Lean In – What would you do if you weren’t afraid?

I’ve been reading “Lean In” this summer and I love it. I really didn’t know much about it; but on a recruiting trip someone mentioned the quote: “When someone offers you a seat on a rocket ship, you don’t ask what seat you just get on.” after that I knew I had to read it! It focuses on how women tend to shy away from leadership roles instead of going for them or “Leaning in”. Reading the book I’ve realized I’m definitely guilty of this. I’m not one to speak up much in meetings, I’d rather ask questions in private than in public, and usually prefer to work behind the scenes. One of the questions they proposed to readers was “What would you do if you weren’t afraid”

I watched the video and I tried to think what I missed out on. Luckily for me, I have friends, family, and faculty who always seem to force me to do something when I don’t have the guts to. I came up with three things

In 5th grade I won the spelling bee, but I was too nervous to get in front of the entire school to compete. So I let my best friend take my place. I was tired of being seen as a geek and didn’t want the entire school to see it.

Things I would’ve done in college.

1. Studied Abroad

2. Ran for SGA. I had the mentality that my parents aren’t rich, I’m not in a sorority, and I’m black no one would vote for me. Unfortunately a lot of students feel the same way, they shouldn’t but they do. The worse part about it is, it’s not anything that anyone has said to us,  just our own doubts keeping them from running.

3. Joined more organizations and ran for executive office.

We should all make a more conscious effort to lean in! It’s good for us and future generations of young women!

What would you do if you weren’t afraid?

Side note: If you’re looking for something else about women empowerment check out Miss Representation!

I wish the world was more like a Zumba class

Over the past four years, my favorite place on campus has been the Rec. Good day or bad day I could always find a reason to go there. I’ve taken belly dancing, abs class, salsa, Bootylicious, hip hop aerobics, and nothing bring me joy like a good hard Zumba workout. If you ever wondered what diversity looks like peep your head into room 104 at 12:10 or 5:30pm.

You would see people dancing without a care in the world. Men and Women of all shapes, sizes, ethnicities, ages, majors and sexual orientations. It’s one of the few places in higher education where you won’t find yourself put into a box. No one is talking about what sorority they’re in, or how much their parents make and no one is judging you no matter how bad you think your dancing is. I’m not sure why doing squats to a T.I song and doing the cumbia generate a universal sense of belonging, but it does and I wouldn’t have it any other way.

Trashy 2 Classy Fashion Show @TexasTech

Today Dr. Su Shin’s Apparel Design and Manufacturing students hosted the Trashy 2 Classy Fashion Exhibition in the Library. All of the students are in her Fashion Illustration class and had to make an illustration of the garment and then create it from recycled materials. This is the third year they have had the Trashy 2 Classy exhibition in partnership with the USGBCS (United States Green Building Council Students). I spoke to the Vice President of USGBC at Texas Tech, Emily Latham, and she told me this organization is focused on sustainable design and advocates for green design. Typically, they partner with Architecture, interior design or construction students; but this event draws a whole new student demographic.

One of my friends, Lisa Hon, was presenting her dress that she made completely out recycled materials. The dress was made from a marketing canvas from Ann Taylor that was going to be thrown away. The back straps were made from shopping bag strings, and held with coke can tops, and the clutch was made from shopping bags. It took her about three days to complete the dress that she worked on during spring break. Her model was Krystal Loya, a senior studying Retail Management.

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Another favorite of mine was Mary Burt’s dress. She’s a sophomore at Texas Tech and her dress was made from plastic and paper shopping bags.

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Taylor Dawson made her dress out of coffee filters, plastic bags, and newspaper to create a really cute couture look. She was actually inspired by flowers and floral designs she saw on Pinterest! She worked on it all spring break and actually used her brother as a human mannequin during the fitting.

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Last, but certainly not least is Elaine Morton a sophomore who created this really cool rain coat out of CASSETTE TAPES and Packing Tape!

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I thought this was a really cool event, that really allowed students to be creative and let their talents shine.  Some cool way to promote your fashion show or designs

  1. Instagram: Not only can other see who has liked the photo, but by using hastags you can increase your reach. #WomensFashion or  #Fashion.
  2. Facebook Events inviting your friends and having a cute flyer goes a long wayCheck in once you get there!
  3. Tumblr is such a great outlet for Fashionista, designers, and illustrators. You’d be surprised by how many people will like your work.
  4. Vine – Record a mini catwalk!
  5. Do your strut around the free speech area or library before the show so people will be curious about what’s happening. Think Fashion Flash mob!

Be on the look out for more info on this event in the Daily Toreador and Texas Tech Today! Wreck Em Tech & Go Green!

Lisa Hon, Krystal Loya, and Me

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Intern Hack No. 4: What to put on your resume

How to Beat the ‘Black Hole’

You don’t have to be an astronomer to know about one kind of black hole: the online job application process.

But have hope. There are things you can do to increase the chances of getting your résumé through employers’ applicant screening systems, say experts Josh Bersin, CEO of human-resources consulting firm Bersin & Associates and Rusty Rueff, career and workplace expert at Glassdoor.

Below, five tips to up your odds:

  • 1. Forget about being creative. Instead, mimic the keywords in the job description as closely as possible. If you’re applying to be a sales manager, make sure your résumé includes the words “sales” and “manage” (assuming you’ve done both!).
  • 2. Visit the prospective employer’s website to get a sense of the corporate culture. Do they use certain words to describe their values? If a firm has a professed interest in environmental sustainability, include relevant volunteer work or memberships on your résumé. The company may have programmed related keywords into its resume screening software.
  • 3. Keep the formatting on your résumé simple and streamlined—you don’t want to perplex the software. With a past position, the system “sometimes gets confused about which is the company, which is the position, and which are the dates you worked there,” especially if they’re all on a single line, says Mr. Bersin. To make sure you hit all the categories, put them on separate lines. And “don’t get cute with graphics and layout,” says Mr. Rueff.
  • 4. Some screening systems assign higher scores to elite schools. You may not have gotten your B.A. from a top-tier university, but if you attended a continuing-education class at one, include such qualifications on your résumé.
  • 5. But don’t ever lie or exaggerate just to get through the screening process. Recruiters and ATSs are savvy about tricks jobseekers use (such as typing false qualifications in white font). “You don’t want to get through the black hole and find out it’s a worse hole you got yourself into,” Mr. Rueff says

This article “how to beat the black hole” by the WSJ was super informative. a lot of companies have computers that pull your resume and scan for keywords and other info to select you go to the next round. I know what you’re thinking, your whole life you’ve been told to make your resume stand out. We’ll crazy formatting, and made up words to describe your last position might not be the best way to get there. last spring I visited an oil company in the Houston area and spoke with the hiring manager. She informed us that no one is spending hours reading resumes by hand. She spends less than 60 seconds on a resume to find out if they’re in or out.

Here are her top 3 applicant killers:

1. Bad formatting

  • Your resume should not look like connect the dots.
  • Make everything line up correctly.
  • Your resume shouldn’t be wild colors, or have a photo on it.

2. Lack of contact info

  • You would be surprised how many people actually leave off how to contact them. They might put their name and forget everything else.

3. Spelling

  • Self explanatory.

Here’s what I suggest. You might want to have separate resumes. One that you would hand out in person and one to submit online. For example the gentlemen below has a killer resume even online it stands strong. This would be great to hand out at a job fair, or after to get the interview in person, however it might confuse this computer with the qr code.

There are lots of ways you can use these tips and still stand out for example check out “Hire-matt.com” and click on his resume tab.

The original article can be found here: http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424052970204624204577178941034941330.html

Thoughts of a Graduating Senior

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  • What am I doing with my life?
  • Where do I even apply?
  • When do I apply?
  • Where am I going to work?
  • How do I negotiate my salary?
  • Where am I going to live?
  • How am I going to figure  all of this and pass this impossible class?

These are a few of the questions swimming in my mind as I approach graduation. I’m a May graduate so I still have a bit of time, but with every friend that accepts an offer I think I’m running out of time. (And will probably end up living out of a cardboard box.)

So let’s start at the top. “What are your plans after graduation?” This question has started to make my flesh crawl. “My plans are to be happy and successful” is not a suitable answer. As a freshman you probably could just say “I’m a ____ major and I want to work in the ____ field” Very vague, when you’re a senior people expect interview dates, a list of companies cities, and actionable life plan. So instead of giving yourself insomnia just spend a weekend brainstorming. Spend some time and think about what it is you love, what you’re good at, and where you want to be.

For me my brainstorming lead me to multicultural marketing. Most of my time is spent using my marketing skills to recruit students, finding out how to keep them engaged in my organization, and with Texas Tech University. I serve as the social media coordinator for two multicultural organizations and I’m constantly thinking of campaigns and positioning strategies.

  • Then next thing I did was talk to a recent graduate who was in that field.
  • Then did some research about a few companies that did that type of marketing.
  • Talked to hiring managers at former internships to find out when the general hiring time is for Marketing industry. (Or your University Career Center)
  • Now that you know what you want to do, you can take on projects to help get your more experience in that industry.  You might want to consider doing undergraduate research.

I don’t have all the answers, but I have a pretty good starting point.  The most important thing is to remind yourself to breathe! Have faith in yourself and the skills you’ve acquired at your school and search with a clear head. The last thing you want to do is apply for the wrong type of job and settle for something you hate.

Happy Hunting!

What you need to know about Business Cards

These are pretty much the coolest business cards I’ve ever seen. I got a Klout perk for some for free and checked out their site. If you’re a creative person (Graphic Design, Fashion, Photography, Modeling, Accessories Maker, Musician) I’d HIGHLY recommend these. They have plenty designs to choose from, or you can upload your own art. The cool thing about Moo.com is that each card can be customized to say a different thing. The only things is with the perk you have to have Klout on the front 😦

These are some what my practice card until I perfect what I should have on them for the long haul.

Check out my favorites below

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Take 10% off by clicking here: http://www.moo.com/share/tx2ptb or join Klout.com and get the perk yourself for FREE!

You can also check out Vistaprint for some free cards or the career center at your college. The Career Management Center at Texas Tech offers business cards for a low cost.

When designing my card I started to wonder what makes a good creative business card? What should I have on it? QR code? A photo? I stumbled upon this article What College Students Should Have on Business Cards.

What to Include 

Contact information should be the main focus on college students’ business cards and should include: name, phone number and e-mail address .

“If you want, you can include ‘NYU class of 2011’, or you can include what field you’re in, such as ‘marketing professional’,” says Pollak.

Tony Conrad, founder of About.me, points out that if you have a URL that recruiters might be interested in (such as a professional blog, or personal Web site) you can include a QR code.

“The fact that you have [a QR code] and understand it and that you’re using emerging technology, that shows that you’re ambitious enough to seek out something new and implement it to your benefit,” he says. “It means they can contact you for your specific talents and start the conversation already knowing some of your background.”

Creativity

Depending on the field (especially in graphic design, architecture, art, etc.), experts encourage students to get creative with their cards.

Conrad advises students include an aesthetically-pleasing image that makes a statement rather than going for shock value.

“Well-shot photography and clean typography has been a winning strategy in advertising for more than a century,” he says. “If you think of yourself as a luxury brand, present yourself as a luxury brand.”

I also read this article on Forbes.com

Make Your Business Card Stand Out

Don Crowther thinks you should put your picture on your business card. Not only that, but he wants you to include a mini-résumé, your Twitter handle and some sort of special offer that entices each recipient to get in touch.

Check out both of these articles and get yourself a deck of business cards!

 

**Update**

My Business cards are here! If you sign up with About.me you can also get some free business cards!

Business Cards

Networking for Dummies!

t’s that dreaded time to get a recommendation letter and other than your Mom, best friend, and co worker from high school you’re drawing a blank. I personally hate asking for reference letters, but they are essential and a must have. In person I don’t mind talking to people, but I dread drudging up people from my past to beg them for a letter. So how do you build your networking circle? Here are 5 easy steps that might help you out.

  1. Linkedin
    If you have one already change your password, after that start looking for colleagues, fellow classmates, and former bosses. They also have a feature where someone can recommend you which is great so you don’t have to make a billion copies of one letter, or encase an email in amour.
    Now a lot of people say ” I have a facebook, a twitter, a blog why do I want linkedin?” Recruiters might do a bit of research on you before they hire you I know before I started my first day of work the HR recruiter actually looked and added me on Linkedin. This is a great to put your professional presence out into the real world. I’d rather have employers looking at my Linkedin profile at relevant info than my Facebook.
  2. Facebook
    I’m not necessarily a fan of adding employers on facebook, but your current colleauges in school are a great idea. This can keep you connected with the campus or area and when people graduate it gives you an informal way to keep us with people who might enter a field you want to break into.
  3. Mingling
    Good ole fashion hob-knobbing with people. Don’t be shy go out and talk to some people. Even those gnarly professors who seem to be delivered from Hades often have a much more inviting personality in their office away from the Lecture Hall. Going to someone’s office to talk can say a lot more than a quick 2 liner email.  In this day and age people spend most of their time tweeting and texting about where they are than talking to the people who are there. (GUILTY) Staring at your phone can get people to remember you for the WRONG reasons. You don’t want to be the stand offish person in the corner.  Also, don’t stay glued to your friend.You are not Siamese Twins. Branch out! Sometimes standing around with your friends joking can alienate others from speaking to you. Use open body language.
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  4. Happy Hours A lot of organization and company’s go out for lunches, dinners and happy hours as a group. While your initial thought might be “I already have to see these people all day why should I spend MORE time with them?” This is an informal setting to relax and really get to know the interesting facts about people. It’s a great way to stand out from everyone else who is in a cubicle or classroom from 9-5
  5. Tweet!
    Tweet out to professors, follow companies you work for or want to work for. I’ve actually had people in interview say “Oh I remember your tweet”. You’d be surprised how happy it makes people that you saw and followed what they said. I usually don’t follow people I don’t know, but every now again one of your friends followers has some relevant info on their account and might tweet out some opportunities for you.

The best time to do it is while you’re still there because once you switch jobs, graduate,people change numbers, get married, retire, etc then you have out dated contact info, so get out there and work work

So Tell Me about yourself

I recently went to an information session for an internship and instead of just introducing us with name badges or a quick “Hi my name is ____” The host told us we must share an embarrassing story about ourselves, sing a song, do a dance, or recite a poem. My initial thought was great, I don’t know any poems of the top of my head in its entirety, I’m not singing, I’m surely not dancing, and why do I want to embarrass myself in front of my employer. I personally hate ice breakers, I don’t have a fear of public speaking I’d just rather not do it.

The two that stood out the most were

The most embarrassing story some guy cracked his head on a stairwell and bleed on some scantrons

A young man recited a poem by Shel Silverstein “My Beard”
My beard grows down to my toes,
I never wears no clothes,
I wraps my hair
Around my bare,
And down the road I goes

 
And a girl told a joke: “What’s brown and sticky” A STICK.

So as you’re preparing for conferences, interviews, and other business ventures you might want to brush up on a clutch parlor trick to get you through these situations, so you don’t have to share how you fell down the stairs, or pants ripped in public. You never get a 2nd first impression, so why not leave your competition shaking in their suits with a bomb.com introduction. You don’t have to pick something profound, you can google short poems or haikus that are easy to remember so you don’t forget them. But if you write your own poetry, songs, or are creative in the arts this might be your opportunity to show off.

For my poem I’ve picked:

Dreams by Langston Hughes

Hold fast to dreams
For if dreams die
Life is a broken-winged bird
That cannot fly.

Hold fast to dreams
For when dreams go
Life is a barren field
Frozen with snow.