Marketing Coordinator for The League for People with Disabilities
GradtoGreat.com is honoring college students and graduates who are conducting, or have completed, creative and proactive job searches. If you want to nominate someone, including yourself, to be highlighted in our Great Grad’s Gallery, please contact us.
Alicia is being featured as a "Great Grad" because her proactive job search - using online resume technology - landed her a fantastic new job!
G2G: How bad is it out there? How long did it take you to find work?
AA: I can honestly say the job market is really bad. It took me 5 and a half months to get a decent job offer.
G2G: What role did your online resume play in landing your job?
AA: My employer informed me that my entire presentation and the descriptions I included of me and my capabilities were more advanced than the seasoned professionals who also interviewed for this job position. He stated that my interview skills, portfolio and VisualCV were very impressive. As a young professional, it is a great advantage when you can surprise potential employers with your skill sets and present a higher level of professionalism than they might not otherwise have expected.
G2G: Why did you decide to use an online resume?
AA: After graduating from college, I was on a mission to stand out from the competition in the job market. The fear, mystery and excitement of post-college life led me to believe that I needed an innovative presentation of myself to catch the attention of desired employers. I faced many obstacles as a recent college graduate. For example, employment competition was very tough because I did not have as much career experience as the seasoned professionals during the current economic crisis. However, VisualCV allowed me to compete with individuals who had more experience than me. VisualCV provides multimedia web applications and creativity for FREE! Employers immediately noticed my VisualCV with video, photos, and portfolio samples.
The VisualCV online format was very convenient for employers and also provided an opportunity for them to save my entire profile as an Adobe PDF file. As a result of using VisualCV, I received many job opportunities as well as the attention from employers that I would not have usually obtained as an inexperienced recent college graduate. For example, my VisualCV attracted the attention from organizations such as the Duke Divinity School, the National Wildlife Federation, the American Association for the Advancement of Science, the Defenders of Wildlife, the Christian Children's Fund and the Helicopter Association International.
G2G: How did your employer find you? Did you refer them to your VisualCV, or did they actually find you on the site?
AA: My current employer, The League for People with Disabilities, noticed my VisualCV and contacted me immediately after submitting my cover letter and resume.
G2G: Did you find the site easy to use?
G2G: Do you know other people who use it?
No, but I introduced the site to my colleagues and friends.
G2G: Did you seek employment using social networking sites?
AA: Yes, I used sites such as Idealist.org, Monster.com, Myspace, etc.
G2G: Alicia, is there any advice you would offer to college seniors and recent grads who are looking for jobs right now?
AA: I believe college seniors or recent college graduates should begin their job search during the last few weeks of their college semester, prior to graduation. One of the worst parts about the job application process is the long wait. This will cut down the time span it takes to hear back from employers and increase their chances in the tough competition if they apply to jobs early.
Recent grads need to take advantage of the new multi-media online resources like I did with VisualCV.com because it can be a great opportunity to stand out. Grads need to stand out [and exhibit] professionalism.
G2G: Is there anything else you'd like to share about your job search experience?
AA: I would like to emphasize that VisualCV made the application process a lot quicker for several of the job openings I applied for. I received phone calls and emails from several employers faster than I could have expected. VisualCV also allowed me to get further in the application process than I would have if I did not use the site. For example, I would not have received any attention at all from Duke University without some kind of unique approach as they typically don’t reach out to recent college graduates you tend to have a low level of work experience.
G2G: Congrats and thank you Alicia for being a Great Grad!