Archive for April, 2018

Why Business Programs Are Good Option for Many Students

April 24th, 2018

BY KARI OAKLEY

 Going to college is a practical necessity today for anyone that would like to earn professional success. When you are in college, one of the biggest choices that you will have to make is choosing your major and degree path. One great option to consider pursuing is a degree in business. There are several reasons in particular why you should consider a degree in business.

Develop Communication Skills

One reason why you should pursue a degree in business is that you will get to develop better communication skills. Having good communication skills is extremely valuable in any professional situation. When you are earning your degree, you will spend a lot of time learning how to verbally express your thoughts in a professional manner and in a way that will receive respect from your peers. You will also spend time working on public speaking projects to ensure you are able to be poised in any environment in which you need to speak in front of others.

Learn to Work in Groups

Over the past few decades, more and more jobs have started focusing on having a collaborative work environment in which people work in teams on projects together. This trend is bound to continue in the future due to the benefits it provides to an organization. Today, many business school programs in colleges across the country focus on working together in small groups and teams to complete school projects. This will give you experience that will be necessary when working in a professional environment.

Good Job Prospects

One of the main reasons why people go to college today is to get a job that will provide them with a good career path and strong compensation. One of the best educational paths that someone should pursue when looking to earn a higher income is a degree in business. There are many different great jobs in finance, banking, insurance, and a variety of other business fields that will provide a great entry level salary and plenty of career potential for recent business graduates.

Customer Relationship Management

When you are earning your degree in business you will also learn how to build and maintain relationships with customers. Part of the degree path will include teaching you how to build solid professional relationships with customers. Since having good and reliable customers is a requirement for any business to be successful, this is a very transferable skill that can help you in any business. For example, with enhanced retail customer relationship management skills you will be able to ensure you receive a lot of repeat customers, which will be great for your business.

Accounting and Finance

Even if you do not want to pursue a career in accounting and finance, learning the basics of these functions is extremely important and could benefit you a number of different ways. Accounting and finance are very important professional rules that are also skills that all people should understand and develop for their personal lives. Those that earn a business degree will learn the basics of accounting and finance, which could help them better manage their personal finances and personal investments in the future.

Management Skills

No matter what type of career or job you choose to pursue in the future, being a good manager and leader will always help you to develop professional success and do well in the future. When you earn a degree in business, part of your education will focus on business management. This will include teaching you the core philosophy and strategies that go into managing groups of people and getting them to work hard for the good of the organization.

In conclusion, choosing the right degree is very important for anyone that is in college. One great degree path to consider is a degree in business. This educational path will provide you with a variety of different educational focuses that will benefit you for your entire career.

Byline:

Kari Oakley is a fitness trainer from Kenosha Wisconsin. She now lives in downtown Chicago, and loves to get out. She is a big fan of anything adventure, and loves getting a workout in the outdoors.

 

6 Ways to Keep Up with College Deadlines

April 23rd, 2018

BY ALLIE SHAW

We all know that familiar feeling of dread: a rapidly approaching deadline can be extremely panic-inducing, especially when you’ve left a big assignment to the last minute. Procrastination is an issue that almost everyone has to conquer. Luckily, you have lots of ways to circumvent your tendency to push off a deadline.

The Procrastination Problem

Missing a deadline is often linked to procrastination, and the roots of procrastination can show you how to avoid the cycle of delaying your work on a project. Procrastination can stem from depression, anxiety, and a lack of self-compassion. In other words, our fear of failure drives us to try to feel better temporarily by seeking a distraction or working on another task. Missing a deadline can reinforce these anxieties by introducing shame and guilt, making it even harder to meet your next one.

Being kind to yourself and avoiding feelings of blame or self-doubt is a good first step for any procrastinator, but breaking the chain of missed deadlines requires a conscious and organized effort to work smarter. Follow these six steps on your next big project, and you can skip the panic and stress of a missed deadline completely.

 

  1. Deadlines Are Our Friends

If your deadline is stressing you out, it may help to reframe it as a tool to finish your work and achieve your goals. Deadlines give us the opportunity to plan our work schedule and space out projects over time. Thinking about your deadline as a planning tool can help put you feel in control of the associated anxiety.

 

  1. Write Out a Schedule

A single large deadline at the end of a project can make it difficult to space out your workload and track your progress. Building a schedule of smaller deadlines for distinct parts of the project helps structure your time and prevents a last-minute crunch.

You can build in time for other activities, like going to the gym or cleaning your space, to help contribute to the positive feeling of control. Once you have your schedule written down, don’t forget to cross off tasks as you go along – the satisfaction of another completed part of your assignment will help motivate you as you go along.

 

  1. Break Down the Assignment

Breaking a large project down into smaller individual tasks can make your deadline feel much more manageable. For instance, you can separate a big paper like a research project into basic tasks, such as conducting research, working on an outline, developing a first draft, and revising or editing. Don’t fall victim to the planning fallacy; many tasks take longer than expected, so build in lots of extra time for unexpected delays.

 

  1. Set Smaller Benchmarks

Working toward smaller goals can help satisfy your craving for gratification and accomplishment. When pursuing a smaller task like writing an outline, set a goal for yourself that is quickly achievable to keep yourself moving. A simple goal, like “Write down five topic sentences,” can spur progress that keeps you on track toward completing the larger project.

It’s also helpful to articulate your goals as specifically as possible. Vague goals like “revise the paper” can still seem pretty scary – an even more specific benchmark like “look for spelling errors in the first two pages” can simplify your writing process.

 

  1. Have the Right Workspace and Tools

When you’re sitting down to work on a task, a cluttered desk and an open browser tab can pull your focus away from your work. Avoiding distractions takes a bit of mental discipline, but you can make things easier for yourself by turning off your smartphone, clearing your workspace, and using an add-on that blocks distracting sites like Facebook.

Also, make sure you have all the materials and tools you need to work effectively. Invest in a reliable internet connection so you can hit that 11:55 p.m. deadline without a worry, and look for student discounts for things like Microsoft Office applications rather than struggle with third-party alternatives.

 

  1. Go Easy on Yourself

Like anything else, beating procrastination takes practice. Don’t let a single missed goal derail your entire project. Remind yourself that any minor issues along the way aren’t insurmountable; you can always start fresh and keep working toward your goal. Don’t expect perfection from your work, either. A first draft should be rough and imperfect, and having a foundation for revision helps set you on a path toward completion.

Conclusion

Successfully managing deadlines is as much about your mindset as it is about your process. Through positive reinforcement and the accomplishment of small goals, you can find the energy and willpower you need to persevere. The next time a big deadline looms on your horizon, you’ll have the confidence you need to work productively and meet your objective.

By Allie Shaw

Allie Shaw graduated from the University of Utah with a degree in communications and public relations. She is an expert in all things technology and lifestyle and is a freelance writer for multiple publications.

 

 

 

 

 

5 Things to Never Say When E-mailing a Professor

April 20th, 2018

By: Susan Parker

Communicating with faculty is an integral part of your learning experience at college. Apart from interacting with them to get a better understanding of course material, you’re also supposed to get familiar with connecting with senior figures in a formal setting, which would definitely help you in the outside world.

As with any other form of social interaction, your approach to issues and general attitude when communicating are very crucial determinants of how willing people will be to help you. And one thing that’s certain is that you’ll need your professors’ help at various points in time. Whether it’s with course material or with other academic pursuits like being your references, you really want to be on their good sides.

Email is likely the most common way you’ll be communicating with them, so it’s also the way you’ll make or break your relationship. Here are 5 tips on what to avoid when emailing your professors to be sure you’ll not leave a negative impression:

  1. “I didn’t do well on your test/exam. Can I retake it?”

One of the fundamental ethical points of being a professor is the obligation to give all members of the class an equal chance to do well. If the professor agrees to give you another test, then she would be duty bound to do the same for everyone in the class or everyone who asks for the same thing. The answer will always be ‘no’ so instead of asking that, it’s better to explain the reasons why you didn’t do well and ask them for help in rectifying those issues in any other tests or exams if it has to do with your understanding of the course material or something else that they can assist with.

  1. “I was too busy to meet the deadline. Can I have an extension?”

This is similar to the first one in that it involves the professor giving you an unfair advantage over other students.

“Telling a superior – whether that’s your boss at work or your college professor – that you were too busy to do your duty is offensive,” said Michael Corkery, President of Pool Guard USA. “It reflects poorly on you as a student to fail to do assignments for a professor’s class and then claim it’s because you were ‘busy’. They are busy themselves, and the other students like you who submitted on time were certainly also busy. If they can keep up with their duties, so should you.”

Unless there is a genuine emergency like sickness, this request is likely to be denied every time, and even when you have a genuine reason, it’s best to get in touch with them as early as possible before the deadline.

  1. “Get back to me soon.”

When asking for anything from your professor, you must keep it at the back of your mind that apart from what you say, how you say it is also very important, and can determine what kind of response you get and if you’ll get one at all. It’s okay to indicate that there’s a time element in your request, but it’s definitely not fine to sound demanding and pushy. Instead, take the approach of being polite and thankful. For instance, instead of the sentence above, you could say “Please advise me at your convenience,” after letting them know if there’s a time factor.

  1. “Professor X taught this course this other way”

Every professor has their own style of teaching, and they probably only settled into it after many years of trying different approaches. If you have a piece of advice you’d like to offer regarding their approach, then you should do it politely, but merely saying that someone else does things another way would mean nothing and probably just annoy them. Ultimately, it’s a matter of tack, and if you feel you have to reference another professor, do it by referring to particular stats or elements in their classes, like how more people participated in the lectures.

  1. “I didn’t know we had anything due in this course.”

There is no better way to acquire the title of “unserious student” than saying this to your professor. As a college student, you’re expected to be able to keep track of your courses and know when an assignment is due. Most professors make verbal announcements in class and even send emails, so saying this only makes it loud and clear to the professor that you have not been following the course or that you’ve been skipping classes.

Susan Parker is a writer and tech geek. She volunteers for local environmental conservation programs and writes stories online about things that inspire her.

Traveling the World while Studying Full-Time

April 19th, 2018

BY DAVID GUITIERREZ

Studying full-time while traveling the world may sound a wee bit unrealistic – and it actually was so just a little while ago. However, times are changing, and many colleges today offer flexible opportunities for those not willing to stay in one place. In other words, if you do want to travel, college is not an obstacle anymore.

However, in order to make it work, you have to apply certain efforts and be ready to use your time to maximum efficiency. Let’s take a look at some specifics.

1.    Choose the Course That Ties in with Your Traveling

Or at least one that you are truly interested in. Students have the hard time doing all the assignments for their courses even when they stay in one place with nothing extraordinary distracting them – imagine reading up on a course that bores you out of your mind while visiting all sorts of new and exciting places. It is only going to breed frustration and exasperation.

The ideal solution would be to choose something that can go hand in hand with your traveling: e.g., an East Asian studies degree you will be able to supplement with the first-hand experience of this region or an archeology degree you can take while traveling to actual archeological sites.

2.    Prepare the Necessary Documents

Depending on the countries you intend to visit, you may need specific documents and permits, and obtaining some of them may take quite some time. It means that you have to plan ahead, find out the requirements and obtain the necessary papers beforehand. For example, if you intend to visit Canada, you should submit Canada ETA application early enough to be sure it is going to be ready by the time you head in this direction. Other countries may need visas, visitors’ permits, and other documents, so do the same for them.

3.    Get Really Good at Planning

To make study-travel combo work, you should possess the outstanding discipline and be ready to plan your movements carefully according to the demands of your course. For example, it isn’t the best of ideas to go for a week-long action-packed trip when you have a crucial assignment to complete – but if you foresee it and make sure your itinerary reflects what you are doing for your course, it is entirely doable. If, however, this degree of planning ahead is beyond you, then combining traveling and studies is not for you.

4.    Establish a Routine

Traveling is distracting, there is no going around it. If you let yourself get sidetracked by every new fascinating place you visit, you can very soon find yourself buried deep under unfinished assignments with no realistic way of completing them all. A viable way out is to establish a once-and-for-all routine for your college-related activities. Set aside certain hours every day to go over your assignments and stick to them no matter how much you want to go and do something else. It will take some getting used to but will become automatic in the long run.

5.    Get Reliable Tools

You should have an opportunity to connect with your online learning platform whenever you want, which means that a sturdy smartphone capable of providing Internet connection via tethering and a laptop with wireless connection capability are crucial. As you won’t always have a power outlet nearby, both devices should have good battery life. Spare batteries will also come in handy, as well as a set of international adapters for all your gadgets.

Traveling while studying for a degree may sound like a crazy idea, but with the right planning and enough determination it is not just doable, but fun as well!

David Gutierrez has worked in the field of web design since 2005. Right now he started learning Java in order to get second occupation. His professional interests defined major topics of his articles. David writes about new web design software, recently discovered professional tricks and also monitors the latest updates of the web development.

 

AERA Distinguished Public Service Award (2017) Lecture

April 18th, 2018

Public Policy Impact of Education Research : A 54 Year Career Perspective

The use and impact of education research by policymakers has been of high interest and concern for over a half century. There is some empirical data and commentary that is both positive and negative about whether there is much policy impact from high quality research. It does not help that there has been exponential production of questionable advocacy research funded by special interests and foundations that is disseminated through a variety of digital sources and platforms.

This speech resulting from the Lifetime AERA public service award is different from the usual way these concerns are addressed . The author is both an educational researcher as a Stanford Professor since 1969 ,and policymaker for 54 years starting with the Johnson Administration in 1964 , the US Senate in 1967, and concluding with 15 years on the California State Board of Education (most as President)over a 43 year span. Consequently, a personal perspective is provided of some theories, concepts , and data concerning the policy impact from independent and objective education policy research. The personal component focusses upon why and how particular research studies guided and influenced the substantial overhaul of Ca state policy from 2010 to 2018 while the author was President of the State Board, and an adviser to Governor Jerry Brown. The California analysis is historical because the author was a state policymaker in Governor Brown’s first 2 terms from 1975-1983 as well as using research in federal policymaking 1964-1969.

The objectives of the speech are both to highlight particularly incisive and useful research to overhaul the policies of the largest state, and to reflect on which theories/concepts of research diffusion and use are most applicable to the recent Ca situation. The data is anchored in a study of a state where its enrollment exceeds that of the 22 smallest states, and a majority of the 6.4 million students is Hispanic, and only 25% white. Useful research is demonstrated in various phases of the state policy cycle beginning with problem recognition and concluding with evaluation of implemented policy.The paper is relevant to grounded theory that is a form of qualitative research designs. Lincoln and Denzin (2005) viewed qualitative research as a practice of examining studied subjects in natural settings and then transforming and making sense of the studied phenomenon.

The speech begins with various theories of how education research does and does not influence policy beginning with a 1965 federal government vision similar to agricultural extension agents and federal labs. It covers such approaches as design based implementation research, implementation science, positive deviance, networked improvement communities, and Carol Weiss theories of research diffusion through knowledge creep and percolation. The authors own experience is utilized from a perspective of co- founder for Policy Analysis for CA Education in 1983-2004 at Stanford , UC Berkeley, andUSC that focused on research generation and dissemination for improving Ca state ed policy.

The speech then moves to an overview of systemic state reform beginning in 2011 in California that demonstrates the use of particular research undergirding the distinctive Ca way to improve state education policy. This part demonstrates that independent and objective research can make a huge difference in what policy a state designs and implements over a 8 year period with a rising tide of revenue, a united and sustained political coalition, and a number of big research based ideas. This section will discuss a wide array of policies including new curriculum, teacher development, finance, and linkages to postsecondary education. The speech concludes with several 2018 positive state policy outcomes (graduation, test scores etc) that may be related to state policy change.

Transportation At College: What Can Work For You  

April 18th, 2018

 

BY MIKKIE MILLS

Attending college for the first time can require a lot of planning. One aspect to consider is how you will get around once you get on campus. Cost, campus size, class schedule, and safety are all important factors in this decision. Here are a few options for getting around once you get to the college of your choice.

Driving

Driving may be a logical option for you if you attend a large university or have a class schedule that is spread out among many different buildings. If you choose to take a car to school, there are several things to think about. First, you will want to make sure Freshman or first year students are permitted to drive. Some schools have rules prohibiting this for space reasons. You will also want to check on the cost to purchase a parking permit. Make sure that your permit is valid at each building you will need to park. If you are attending school out of state, you will want to make sure your insurance is valid in that state. Auto insurance quotes can give you an idea what it will cost to keep your car updated while in school.

Campus Transport

Many large campuses offer campus transportation in the form of shuttles. This is convenient for many students who do not wish to bring a vehicle to school. The major benefit of this is that it is usually much cheaper than parking and maintaining a car. The downside of this arrangement is that you will have to plan your day around the shuttle schedule to make sure you can get to where you are going on time. This may not work if you have only a few minutes between classes. It may also require you to give up precious sleep to meet your shuttle early. It is also worth talking to some current students at the university that you hope to attend. They will be able to tell you the reliability of the shuttle schedules and give you additional tips for getting around.

Walking and Bike Riding

This method of transportation is always popular for college students. First of all, it is basically free and extremely convenient. Nearly every campus has bicycle racks for storage. It may also help you keep off that freshman weight.However, this may not be an option during severe weather months. It also generally takes time to get around large campuses, so you will have to plan for this as well. The main aspect to consider with walking or riding a bike is safety. You may not want to walk or ride alone after dark or in remote areas. You may also not want to cross any extremely busy highways or interstates. When you visit the campus, look around to check what bike trails and lanes are available. Watch out for students riding or walking. Chances are, if you do not see much pedestrian traffic, there is a great chance that students have assessed that mode of transportation as being slightly unreasonable. Feel free to talk to students that you see walking or riding as well. They can be your best resource for planning.

Getting around your campus can be easy. Since there are usually multiple options, it may mean that you use more than one method. If you know that you will have to utilize campus transportation, your academic advisor can help you plan classes with enough time to get from place to place. Students that already attend the university or college can help shed light on various transportation issues on your campus. Usually residence life services can advise you on your ability to park your own car. Campus security can help you assess if walking in certain areas is safe. There is no one solution, but you will find that a little bit of planning and knowledge will make getting around easy.

Mikkie is a freelance writer from Chicago. She has a passion for advanced learning, reading, and health and fitness. She is also a mother of two who loves sharing her ideas on education, learning, health, fitness and yoga. When she’s not writing, she’s chasing the little ones around or can be found at the local climbing gym or doing yoga.

 

 

 

Getting the Most out of Your Free Time in College

April 17th, 2018

SYLVIA KOHL

The workload you encounter in college may come as a nasty surprise after what you may have been used to in high school. The problem is not just that there is a lot of work but also that you have to organize it yourself, as nobody is looking for you to make sure you aren’t slacking off. However, no matter how much work you have, there will be free time – and making the most of it is as important an art as getting all the homework done on time, as it helps you keep your mind fresh and prevent burnout. And surprising as it may be, getting royally hammered every evening isn’t the only time to have a great time in college – so if you want to have mercy on your liver, let’s take a look at other opportunities.

1.    Get in Touch with Your On-Campus Buddies during Breaks

During your college years, you are going to meet many new people and make new friends, sometimes even lifelong ones. However, many student buddies lose sight of each other soon after graduating. If you want to prevent this (and have a good time in the process), try keeping in touch with your newfound friends during breaks. You may plan ahead to have a camping trip in summer or do something else that you don’t have time for when you study. This will both help you show that your friendship goes further than college grounds and create some good memories along the way.

2.    Organize Thematic Parties

College is all about meeting new people, opening up to new things and getting new experiences. In most colleges, you are likely to meet a fair amount of international students, coming from cultures that are sometimes wildly different from your own. Why not get together with one such community and suggest organizing a party centered around a holiday that is traditionally celebrated in their culture but is unknown in our country? Or you may simply celebrate someone’s birthday using an unusual national stylistic. Giving thematic, personalized gifts will further enhance the atmosphere – after all, aftershave will probably look out of place if everything else is done in a purely ethnic fashion.

3.    Get Involved with Clubs and Teams

Participating in extracurricular activities will help you both create a deeper bond with college and its community and leave a mark on it, creating a well-rounded university experience. It will also help you build new relationships and meet many new people sharing your interests and hobbies.

4.    Attend Extracurricular Seminars and Lectures

What? More studying? Yes and no. An absolute majority of colleges regularly bring in guest speakers and lecturers, offering unique opportunities for learning from famous experts in their fields. Outside of college attending these events would mean paying a hefty sum for such a possibility – but you can do it for free or at a symbolic rate. Many professors are even ready to reward students with extra credits if they can provide some proof of attendance – so it is both an excellent way to learn and save some time later on.

5.    Learn a New Skill

College is a unique period in your life because you have both enough time and easily accessible opportunities to learn. In a few years’ time you will be firmly engaged in day-to-day work, but now you are free to learn whatever you want: a new language, a musical instrument to play, acquire coding skills – and as a student, you are likely to get a hefty discount.

There are many ways of spending your free time in college in ways that are both productive and fun – so let your imagination run free and try out new things!

Sylvia Kohl is an IT teacher with more than 8 years of professional experience. Her main spheres of interest are e-education and she convinced that learning process doesn’t stop after years in school and university.

 

6 Tips to Keep An Academic Focus During Enjoyable Summer Break

April 16th, 2018

 

BY SCOTT BAY

Nothing feels better than finishing your final exams after a long semester and starting summer vacation. On the flip side, though, few things feel worse than starting classes in the fall feeling completely overwhelmed and unprepared for the semester ahead of you. But how do you avoid the latter without sacrificing the former?

These six tips will help you keep your mind sharp during your summer vacation and ready for classes in the fall—without sacrificing fun and relaxation.

 

  1. Study abroad

Enrolling in a study abroad program is a great way to feel like you’re just on vacation while also gaining valuable experience and school credit. Many programs offer study-specific programs, so you might be able to get credit for your major or minor. But even if there are no major-specific study abroad programs offered, there are plenty that cover general education requirements.

 

  1. Get an out-of-state (or out-of-country) internship

If you’ve reached the point in your college career where it’s time to get an internship, consider finding one over the summer that will take you to a new city, state, or even country. While you won’t necessarily be on vacation, you’ll be able to explore the new area while still keeping your mind sharp, and improving your resume. You may even find a place you’d like to move to after you graduate—as well as gain important industry contacts.

 

  1. Get involved with undergraduate research

Many professors have research projects going on year-round, so get involved with those while you have some down time. Reach out to professors in your college to find anyone who needs research assistants during the summer. This can potentially even count for internship credit, depending on your school and program. Only working on the project for a few hours each week allows you still to enjoy all of the fun parts of summer break and even go on weekend trips.

 

  1. Read

Whether it’s strictly for pleasure or required reading for classes you’re going to take, reading is much better for keeping your mind sharp than a four-month Netflix binge. If you don’t have access to your textbook list yet, consider finding other books that relate to the topics you’ll be studying in your classes. And if you haven’t settled on a major yet, don’t worry. The National Association of Scholars publishes a yearly Beach Books list that you can work through to see what major universities list as recommended reading. This is a great way to keep up with school—especially while relaxing over the break.

 

  1. Plan an educational vacation

When planning your summer vacation, consider going somewhere where you can combine education and fun. Big cities like New York City, Chicago, and Los Angeles are rich with culture and have plenty of museums. If you are enrolled in a US History course, consider hitting all of the Revolutionary War sites on the East Coast. If you’re taking an English Literature or History course, it may be the perfect time to plan that European vacation you’ve been dreaming of.

 

  1. Take summer classes

Though it isn’t the most exciting option, taking summer classes is a great way to keep busy during the break. Consider taking one of your harder required classes by itself over the summer, when you don’t have other classes distracting you. This is also a great way to get extra help from professors– class sizes tend to be smaller over the summer, so professors have more time to devote to individual students.
A few additional tips to keep in mind

 No matter how you spend your summer, there are a few tips to make the most of your time.

 

  • Stay safe: If you’ll be on campus throughout the summer, educate yourself on your campus’s safety resources. And in the event that you’ll be away from home a lot, consider looking into home security options around you.
  • Protect your personal time: While there are plenty of benefits to staying studious over the summer, don’t throw your whole break away by overloading on commitments. Learn to say no to things that would take too much away from your down time.
  • Coordinate with friends: Most obligations are less tedious if you do them with friends. So whether you’re planning to take summer classes or study abroad, see if you can convince a friend to sign up with you.

Don’t pass up the opportunity to get ahead in school over the summer. You can still have fun outside of hitting the books, though, so follow these tips to help you plan a summer break that is perfectly balanced between work and play.

Scott Bay is a digital journalist who covers technology, travel, and wellness — catch his latest clips on Twitter.

 

 

 

Leveraging Social Media For The Job of Your Dreams

April 13th, 2018

BY ANTON LUCANUS

Once upon a time, the internet existed purely for research, communication or entertainment’s sake. The U.S. military funded a research network named ‘Arpanet’ back in 1969 and since, the number of devices with access to the internet has grown exponentially. Of course, with the growth in computers came a corresponding growth in the number of websites, platforms and applications accessible via the internet, and today there exist over 1 billion websites on the world wide web.

But not nearly enough jobseekers leverage the capacity of the internet when job seeking or when in the process of being recruited. Taking a smart and strategic approach to creating an online presence can help you network your way into a job even quicker than you would do via networking events, late nights with prospective employers and endless coffees with “the right people”. Studies show 92% of companies now use social media for hiring, with LinkedIn rated number one —and three out of four hiring managers will check out a candidate’s social profiles when considering their application. By creating professional profiles across LinkedIn, Twitter and Facebook and by using them to network, social media can help you score the job of your dreams. Here are some tip tops as to how.

Firstly, while having social media privacy is important for security reasons you should always ensure you keep information that may appeal to hiring managers public, such as your location, professional skills and employment status. Ensure this information is always searchable – even if you have the job of your dreams you could still be scouted by a larger company with a larger salary offering. Sixty-six percent of companies use Facebook for recruitment and networking and, according to a 2017 CareerBuilder survey, 57 percent of hiring managers are less likely to interview someone they can’t find online.

Next: clean up your social media profiles. Having a brilliant online presence across Twitter, LinkedIn, Instagram and Facebook could push your application to the top of the ladder, but on the other hand posting questionable or inappropriate content on those same platforms could kill your chances of getting a particular job. It’s incredibly important to portray a ‘squeaky clean’ image via your public social media profiles – and that doesn’t only mean removing drunken party pics, drug references, photos of ex-boyfriends and profanities but also removing any updates, photos or shared media that express a potentially offensive or politically incorrect opinion. It’s worth noting that one in three employers reject a job applicant based on something they find on that applicant’s social media profile. There exist a number of tools and websites that can help you to remove questionable content. Delete or ‘untag’ yourself from any photo that may come back to bite you without hesitation, and for every post you have shared ask yourself “does this add to my personal brand?”.

On this note, it’s also important to recognize your social media profile is a reflection of your personal brand. You should portray a clear, consistent, professional image across all platforms – an image appropriate to the field you are seeking to enter. Consistency means ensuring your employment information, location and professional experience are the same across each of your separate social media profiles, as many hiring managers will cross check to establish whether applicants have lied about particular information. The articles, videos or comments you post should reflect your professional values, interests and opinions – to the appropriate extent, of course. For example, if you are seeking to enter into the environmental sector exhibiting support for Donald Trump online is not recommended, nor is sharing a photo or article celebrating the arrest of an environmental activist. Those may be unrealistic exaggerations, but you get the gist.

If you are going to leverage one social media platform in order to find a job, make it LinkedIn. Internationally recognized as the number one platform for recruiting and job seeking, Linkedin was used by a whopping 93 percent of companies even as far back as 2012. Spend some time really perfecting your profile, using specific headlines that correspond with your core skills, updating your professional experience (with details), volunteer experience, network of contacts and summary section, outlining your top accomplishments and your career goals. If possible, use a professional photograph – this demonstrates you are willing to invest in your future and understand the importance of having a professional image. It’s also worth using this same photo across your other social media profiles, to show a sense of consistency. It goes without saying you should make sure your LinkedIn profile is up-to-date with any relevant experience to the industry you are wishing to enter into. For example, if you are moving to the editorial industry from the non-profit one, ensure you have included any editorial internships you completed, published articles you may have produced in your last role and any other accomplishments that relate to communications. If you are interested in a particular job, it’s often worth reaching out to the individual hiring manager via LinkedIn as the response rate is generally higher than it is via email.

It is also recommended job seekers post valuable content on LinkedIn once a day, at around 10am. Shared media content will likely receive more attention than standard text updates, and if you are building your LinkedIn portfolio for work purposes you should ensure the topics you are posting on relate to your industry or field. Tagging other professionals will help generate activity and following for those posts. Most importantly, use LinkedIn to network effectively. Use the LinkedIn directory to find groups within your industry and reach out to potential contacts and employers. Lastly, ensure you are logging onto LinkedIn regularly to engage with those new contacts and networks.

When used properly and professionally, social media platforms are a great place for sharing professional experience, valuable contacts, major accomplishments and volunteer experience with prospective employers or companies. Many companies directly hire through social platforms as well. Social media is a vital cog for any organization looking to expand its branding power. Most importantly, it is what social media is all about – making meaningful connections. Active social media presence will help in better understanding the customer needs and demands. Measuring Social Media ROI for organizations is essential to further grow in this digital world.

Just ensure you do it the right way – otherwise it could harm your chances of success.

Byline – Anton Lucanus is the Director of Neliti. During his college years, he maintained a perfect GPA, was published in a top cancer journal, and received many of his country’s most prestigious undergraduate scholarships. Anton writes for The College Puzzle as a means to share the lessons learnt throughout his degree and to guide current students to achieve personal and educational fulfilment during college life.

 

Things to Consider before Traveling After College Ends

April 11th, 2018

BY JANE HURST

Now that you are graduating from university, what are your plans for the immediate future? Have you thought that you might like to do some traveling before you settle into your career? You have the freedom to do it, and there is no time like the present. But, just because you do have that freedom, it doesn’t mean that there aren’t several things that you need to consider before you just take off. The more you plan ahead of time, the better your post-university travels are going to be, and the more you will be able to enjoy yourself. Let’s take a look at some of the things that you need to consider before traveling once you have graduated.

  1. Your Destination 

Obviously, one of the first things you need to think about is where you are going to travel to. For instance, do you love the idea of backpacking across Europe, or would you rather go to a tropical island, or some remote destination? Once you figure out where it is that you want to go, you can really start getting into planning your trip, including what to pack and your exact itinerary.

  1. The Weather 

One of the main things to consider about any location you want to travel to is the weather. After all, you want to make sure that you pack accordingly. You are not going to want a snowsuit in the middle of a tropical jungle, and you are not going to want a bathing suit in the middle of Alaska during the winter. Make sure that you research other things about the area as well, such as local transit, restaurant prices, etc. so you can travel within your budget.

  1. Working while Traveling 

If you don’t think you can afford to travel after graduation, think again. There are plenty of opportunities for working while traveling, so you can basically work your way across almost any country. Opportunities include working as a farm hand, an AU Pair, volunteering as a missionary (your expenses are paid), etc. Or, you may want to become a remote worker, which allows you to set your own hours and work from anywhere.

  1. Bring the Right Gear 

The closer it gets to travel time, make sure that you have a list of everything that you are going to need to take with you. There are some things you may need and that you cannot get in some parts of the world. “If you will be traveling with a DSLR camera, make sure you have extra memory cards, a USB stick or hard drive, a card reader for downloading photos, etc. It is a good idea to get into the habit of downloading photos at the end of each day to make room for new ones,” suggests an expert from Sell Laptop service.

  1. Booking in Advance 

The more you can plan in advance, the better. Sure, it may sound like fun to just fly by the seat of your pants, but the reality of the situation could be much less fun, and you could find yourself in some pretty strange situations. Therefore, it is a good idea to book as much as possible in advance. Research the best room rates, hostels, etc. Look for places that offer free services, free food (buffets, breakfasts, etc.) so you can save as much money as possible.

  1. Be Open about Travel Options 

Sometimes, you have the best experiences when they aren’t planned, or happen at the last minute. Yes, you do need to plan your itinerary, but you should always leave some room for last-minute changes in plans. In fact, leave a couple of free days in your itinerary so you don’t miss anything due to bad weather, not feeling well, etc. Or, plan to spend an extra day or two exploring each stop, without any particular plans in mind.

Byline:

Jane Hurst has been working in education for over 5 years as a teacher. She loves sharing her knowledge with students, is fascinated about edtech and loves reading, a lot. Follow Jane on Twitter.