Next Stop: California

The school year has ended! I am now officially halfway through the Masters of Human Resource Management program here at Ohio State and one step closer to receiving my degree. Whether you have been following my blog posts throughout the year or are just tuning in, one aspect of the MHRM experience I’ve tried to highlight is how the program prepares students for success by offering multiple opportunities to turn theory into practice.

The Ohio State University Oval in full bloom

One of the MHRM program requirements is to complete either a thesis or a practicum. So what does this mean exactly? Students choosing the practicum plan pursue an internship to gain practical experience in an HR role. The internship is a full-time 40/hr. a week working commitment, typically completed during the summer between years 1 and 2 of the MHRM program. The focus of this plan is to allow students to practically apply knowledge and skills acquired through MHRM coursework in a real business setting. In addition to this, an internship or practicum experience is an opportunity for further career exploration, leadership and skill development, networking, and can lead to a full-time job offer.

I along with a majority of my peers have decided to pursue the practicum option. Although our final exams and projects have concluded, the first year MHRM students, myself included, are now gearing for our summer internships where we will be taking on various human resources roles all across the country. In two weeks, I will be heading out to Ontario, California to intern with Niagara Bottling Company. I will be working in the human resources department on their workforce analytics and compensation team for 10 weeks. I’m excited to take a break from classes and to see what the west coast has in store for me, however, I will admit I’ll be taking some of my textbooks with me in case I need to reference them on a project. I’ll be sure to write a blog post about my internship experience when I return for the fall. Have a great summer everyone!

Internship Relocation Guide

If you went through the recruitment process this school year and secured a summer internship then you may be feeling a sense of accomplishment and relief that it has come to an end. For those who are required to relocate for the summer, finding housing is more thing on the to-do list that can be a  timely challenge if you are moving to an unfamiliar location. Questions such as: Where do I live? Who can I live with? How do I find something short term? How much is this going to cost? I found myself asking these questions and more as I prepared to head to the west coast for the summer.  I hope that my experience of finding summer housing can help those reading with their own moving process!

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Full disclosure, the cost of living and availability of housing will differ between locations and it is worth asking the organization if they offer relocation stipends or having corporate housing options.

Connect with Other Interns 

Most organizations will utilize Linkedin Image result for connect iconor Facebook groups to introduce incoming students to their internship cohort. This is a great opportunity to expand your network and find others who are looking for roommates and housing options as well. In addition, there may be students who already live locally that can offer suggestions on where to live or provide housing resources in the area. If the employer you’re going to be working for doesn’t do this currently, ask if you can have a contact list of the incoming interns.

 Short Term Options

Some apartment complexes Related imagewill offer short term leases but with a premium on top of the regular rental prices. This definitely isn’t the cheapest route to take and I would research other options prior to resorting to this one. Other options include searching for colleges in the area rent out vacant dorm rooms for the summer, hotels that offer short term stay discounts, or utilizing Airbnb.

Subletting

Subletting is more than likely going to be the best value, many students will be looking to sublease their apartments for a lower price than they actually pay. Some of these offers may also include utilities or come Image result for sharing iconfurnished. Search for colleges within the area and see if they have an off-campus housing page. If you don’t find it at first don’t be afraid to call the university and ask for it. A quick google search can also provide many links to sublet apartments in the area.

I hope these options will help you to find the perfect place for the summer! When in doubt, don’t hesitate to reach out to family or friends who may have contacts in the area your looking for. Congratulations on the opportunity to expand your resume and gain real-world experience. Best of luck this summer my fellow interns!

2019 Women’s Leadership Conference

Last week, I attended the 2019 Women’s Leadership Conference at The Ohio State University! The event was coordinated by Fisher Graduate Women in Business (FGWIB)  with the topic of cultivating an entrepreneurial mindset. FGWIB is a student organization that acts as a forum to discuss and address issues relevant to women in business and build awareness of women in leadership positions. The event was hosted in the Blackwell Hotel on campus and kicked off with a lunch and panel of women leaders.

Power Panel Speakers: 

  • Kara Trott, Founder and CEO, Quantum Health
  • Paula Bennett, Former CEO J.Jill, Inc.
  • Camille Gibson, Former VP Marketing, General Mills
  • Angel Harris, Executive Director, Dress for Success Columbus
  • Moderated by: Rhonda Talford Knight, President & Founder,
    Knight Consulting Group

Each of the speakers shared their entrepreneurial journey, what entrepreneurship means to them, how they led others, create buy-in for their visions, and gave advice for aspiring leaders. The panel was followed by networking and breakout sessions that included three learning opportunities:

Option 1: Building Your Personal Brand
Natasha Pongonis Co-Founder & CEO, OYE! Business Intelligence

Option 2: Seeking and Securing Advocates
Fran Skinner, CFA, CPAChief Administrative Officer – Investments
Diamond Hill Capital Management

Option 3: Getting Started as an Entrepreneur
Malika Jacobs, Fisher MBA,Founder, Kingmakers Board Game Parlour

Because of my interest in entrepreneurship, I listened to Fisher alumni Malika Jacobs, who shared the realistic challenges and successes of starting her own business right here in Columbus. Some of her highlights were that there is never a perfect time to start a business,  a good support system is essential, and that being an entrepreneur requires tenacity.

Finally, we heard from the keynote speaker, Natalie Keller Pariano, Chief Sprinkler of Positivity Confetti of NatterDoodle in Columbus, who talked about facing adversity on the entrepreneur’s journey. There was also an appearance by the Dean of the College of Business, Anil Makhija!

Overall, it was a wonderful event and I’m glad I had the opportunity to listen to many accomplished, talented women speak about their experiences.

Here are my top takeaways from the day: be curious, empower others, don’t underestimate your value, nothing is going to be handed to you, love what you do.

 

External Case Competition

Disclaimer: If you haven’t checked out my previous blog post about the Fisher College of Business MHRM Internal Case Competition, it provides further detail about the format of the case competitions which I refer to in this post.

As a quick overview, the MHRM program hosts an internal and external case competition each year. For each of the competitions, students form teams to compete against one another to solve an HR-related business problem presented by a sponsoring organization.

The internal competition involves teams of first- and second-year MHRM students and the winners from this event are selected to participate in the external competition. The external competition is hosted by The Ohio State University and invites universities who also have well-recognized HR graduate programs to participate in this event on a larger scale.

The weekend began at the Blackwell Hotel where all the teams were introduced to one another and enjoyed a dinner sponsored by Marathon. The universities in attendance included the University of South Carolina, Texas A&M, University of Illinois, Cornell, Minnesota, Rutgers, and West Virginia University. After dinner, we continued to mingle with the other teams at the Varsity Club, a well-known bar near the university.

The following morning was the start of the competition and when we were given the case. This year’s business problem was presented by Eaton Corporation, a multinational power management company. Essentially, they were in search of a solution that would improve coaching within their organization of 98,000 employees.

This solution also needed to touch on functions such as recruitment, engagement, and retention. The case was definitely challenging due to the large scope of the issue and it needed to be applicable to all generations, skill sets, and demographics of employees.

In order to be prepared for the next day’s presentations, we created a timeline and checklist of items to be completed. We started with a silent 15-minute brainstorming session that allowed us to each come with ideas on our own before we discussed them as a team. From there, we wrote down our concerns and potential solutions on the whiteboard.

As we began to discuss solutions, we realized we could implement strategies from various classes we have taken such as talent management, leadership, and staffing.

Once our solution was narrowed down, we assigned specific parts of the solution to each team member and organized our presentation from there. It’s a long day and it can be easy to get caught up in the overload of work, so it’s important to schedule breaks to eat, stretch, and clear your mind along the way.

Early the next morning, the teams returned to present their solutions in front of a panel of Eaton and industry professionals. Each team had 20 minutes to explain their solution and answer questions. Many unique ideas were brought to the table but ultimately the University of South Carolina was recognized as having the best solution. After the competition, we celebrated our hard work over lunch and were able to have feedback sessions with the judges.

I was able to take what I learned from the first experience and apply new strategies this competition.

Having been part of the internal and external case competitions, I was able to take what I learned from the first experience and apply new strategies this competition, which reinforces the practical experience component that I believe is crucial within this program. Additionally, not only did I get to become further acquainted with my own classmates but  I also mad connections with students from other programs and HR professionals across many different industries. This has continued to be an important opportunity to me because the individuals I am networking with today are going to be the future HR business leaders of tomorrow.

Tips for Virtual Interviews

Part of the application process for the Master of Finance, Master of Accounting, and Master of Human Resource Management programs involves completing an online video interview.  Here are some of my tips to help you ace our virtual interviews.

  • Look into the camera.  If you were in an in-person interview, you would look the person you are speaking with in the eye, right? Why not do the same for a virtual interview?
  • Pick the perfect spot.  Try to find a place that is clean, quiet, and comfortable.  We do not want to be distracted by people walking by you in the background or background noises.
  • Don’t drag it out.  If your response is shorter than the amount of time allocated for it, there is nothing wrong with ending the video! Don’t throw yourself off track by making the story longer than it needs to be.
  • Dress for success.  Dress as if you were going to an in-person interview.  Looking your best conveys the message that you are interested and prepared.
  • Test your technology beforehand.  Make sure that your browser is compatible with the interview platform.  Check to see that your voice is not too loud or too quiet.
  • Practice – Before you start the interview, make sure you have different ideas of talking points you would like to bring up to generic interview questions you may get.  Get the nerves out early!
  • BE HONEST & YOURSELF – This could be our only chance to get to know you before making a decision on whether or not to admit you into our program.  Be honest and genuine with your answers.  Let us know what you are passionate about and what makes you unique!

Best of luck with your application to Ohio State!

*Disclaimer : This is my personal advice to you and may not reflect the opinions of The Ohio State University as a whole.

Coffee & Conversation

I recently attended “Coffee & Conversation” an event coordinated by the MHRM Council that hosted program alumni who currently work in the Columbus area. They each shared their experience with the program, how they began their HR careers, and their tips to becoming a leader in the HR industry today. This event also included a lunch and networking session after the presentations.

Tony C. – Vice President of Human Resources 

Undergraduate Degree: Psychology, Kenyon College

Year Graduated from the program: 2005

Current Role Description: Manages the entire employee life cycle with a specific interest in organizational structure and employee development.

Career Advice: Be approachable, explore new functions of the business, take feedback, and be the person that gets things done.

 

Diandra S. – Talent Acquisition Sr. Specialist 

Undergraduate Degree: Psychology, The Ohio State University

Year Graduated from the MHRM program: 2017

MHRM Activities and Societies: MHRM Student Council, Fisher Graduate Women in Business Executive Board, 2015 MHRM Internal Case Competition Winning Team, Graduate Assitant

Internship(s): Cardinal Health

Current Role Description: Consults, provides support and acts as a strategic partner to the recruiting team on pre-employment activities and employee mobility.

Career Advice: Listen to others, give credit when it is due, be positive and have a professional presence.

Shannon M.-Talent Management Specialist

Undergraduate Degree: Strategic Communications, The Ohio State University

Year Graduated from the MHRM program: 2016

Internship(s): Texas Instruments and Victoria Secret

MHRM Activities and Societies: MHRM Council, Fisher Graduate Women in Business

Current Role Description: Supports the home office and stores in talent management and sourcing.

Career Advice: Understand the business your in, utilize data to make decisions, and always find ways to make improvements in your work.

Going to these type of events are a continuous reminder of the limitless opportunities we have as students and alumni of the Masters of Human Resource Management program. I’m grateful for the alumni that continue to be a part of what we do here every day at Fisher!

 

Growing Professionally and Giving Back with Fisher Board Fellows

“I now call this meeting to order…”

Sitting in on your first nonprofit board meeting can be an eye-opening experience, especially if you have never worked on a board in the past. Now, heading into my eighth month as a Board Fellow for Dress for Success-Columbus, I am able to actively participate in board meeting discussions and share updates on my resource development committee projects.

Reflecting back, being a part of Fisher Board Fellows has been a wonderful opportunity to give back to my community, better understand the governance of nonprofit organizations, apply lessons from business school to a real-world setting and grow my network. In addition, committing to the mission of Dress has grown my perspective regarding our local community needs and areas of opportunity in Columbus.

Fisher Board Fellows is a student-run organization that places students on local nonprofit boards during the second year of the program, attracting candidates from the full-time MBA, MHRM and MBA for working professionals programs. Candidates go through an application process to join the organization, complete training in the second semester and join their board in the second year of the program. As Co-Vice Chair of the organization, we work hard to maintain our relationships with our nonprofit partners and will have 34 partners this coming year!

Some of our partner boards include: United Way of Central Ohio, BalletMet, A Kid Again, LifeCare Alliance, Columbus Zoo and Aquarium, Local Matters, and many more. Please check out our full list here. This year, we are also excited to add several new partners including: YWCA, Flying Horse Farms, Columbus Humane, MBA Research and Curriculum Center and SmallBiz Cares.

Fellows work on a wide range of strategic projects for their organizations, ranging from donor engagement research and improvement planning to marketing and communication plans and inventory management system recommendations. In addition, fellows are provided a board mentor during their time with the organization to help navigate the new experience and set them up for success in providing impact!

This organization has been, hands-down, one of the best experiential learning opportunities during my time at Fisher and I look forward to continuing my relationship with the board post-graduation this May!

“The meeting is now adjourned!”

More than an HR Degree

Being a part of the Masters of Human Resource Management program in the Fisher College of Business isn’t only going to prepare you to succeed in the field of human capital but to develop you as a strategic leader in today’s ever-changing business environment. Each student in the MHRM program
is required to take a certain number of electives in order to complete their degree. These electives may be graduate level BUSMHR courses, independent study, or electives outside the Fisher College of Business that are related to human resources. With such variety in electives, a student truly gets to tailor their degree to what interests them most. It also provides the opportunity to interact with other students in the masters of finance, accounting, and business administration programs.

Additionally, students who have completed undergraduate coursework in human resources or business from a U.S. institution, or have worked full-time in an HR role, may petition for a waiver from certain MHRM core courses. I especially love this aspect of the program because it prevents overlap of courses and allows you to replace them with different learning opportunities.

Since my undergraduate degree was in human resources, I’ve been able to take advantage of the course waiver option and take several electives this year. Last semester, I took Crucial Conversations, which focuses on learning skills for talking when the stakes are high and creating a professional presence. At the end of the course, the entire class was certified in Crucial Conversations, a popular employee training used by many corporations. This semester, I am taking Negotiations, which focuses on learning effective negotiation strategies and how to analyze behavior within a negotiation. I am also in Mergers, Acquisitions, and Corporate Development, which teaches students how to analyze the mechanisms underlying the creation and destruction of value in mergers and acquisitions from a strategic perspective.

Overall, when you get a Master’s degree in Human Resources at The Ohio State University you get so much more than HR functional knowledge. This setup creates a unique and diverse learning environment, allows you to expand your network and to see business issues from different perspectives.

First Semester Takeaways

Happy New Year, everyone! The spring semester is in full swing and it is great to be back on campus at Ohio State University. Over the winter break, I traveled to cities such as Denver and Chicago, hung out with friends and family, and relaxed with a good book in my spare time. With a whole semester to reflect back on, I thought it may be helpful to share some of my first-semester takeaways.

Create Goals

Before each semester, I recommend writing down goals you want to accomplish over the course of the semester. These goals can be academic, personal, professional, or developmental. No matter how big or small, highlight specific actions you can take in order to make them happen and surround yourself with others who have similar goals. Then you can hold each other accountable for them and work toward them together. If you enjoy being creative, make a vision board for a physical representation of what you want to achieve.

“People with goals succeed because they know where they’re going.” —Dennis DeYoung

Get Involved

Getting involved outside of the classroom is a great example of what an achievable goal could be. It may be joining a student organization, volunteering in the community, playing an intramural sport, or attending campus events. Doing any of these activities is a great way to de-stress, make friends, and gain experience in an area you may be interested in. Some of these activities may also bonus as a resume builder.

Be Organized

I cannot stress this enough. Trying to balance work, school, and other activities along with multiple deadlines occurring throughout the year can be difficult. Be prepared and keep a physical planner or online calendar. There are plenty of free apps and websites that can be used if you want to take your calendar on the go. Another tactic I like to use is setting reminders for myself on my phone or online calendar. Whether it is to pay a bill, check my email, or to turn in an assignment, these reminders keep me from forgetting or procrastinating if something is important. Start creating good habits now and find a routine that works well for you.

Have a Good Time

Last but not least, you need to have fun! Having a support system and outlets to de-stress are both extremely important. Graduate school can be mentally as well as physically exhausting at times so be sure to always take care of yourself first.

Farewell to Autumn 2018

I cannot believe that my first semester in the MHRM program has come to a close. As I reflect on the past 14 weeks, countless hours have been spent in the classroom, at work, studying, and participating in school-related activities. Though most of my posts focus on the professional aspects of graduate school, I wouldn’t have created a realistic picture of my experience thus far if I didn’t mention the amount of fun I’ve had attending social events, hanging out with my classmates, and getting to know Columbus. Many great memories have been made but here are just a few of my highlights of the semester.

The Friendships

Coming directly from undergrad into the program, I was used to being in a place where I felt comfortable, had a close group of friends and network of supportive professors. Moving to Columbus meant exchanging that lifestyle for a city and university where I didn’t know anyone. I was nervous about how I would make connections and create a similar community for myself.

As the academic year began, I was able to get to know my peers through orientation activities such as a high ropes course, scavenger hunt, and happy hour mixer. Continuing through the semester there were social events organized by the MHRM council that allowed me to develop friendships with my classmates. It was much easier to survive the semester with them by my side.

The Football Games

Another one of my favorite activities of the year was attending the football games. The saying that Ohio State has “The best fans in the land” is no understatement. Buckeye nation is high energy and school spirit all the time and you truly get to experience that by attending a game. Being at the OSU vs. Michigan game was one of my memorable experiences of the semester. 

 

The Opportunities

The Fisher College of Business has afforded me so many great opportunities to develop myself personally and professionally throughout the semester. Each month there are numerous events that graduate students can take advantage of such as networking lunches, internship search workshops, leadership conferences, and skills training series.

One unique example of this was being invited to have lunch with the dean of the business college.  The top three teams from the MHRM Internal Case Competition were recognized for their hard work and able to give feedback on how future competitions could be improved.

The City of Columbus

Perhaps one of the most unexpected things about moving here has been how much I enjoy being in Columbus. There is no shortage of things to do or places to see. In my free time, I love to explore Columbus’s different neighborhoods, new restaurants, coffee shops, and attend special events going on out throughout the city. I’m happy to call Columbus my home for the next year and a half.