fit for the job. If you can, add bits of school projects to your cover letter that correlate to the field you're apply to.
  • Great layout. Make sure you're resume is pretty. Nice lines, good spacing. These count oddly enough. If the page looks jumbled with tight lettering and too many formats, chances are it won't get a second look.
  • Good paper. Believe it or not, but there is paper out there specifically for resumes. It's ten bucks in Staples. Invest in it. A thicker piece of almost-cardstock resume paper will stand out and look 100% more professional than your standard 8 1/2 x 11in white resume. This isn't completely necessary, but it doesn't hurt to have that extra little touch.

Here are some helpful links:

The best tip I can give anyone in any college is to go to your advisor/career counselor. This is the kind of stuff their pro's at.

Good luck!

Friday, February 19, 2010

April 30th! Berkeley College Graduation!

I know I'm a little late but I just send a bunch of emails and voicemails reminding everyone and their mom about GRADUATION DAY!

That's right. G-R-A-D-U-A-T-I-O-N! I started creating my playlist and figuring out what shoes to get that'll match the gown. *wink*

I have a few co-workers graduating with me (I'm talkin to you, Juan Torres!). I promised I would give him a shout-out.

In a seriousness, this is one of those life defining moments. Walking up to that stage and having a whole stadium cheer for 4 years of hard work...I can just imagine the feeling!

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Clean Up Your Name

"Vanessa waking up in the morning feelin like P.Diddy."

Google your name..your full name. What do you find?
This is one of the first things you should do when starting off your job hunt. Not only will it ensure a squeeky clean "googlability"but, it'll remind you to delete some old accounts you may have forgetted about.

For example, I had a podcast back in high school. I completely forgot about it. I also had a webcam chat account. Totally forgot. It took me about an hour and a half to remember all the passwords and delete the accounts.

Think about this. Do you really want a potential employer to see your status updates? Even it you publicly announce your vices, its still a bad thing to update between the hours of 9a-5p. Then your boss-to-be may think you're always online. Not needed.

Instead of "harvesting your crops" on Farmville or answering Tweets or "Tumbl-ing", amp up your LinkedIn! Google my name and my LinkedIn pops up on the very first page.

This is totally necessary if you're going for a job that's up with the internet times. If the company has different online platforms (website, twitter,myspace, etc.), this is a MUST.

I'm not suggesting you call up your internet provider and cut yourself off from the world. Just keep it clean, kiddos.

And if you absolutely cannot let go of the crazy status updates and photos from last weekend's parties,....use your nickname!

Article to Check Out:

Monday, February 15, 2010

The Scary Plunge into Job Hunting

Happy February, everyone. After that epic storm we had last week, Verizon finally came around to fixing my internet access. I got my wireless back! (High Five!) Now, I can share my ~job hunt~ experience with everyone!

In the beginning of the year, I made it a point to excel in my career. I will admit that I did get comfortable once I picked up my diploma. I fell into the "eh..I'm done" sandtrap a lot of post-grads fall into. I had my degree and my job. But, as my generation is so known for, I wanted more! I felt that I had done everything that I could do at my former job. It was a great job that gave me excellent skills and experience. I just felt it was time for me to test out the waters in other industries.

I interned and worked in Entertainment for almost a year. It was fantastic. I got to meet and even assist in managing musical artists. I even got to travel around the Caribbean. All that was great. The only tough part were the hours. Sunrise to sunset, pretty much. Since I'm planning on going to Graduate School, I felt that I HAD to find something a little more 9-5 without so much traveling.

Hence, I gave in my two weeks in mid-January.

Two weeks later, I started at my new job. Steady hours, good pay, and coverage! The best thing is that its a 5 minute bus ride from my house. How's that for hitting the jackpot!

I can contribute my easy find to a couple of factors. I'll be dedicating the next couple of posts to some key components to job hunt success. I'm not saying I'm a pro but I did take the points given at Berkeley and applied them to real life.

It'll be a Wednesday thing. Tomorrow, except the first post: Online Clean-Up. All about making your google-ability squeaky clean.

Wednesday, January 6, 2010

2010 Resolutions and Links

I know everyone has been saying the same thing all week, but honestly, can you believe its 2010? Besides the letdown that I still don't have a hover-car parked outside, the future is looking awesome.

There's so much to look forward to! Of course, the top thing on my list is the Berkeley College Graduation Ceremony! Sure, I have my degree hanging up on my wall in a fancy frame. I'm just antsy for the tassle and Cum Laude sash.

Along with the new year comes the resolutions. I've set a few for myself that I'm sure everyone has made. I thought I would share my resolutions and websites to help everyone (students and alumni) to make 2010 the best year yet.

  1. Sleep more. (I know that one sounds lazy, but I'm not cut out for all-nighters anymore. Coffee and energy drinks at 2am mean nothing when you're groggy and half-awake in the morning. This link takes you to an article about how lack of sleep affects productivity at work. In this cutthroat job market, the last thing you need is your boss to catch you dozing off at your desk.)

  2. Brown bag. (I was looking through my debit statement and was shocked when I calculated how much I spent on eating out for lunch. Then, I got sick on soups and sandwiches every day. I would complain about this to everyone. That is probably why I got a nice thermos and some storage containers for Christmas. (Not kidding.) Here's a quote for an article in the LA Times that may make you think twice about that morning run to D&D's or Starbucks.
    "Cutting back to even three days a week saves you about $8 (assuming you're
    buying a latte -- or a coffee and a doughnut). That's about $35 a month, or
    about $400 a year." -LA Times

  3. Pinch pennies. (I'll admit that I went nuts with the Christmas presents this year. The money I saved from selling off my text books went to gifts. Now, I gotta cut out the heavy spending and start saving. I'm still a freelancer to taxes are going to kick my butt this year. Also, I'd like to fully pay off my credit card this year. So, I want to share with you a website that it PERFECT for these kinds of goals. The site is Besides the fun and quirky language, it definitely helps students learn how to manage money in the big bad world.)
  4. Have a laugh. (All the sleep deprevation and soup and salad combos put a damper on my mood in 2009. I couldn't have fun because I wouldn't let things go. I had a case of the Mondays everyday. This year, I fully intend on having a more positive attitude. It's like Oprah's Secret mentality. Think positive and positive things happen. Have a laugh. Hug someone. Sing something fun. There's tons of sites for a little LOL. Buzzfeed, Youtube, Tumblr,...)
  5. KIT. (Keeping in Touch. Now that is something I definitely have to work on. A Facebook wall post doesn't count. Neither does a Tweet. I fully intend on calling (yes, calling and not texting) my friends/family at least once a week. In '09, I called clients more than I called my best friends. This year, I plan on keeping in touch with the world.)

There's more but I read somewhere that you have to keep to-do listed under 7 bullets, otherwise, it overwhelms the brain.

I'm sure everyone has their own resolutions for themselves. If you have any nifty ones, please share! As part of the KIT resolution, I will be to respond to emails and comments much quicker.

Until next time, Happy New Year!

Site Cites: