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September 2013 Archives

The first month of school has yet to come to a close, and there is an undeniable buzz resonating throughout the halls of Carlson and Hanson. Conversations are dominated by phrases such as "on-campus recruiting," "company info sessions," and "career fair." Though each Carlson student has a unique professional future awaiting them, each will need navigate through the recruiting cycle in order to earn internships and full-time positions with the multitude of companies that actively recruit at the Carlson School. On-campus recruiting may seem a daunting endeavor at first, but you will soon find out that with the myriad of resources at your disposal, locking up that coveted internship is significantly more manageable than you originally anticipated. My name is Nick Helgeson, and as a Carlson Ambassador, I'm here to guide you on the wonderful journey that is on-campus recruiting.

What is on-campus recruiting?
On-campus recruiting is a structured process occurring the first 6-8 weeks of each semester that connects employers in need of qualified candidates with high-achieving students (regardless of year in school) at the Carlson School. 3 main components comprise the process:

1. Company Informational Sessions
These info sessions occur throughout the year and are generally 1-1.5 hour informational events conducted by a specific company. These events are held at Carlson and consist of a general overview presentation by the company's recruiters or staff, followed by a Q&A session and a chance to network with one another. Food is typically provided and dress is business casual. Students must register for each info session through The Edge, Carlson's online internship and full-time position database.

2. Career and Internship Fair
The career fair occurs in the Dairy Queen Club Room of TCF Bank Stadium the second or third week of each semester. Here, over 100 companies have booths with recruiters poised to connect with potential candidates in preparation for upcoming on-campus interviews. This past semester, nearly 1,000 Carlson students attended the fair. Attire is business professional, as this is one of the more important days of the year at the Carlson School.

3. On-Campus Interviews
Prior to the career fair taking place, job and internship positions are posted on The Edge by employers. After the resume submission period is closed, employers make interview selections and interview time slot sign-ups are posted for students that have been selected for on-campus interviews. Interviews take place at Carlson and offers are made within several weeks of final interviews. 

How do I position myself for success with regards to the recruiting cycle?
Though this topic is an entirely different beast, taking advantage of the plethora of resources presented by the Carlson School is the best way to achieve success during the recruiting process. Below are a list of resources to examine:

  • BA 3000 (Career Skills): this class is required for every Carlson student, and is generally taken in the fall of sophomore year. It ensures that no Carlson student graduates without knowing how write a resume, cover letter, tackle the recruiting process, conduct oneself professionally, and more.
  • Resume Review: Recruiters from various companies sit down with students one-on-one and improve their resumes. This provides a no-pressure environment to gain insight from recruiters.
  • Career Fair Prep Workshop: This workshop, as well as other workshops that occur around the time of the career fair, are geared specifically to address students' concerns, whether it be talking with recruiters or tips with interviewing.
  • Mock Marathon: Much like the Resume Review, the Mock Marathon provides students with an opportunity to sit down with recruiters in a no-pressure situation and engage in a mock interview in order to improve interviewing skills.
  • Undergraduate Business Career Center (UBCC): The Undergraduate Business Career Center exists solely to aid Carlson students in achieving their career aspirations. Through various experiences (some of which have already been listed) such as walk-in career coach hours, the UBCC is here to meet your needs. It is located across from Starbucks in Hanson.
  • Meet with you Carlson Advisor: Your advisor at Carlson is invaluable to not only your recruiting process, but to your overall college journey. No professional can cater to your unique issues like she/he can. I can't thank my advisor enough for the support that I have received, in areas from coursework to study abroad to major declaration, and much more.
Though this list is by no means comprehensive, it is a good place to start. Needless to stay, strong academics and involvement outside the classroom are requisites in order to achieve success in the recruiting process.

See? That wasn't so hard. Now, you have a better idea of what on-campus recruiting at the Carlson School entails, as well as resources out your fingertips that enable you to be successful. The rest is up to you. You're responsible for your success, so go out there and get it. Thank you for joining me on this exhilarating journey through the recruiting cycle! Ski-U-Mah!

Engage at the U!

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Coming to college can be a big adjustment. Consider the fact that you don't know where to buy your morning Starbucks, that you no longer see the friends you have been in class with for 13 years, and that you are likely living in a 12' x 12' room with a complete stranger. For a lot of new Carlson students, it can also be a bit scary to mentally "erase" all the amazing activities and awards on the resumes that got them into to college. Coming to college can feel like starting all over again! The good news is that this seemingly distressing time is actually one of those life-changing periods in your life that can shape who you will be for the next four years and beyond.

College campuses are literally a network of amazing students, staff, and faculty with interests as varied as yours. The University Student Union and Activities website (http://sua.umn.edu/groups/) boasts hundreds of student groups ranging from the Active Energy Club to the Zoology Club.  The Carlson community also offers student groups focused on various areas of business and coordinated through a college-wide Business Board.

 I remember attending the activities fair during Welcome Week and being completely overwhelmed by the quantity of organizations and the variety of their missions.  By chance, I spoke with representatives from Women in Business, the organization for which I am now President.  As it turns out, engagement with student organizations is really simple. Putting your name on an email list, speaking with one of the officers at recruiting events, or perusing the SUA website to find organizations that fit what you are looking for are some of the easy, and effective ways to get involved on campus.

Many students also forget the amazing opportunities to get involved outside of student organizations. As I mentioned, the University offers access to some of the best minds in the world. Our professors study topics like the eradication of food deserts through local organic food movements, the evolution of wind power, and the history of rock and roll. As a land-grant university, these professors are continually doing research in their fields (yes- even in business!) and are looking for students to help. Working as an Honors Research Assistant or serving as a class TA can expose you to the cutting edge learning happening right here at the University of Minnesota.

Don't think of getting involved on campus as a task or worry that you need to replace that debate team captain line on your resume. Instead, let your interests drive your engagement and find the organizations, research, and volunteer opportunities that fit you! As most college grads will attest to- learning in the classroom is only part of the college experience. The experiences gained outside the lecture halls are often the ones that stick with you (even after that spring final exam)!

Welcome Home

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Whether you are a native Minnesotan who is relatively familiar with the U, an out-of-state student who is trying to adjust to college life away from home, or an international student who is relocated and is trying to adapt to American culture, adjusting your lifestyle to a college of such massive size with approximately 50,000 people can be rather overwhelming and challenging.  I am no exception.  As an out-of-state student from Louisville, KY with Korean heritage who does not have any kind of ties to Minnesota whatsoever, moving to an unfamiliar place with all strangers was very intimidating at first.  In my personal experience, throughout the freshmen orientation, the welcome week, and even first few weeks of my beginning semester, I was overwhelmed by constant realization that I am in a new environment with new people, like a little fish in the ocean or a little gopher in the forest.  Although these feelings and emotions haunted me for quite a while, I am very confident to say that not once did I ever feel "lost."

            If there is one of many things that I truly appreciate the U for, it would be the fact that the U is trying their very best to make everyone feel at home.  Friendly orientation leaders and personalized tours, amiable welcome week leaders and eye-opening programs that spanned for 5 days--all of these things definitely helped me to get established and nest into University of Minnesota, my new home.  I would give a great deal of credit to those who served as ambassadors and leaders during those times for their benevolent and helpful services that made me feel at home.  It indeed is a great honor to follow their footsteps and help YOU! adapt to new home.

            What are your passions? What do you enjoy doing?  University of Minnesota also offers hundreds of different student organizations/clubs and hosts many various events and fairs throughout the year--it would be literally impossible for you to not find a club of your interests.  Finding student organizations of your interests and getting involved on campus are great ways to stay busy and make new friends, let alone all the valuable experiences you get out of them.  As an avid music lover, I am a member of University of Minnesota Steel Pan Ensemble, playing drums.  To build a necessary business network, develop my epistemic enrichment, and learn more about my major, I attend ClubMIS (Management Information Systems) meetings every other week.  Also, I am an officer/MC of Korea's Island Dokdo, a cultural club that promotes diversity and spreads cultural awareness on campus.

            Making a big place small is easy at the U.  No matter where you come from or what your interests are, University of Minnesota provides lots of opportunities for you to be involved and will more than adequately accommodate you.