The 12 Days of Career Prep Success

Can you believe winter break is just 10 days away?!

Between napping, hanging out with friends and family, celebrating the holidays, and eating delicious homemade food, you might be thinking, “are there any ways I can be productive over Winter Break?”  Well, the Office of Career Management has some ideas for you!

Alas, we have compiled the 12 Days of Career Prep Success.  Now, this doesn’t mean you need to devote 12 whole days of your precious three-week break to prepare for your career.  We suggest you pick out three or four items on our list and dedicate a few hours over the three-week span to feel accomplished!


  1. On the first day of your Career Prep journey, the Office of Career Management said to you, “Relax!”  You just conquered a busy, and possibly, stressful, semester.  Take advantage of this time off and find ways to provide you with stress relief! Follow the Buckeyes Blog Linkto see how other students are finding ways to relieve stress or download the Counseling and Consultation Service App on your phone and click on the “Stress Busting” page.
  2. On the second day of your Career Prep journey, the Office of Career Management said to you, “Prepare your application for your specialization (if you are changing your specialization).” To declare or change your specialization for the summer semester, you must submit your application by January, 31st.  Follow the Undergraduate Admissions Link for more information regarding this process.  If you are having trouble making a decision about your specialization or want to explore different career paths, make an appointment with Katie Reynolds in the Office of Career Management by stopping by our office or calling 614-292-6024.
  3. On the third day of your Career Prep journey, the Office of Career Management said to you, “Revise your job search materials.” Spend time reviewing your resume, LinkedIn profile, cover letters, etc.  The more people looking over these materials, the better!  Refer to our Job Search Handouts Page
  4. On the fourth day of your Career Prep journey, the Office of Career Management said to you, “Update your FisherConnect profile.” If you’ve never logged onto your FisherConnect profile, do so ASAP and start exploring the different features.  If you are active on FisherConnect, but you have some outdated information on your profile, take some time to ensure all of your information is accurate.  Go to the FisherConnect Link to log-in to your account.
  5. On the fifth day of your Career Prep journey, the Office of Career Management said to you, “Set FisherConnect ‘job agents’ to send to your email.”  To create a job agent, click on the “Jobs” tab and then choose “Job Search.”  You’ll then submit the job criteria you’re looking for, such as “Accounting Internship.”  Click “Save Search” and create an easily identifiable title for this search.  You will then click on “Email me New Jobs” to notify you of new opportunities.
  6. On the sixth day of … okay, you get the point: “Set LinkedIn goals.” Maybe your first goal is to create a LinkedIn page.  Or maybe you are already have a profile, but aren’t sure what to do with it.  Set small goals, like checking LinkedIn daily, making three new connections per week, or following one new site a week, to help you get started!
  7. Schedule informational interviews.  Many students return home for winter break or spend their time surrounded by family and friends.  Why not take advantage of these personal connections by arranging times to ask them about their career path and experiences?  Maybe you have a family friend who has worked as a consultant for the last 25 years.  Reach out to her to see if she would be available to meet over coffee or have a phone conversation with you.  LinkedIn is also a great way to arrange informational interviews.  Search The Ohio State University and/or the Fisher College of Business’ alumni network to connect with people working in your field, company, or geographic location of interest.  Refer to our Networking – Informational Interview Guide for assistance!
  8. Conduct company research.  Do you have a dream company?  Are there companies you know will be at the Spring Career and Internship Fair on February 2nd, 2016?  Review companies’ websites, speak with current employees, and Google the companies to see what is going on with them currently.  Look through our Company Research Guide for some tips!
  9. Read the news.  To help supplement your company research, start reading the news to stay current.  In this day in age, the news is constantly around us – on TV, at our fingertips, and in our e-mail inboxes.  Make it a point to follow reliable news sources on Twitter, check the news on your Facebook, and/or sign up for daily news emails from sites like TheSkimm.
  10. Make progress with the QUIC program.  If you’ve been admitted into your specialization, you’ve already accomplished Step 1 of the QUIC process!  Refer to the Become QUIC Webpage to learn how you can become certified as a Qualified Undergraduate Interview Candidate and gain access to on-campus recruiting opportunities.
  11. Report your internship or full-time employment to Career Management through Fisher Career Data Central (FCDC).  Have you already secured a summer internship or full-time employment post-graduation?  Report your plans to FCDC by following this How-To Report Your Plans Guide.  The Office of Career Management uses this data to help current students gain an understanding of companies hiring for their specializations and average salary levels, etc.
  12. Go shopping!  If you have an upcoming internship or full-time position, think about purchasing business casual and business professional clothing to complete your wardrobe.  Or add them to your holiday wish list!  Feel free to refer to the mannequins within the Office of Career Management for some tips!

We hope you have a safe, happy, and healthy winter break!  The Office of Career Management will remain open during the break, if you are interested in meeting with our staff members during that time.  Call 614-292-6024 to schedule an appointment.

#tbt The Waiting Game

Imagine the following situation: You apply for a position that you’re very excited about. You meet the qualifications and are really interested in the company. Over the next few days, you check your e-mail constantly. Every time you see a new e-mail alert, you think “this could be it!!” One week passes. Nothing. Two weeks pass. Nothing. You start to wonder, “Did I remember to press ‘submit’?” Three weeks pass. No response. It’s over, they’re not interested… right?

You might be wrong! How to Find a Job advises:

“The list of prospective employers you have prepared is a “live” list and it is certainly worth more than one follow-up. Do not consider that the prospect is “dead” just because you received no reply…”

It is appropriate, and recommended, to follow-up a few weeks after applying for a position. You can follow-up by calling or e-mailing the hiring manager or HR representative and requesting information about the status of your application. Make sure to introduce yourself and reference the position that you applied for and the date on which you submitted your application.

Companies that post positions on FisherConnect will often provide an application deadline, but companies that advertise elsewhere may not provide this information. In these cases, it can be very helpful to follow-up about 2 weeks after submitting your application. A word of caution: make sure to respect the employer’s timeline, if provided. For example, do not follow-up if the application deadline has not yet passed. Additionally, avoid repeated and frequent inquiries. You might need to move on to other prospects, but it never hurts to follow-up!

Tip Tuesday: What to Wear

Written by Career Coach, Cat Hyland

This post goes out to all the ladies struggling with their business wardrobes these days…I mean seriously—what in the world is business casual?


It seems that men have it pretty easy when it comes to business dress standards. For them, business professional means a suit and business casual means a button down and nice pants.

For women, there seem to be many more options and often times the lines can feel much more blurred between business casual and business professional. If you’re someone who feels anxious over these blurred lines, read on…

Here are a few tips (from the perspective of a fourth year Fisher student) to help you along when you are trying to decide what to wear.

  1. If you are asked to dress business professional for an event, a pant suit is great. However, I personally don’t really like the way pant suits fit me, so I tend to lean toward “skirt suits” (suits with a pencil skirt instead of pants) or business style dresses with a blazer. This makes me feel more comfortable and confident while still feeling professional.
  1. If you are asked to dress business casual, feel it out. You can tell when an organization is more on the traditionally business professional side. In these situations, I would lean toward dressing more business professional just to be safe. This might mean a business style skirt and blouse or dress pants and a blouse (a blazer isn’t necessary, but never hurts). However, many organizations these days are becoming more casual in their dress standards. In these situations, it is safe to be a bit more casual. This might mean nice dark pants (not necessarily the pants from your suit, just make sure they are nice fabric and not jeans) and a nice blouse or sweater.
  1. If you are attending a networking event with multiple companies, lean toward dressing more professional. Obviously these companies will differ in the dress that they expect to see, but no one will ever be disappointed if you are “over-dressed” for a networking event.
  1. Whether you’re expected to dress business professional or business casual, conservative is always good. Tight & short are words that typically don’t go well with business attire for women. If you’re wearing a dress or nice shirt that does not cover your shoulders entirely, be sure to have a sweater or a blazer to go along with it. Length of dresses and skirts should be appropriate.
  1. It never hurts to ask what is appropriate! Here is a personal example… During my internship this summer, we were expected to dress business casual. Having the information that I learned throughout my time at Fisher, I assumed that this meant I still needed to wear closed-toe shoes with my outfits. However, it was the middle of summer and I noticed that some people throughout the office wore open-toed shoes. I was dying to wear some of my cute sandals or open-toed heels with some of my business casual dresses and skirts, but didn’t want to make any assumptions that it was appropriate. Instead, I simply asked the intern coordinator what kind of shoes would be appropriate and she confirmed that cute, classy, strappy sandals, or cute open-toed heels were indeed acceptable. This made things much easier and I never had to second guess whether or not I was making a mistake.

Hopefully, this post helps clear things up a bit (especially for underclassmen who are just starting to experience situations where they are expected to dress business casual or professional). Stay tuned for my next post with some suggestions about where to shop for business casual and business professional attire!

#tbt By failing to prepare, you are preparing to fail. –Benjamin Franklin

Written by Undergraduate Consultant, Marlina Frederick

Cliché, but true! Prior to an interview, it’s important that you prepare by conducting company research. How to Find a Job explains:

“It’s very natural for you to want to “drop everything and run,” getting there as fast as you can; but that’s the wrong thing to do. There’s work to be done before you make that call. First, if you haven’t found out facts you ought to know about the firm you hope to become associated with, do so before you call. Important facts are: (a) the business of the firm, (b) what goods they produce or sell, (c) the length of time they have been in business, (d) their financial rating, (e) the kind of job you are to apply for, (f) your qualifications for that job.”

If company research seems kind of overwhelming, remember that job seekers in the 50’s didn’t have the World Wide Web at their fingertips! Utilize the company’s website, online business journals, and company information databases like Hoover’s to help you learn about the company. For more information on how to conduct company research, check out our Company Research Guide. Happy researching!

#tbt Mirror, mirror, on the wall …

Some things haven’t changed since the 50’s. How to Find a Job reminds job seekers to check personal appearance before heading to an interview:

“Did you bathe? Is your hair neatly combed? Are you teeth brushed? Is your breath sweet? Are your fingernails clean? Are your shoes shined? Are your clothes neatly pressed? These may seem like rather personal questions, but you must remember that employers are—and have a right to be—extremely critical. If you are slovenly in appearance, they have good reason to believe that you will be slovenly in your work.”

Take a minute to check your appearance in the mirror (and maybe give yourself a quick pep-talk!) before heading off to an interview. Good luck!