All posts in category Job Search Advice
Posted by eraucso on December 22, 2014
Rick Uskert graduated from Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University – Daytona Beach in 1996 with a degree in Aircraft Engineering Technology. He is currently a Senior Engineer at Textron Systems Unmanned Systems.
What has been your career path since graduating from Embry-Riddle?
My career started during one of the slumps in the aerospace industry and I took a job with a company in NW Indiana designing industrial equipment. After a few months, I interviewed with a consulting engineering firm in the Chicago suburbs which providing structural and fatigue fracture analysis to the aviation industry, both commercial and military. The guys I worked for and with were brilliant, having written fatigue analysis and damage tolerance of structures content for several publications; however, I as a more creative person at heart – and still am – so post-damage analysis wasn’t a path I wished to pursue.
The next five years were spent working in the medical industry, designing instruments for minimally invasive open heart surgery, stents, airway management and many other products. As the company manufactured product for many of the big companies, such as Abbott, CTI and Stryker, I touched many products which were mainstays of the operating room and in-home care products during the 1990’s and 2000’s.
From there I turned back to aviation and, while working at Pratt & Whitney, furthered my education and career through a Master’s degree in Management and New Product Development at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute in Hartford, CT. During my time at P&W, I worked with a great team in the Compression Systems Module Center (CSMC) designing and analyzing composite components for the F119 and F135 engines which power the F-22 and F-35 aircraft.
My next hop was to Rolls-Royce in Indianapolis to design Ceramic Matrix Composites (CMC) components for the hot section of advanced technology gas turbine engines. The composite technologies used between the front end of the P&W and the back end of the RR engines couldn’t be more dissimilar and each had their quirks and limitations which needed to be accounted for in the product designs, which made each task challenging. Working at the leading edge of ceramic matrix composite technology application has led to a number of patent applications for our team.
Currently, I work for Textron Systems Unmanned Systems, formerly AAI, in Maryland as a Sr. Aero/Mech Engineer, responsible for managing project tasking and the associated resources to integrate new product onto the legacy Shadow UAVs, increase capabilities through airframe upgrades and provide product designs to future systems.
You have worked in a variety of fields, what lessons have you gained from varied experiences?
The first lesson I learned was engineering is engineering and the fundamentals are the same. Designing a product to save someone’s life in the operating room is not much different than designing one to protect a soldier’s life on the battlefield. Each project starts with requirements, progresses through material selection, design analysis and manufacturing. I’m simplifying here, but the fundamentals are the same; one only needs a willingness to learn the differences in materials and how best use them in each application.
With each employment change, I have been able to draw upon knowledge I gained from past experiences, all the way back to the beginning of my career, even though it has been based upon dissimilar products and/or industries.
I have also learned what I enjoyed the most, and personally that is working in a small company environment. Those companies are the most dynamic and they offer opportunities to act in multiple roles and to get one’s hands dirty building product. That has been most enjoyable for me.
I have worked with a number of great, experienced teams; resulting in products which have helped many people continue their own lives and professions. Because of this, I do not look for a greatest accomplishment in my career, as I associate that with an object and I tend to be more of an experience type of person. That being said, I have considered meeting soldiers who have stated that our products have been responsible for their safe return from the field as well as people which have used the medical products I helped develop as highlights to my career. Those instances act as reminders as to why I choose to work on these products.
What advice do you have for graduating students to be successful in the job search?
Everyone is encouraged to research the company and the job they are considering applying for as best as they can. Many times a job posting is very general, especially for entry level positions, so one should understand the type of products that company and/or division develops. Make sure that is what you want to work on and tailor your experiences to that company. It takes time and effort; however, it allows you to stand out as a candidate.
All companies are interested in understanding what you have accomplished individually and as a team member. Include two or three examples of this information on your resume in a concise manner. If you are invited for an interview, be excited about being there and confident in presenting your product: yourself. During the interview process, we are judging your personality and how well you may fit with those already established on the team in addition to your technical ability.
Finally, look for opportunities that may not be the vision of your dream job, as one does not fall into that position upon walking off campus. These other experiences open doors in the future, allowing you to set a path towards that end goal, as it changes over your career.
Posted by eraucso on December 1, 2014
E. Blair Johns II graduated from Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University in December 1998 with a degree in Aeronautical Science. Currently, he works at Envoy (formerly known as American Eagle Airlines) as a commercial pilot.
What are the highlights of your career so far?
The path I took to build my flight hours, experience and qualifications opened some unexpected windows into an adventure I had not seen coming.
Flight instructing and getting to fly C402 at Ocean Wings in Nantucket not only brought about an adventure as to where I was flying but also to where I was living. Had I anticipated where I would lay my head at night I believe I would have looked elsewhere. From a hostel to a hanger office and eventually a bedroom in a small house, made for meeting great friends along the way, and certainly filled that adventure craving I so anticipated from a career in aviation.
Eastern Air Charter stepped it up a bit as far as the techniques of flying my first turboprop. The Cheyenne II was the perfect fit to not only fly passengers expeditiously to their destinations, but we flew the Cheyenne at all hours of the night as a transport for organ bank donor flying. We would get called out at night as a reserve crew might, and quickly get the aircraft prepped for the medical transport. We would fly to a city, pick up a team of surgeons, and fly to another city where a deceased organ donor was operated on by the surgeons. Once the surgeons were finished with the operation, we would then take them to another city, where a patient in need was urgently waiting for the organ and surgeon team we flew back with us.
This type of flight operation helped me prepare for the airline world of sometimes complex yet rewarding commercial transport. Through my time at American Eagle, now Envoy, I have been challenged many times and have felt as though each is a valuable learning experience. Nothing can drive home a lesson better than being thrown into a situation with little warning and allowing your training to instinctively take over. From inflight emergencies to customer anomalies on the ground, at the airline, the training happens as much on the line as at the training academy. It is a true sense of satisfaction when you can look back at a safely completed flight and talk over the whole situation with your fellow crew members about what went well and what you all might want to improve on. It is surely a skill refining exercise to go through these unexpected situations.
How has your Embry-Riddle degree opened doors for you?
One of the first memories which come to mind about my time at Embry-Riddle are the friends and camaraderie a student is immersed in the moment they arrive on campus. The collective love of aviation was electrifying and settling into a new and unfamiliar life, from everyday living to studying, was immediately put at ease knowing I was now amongst many other enthusiasts. All of this fervor helped me leap into the courses with a hunger for all that Embry-Riddle could fill. The lifestyle of managing the class schedule with early morning flights was a challenge at first but prepared me for the sometimes demanding schedule of airline life. Juggling a schedule like this is part of the college program across our country at many schools, yet the structure I was given through Embry-Riddle’s aviation curriculum helped carry me through those demanding days.
What three traits or skills have made you the most successful in your career?
Perseverance: Prioritizing my goals and envisioning the desired outcome, yet stopping every day and taking in the realization that my current place in my career was the goal at some earlier point in life. This helps me reflect on and appreciate where I am in my career.
Empathy: No person is isolated from the rest of world, we all have relations with others and putting this trait into action helps interpersonal relationships grow exponentially. In the customer relation business airlines are built upon, this trait is essential to nurturing and growing our airline’s business.
Teamwork: From departure gate to en route to the arrival gate, the amount of planning and work that goes into one flight is astonishing when realized. In the airline environment many people are involved in the process of getting a flight off the departure gate on time and much of this goes understandably unnoticed to the public eye. We operate every flight with a concept known as Cockpit Resource Management (CRM). This is essentially a communication loop built with teamwork where each inflight and ground crew member is involved in a feedback process whether the flight runs normal or encounters any degree of abnormality. Put simply, CRM is the fuel which the machine of an airline operation needs to run successfully. With the amount of customers and employees involved in one day of an airlines operation, we would be hard pressed to complete it all without a good teamwork environment.
Are there any challenges that students need to be aware of as they enter the workforce?
Do you have any advice for students seeking positions in the aviation industry?
Changes are happening rapidly in the airline industry as far as the modeling of regional and mainline staffing and operation. New flight hour minimums and regulations have increased the required minimums an applicant to any airline must need, 1500 total time with an ATP. Retirements at the three largest mainlines; American, Delta, and United are due to produce an approximate number of 10,000 positions over the next ten years. The third factor of massive growth for the next decade is the new rest regulations now in effect, requiring longer minimum rest overnights which increases staffing required to cover the schedule each week. Envoy currently has a pipeline program in effect with various flight schools including Embry-Riddle, where an applicant’s total flight time may be reduced to a lower minimum. This program allows the hiring of an applicant before they meet the minimum flight time and subsequently working to gain the flight time before flying the line at Envoy.
A couple of challenges which anyone interested in the airline career should be aware of is the family dynamics involved with being away from home three to four nights a week. Whether you live in base or commute like myself, having an understanding spouse at home is something I am very fortunate to have. My wife Amy and I met when I was on my way to new hire training with American Eagle, so from the beginning she understood the dynamics of being apart for periods of time and was acclimated to this by the time we lived together. Leaving Amy to a house full of kids mixed in with her full time job is not for everyone, though I am lucky to have such a compassionate and loving partner who understands very well the life we as airline pilots live. In the beginning of my time at American Eagle, Amy would come along on overnights with me and got to meet the excellent people that make this job so fun. Understanding the day-to-day life whether on reserve or flying a scheduled line of flying was a good foundation to our relationship in later years. While we may be gone for days at a time, we can have three and sometimes four or five days off at a time, depending on the way we can move our schedules around.
Overall, it is a great time to get into the airline industry with the known turnover from retirements for at least the next ten to fifteen years. It will become a very rewarding career with the changes coming. The flying bug bites such a diverse group of individuals and that fact makes this job a very fun and interesting one. Some pilots started young knowing this was their career of choice, while I’ve flown with many who have previous careers ranging from Wall Street stock floor traders to Psychologists, making the switch and starting over as a career airline pilot.
I often remark to my fellow crew members that we have what I believe to be the best corner office with a view unparalleled. It is quite a place to sit, watch and reflect on all that activity encompassing that fond planet we soar over each day.
Posted by eraucso on November 24, 2014
The Career Services staff at Daytona Beach wanted to have a part two to a blog from in August. There are so many quotes that can continue to motivate through a co-op/internship and/or job search. Here are more of the staff’s favorite inspirational quotes. Feel free to read part one here.
“No one can make you feel inferior without your consent.” ―Eleanor Roosevelt
“Don’t be afraid to fail. Don’t waste energy trying to cover up failure. Learn from your failures and go on to the next challenge. It’s OK to fail. If you’re not failing, you’re not growing.” –H. Stanley Judd
“One important key to success is self-confidence. An important key to self-confidence is preparation.” –Arthur Ashe
“You miss 100% of the shots you don’t take.”–Wayne Gretzky
“Enter every activity without giving mental recognition to the possibility of defeat. Concentrate on your strengths, instead of your weaknesses… on your powers, instead of your problems.” –Paul J. Meyer
“Whatever you can do, or dream you can, begin it. Boldness has genius, magic, and power in it.” –Johann Wolfgang Von Goethe
“Limitations live only in our minds. But if we use our imaginations, our possibilities become limitless” –Jamie Paolinetti
“When one door of happiness closes, another opens, but often we look so long at the closed door that we do not see the one that has been opened for us” –Helen Keller
“A person who never made a mistake never tried anything new.” –Albert Einstein
“You have to learn the rules of the game. And then you have to play better than anyone else.” –Albert Einstein
“If opportunity doesn’t Knock, build a door” –Milton Birle
“The greatest accomplishment is not in never falling, but in rising after you fall” –Vince Lambardi
Posted by eraucso on November 20, 2014
Kevin MacLean is a May 2001 graduate of Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University – Daytona Beach. He completed his Bachelor of Science in Aeronautical Science and is currently a helicopter pilot for NextEra Energy.
What does your current role with NextEra Energy entail?
Since 2006, I have been flying helicopters and jets for an outfit in Palm Beach, Florida called NextEra Energy. This Part 91 flight department has 2 Agusta helicopters, 2 Citation XLs, 2 Falcon 2000s, and 11 pilots. The helicopters usually fly all over Florida and into the Keys, while the jets cover the entire North America, Caribbean and occasionally Europe.
Landing at a flight department like this was a career goal of mine. I fly the line and am also a Training Captain on the helicopters.I assist with new hire, recurrent, and instrument training. Interestingly enough, my dad is actually the one who first told me about NextEra’s flight department, having been and engineer working with the company for over 40 years.
How did you make the initial transition from fixed wing to rotor?
My transition from fixed-wing to helicopters occurred six months after starting my initial fixed-wing flight training. Thankfully, my comrade Hugh, connected me with his good friend Josh, who was chief pilot for a helicopter company at KFXE in South Florida. Josh recruited me as an intern, where I quickly earned my helicopter ratings. In the year 2000, I was an ERAU student with a helicopter in Daytona. This served as my time-building flying job senior year and beyond graduation.
Based on your experience, what are the advantages of working in corporate aviation?
In my experience, corporate aviation is a real blessing. Each outfit I have had the pleasure to fly with has been like a small family with a very personal feel. It usually is a fairly low stress environment. Corporate aviation’s goal is to be safe, flexible, convenient, and comfortable. We often have very sophisticated equipment and there also tends to be a variety of destinations.
What personal attributes do you feel help to make one successful in the corporate aviation environment?
A good attribute for success in corporate aviation is flexibility. These groups are small, relying on the limited staff to do a variety of tasks. A positive attitude goes a very long way. The flight crew is faced with new challenges best handled by the problem-solving personalities. Another valuable tool is the ability to work well with others, because everyone wants to be around quality people.
What advice do you have for current and future pilots seeking work in corporate aviation?
Emphasis on networking is huge advice for pilots seeking work in corporate aviation. Networking starts in flight school and continues beyond the time you actually find the job you are looking for. I personally have flown for over a half-dozen different corporate outfits, and each one of these opportunities became real due to networking. Stay in contact with your peers, and make new contacts: classmates, coworkers, social media, job fairs, internet research, and other methods. Remain professional as you network and prepare for a flood of success.
Posted by eraucso on November 10, 2014
Krystel Parra is a recent graduate of the Aerospace & Occupational Safety undergraduate degree program at Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University (ERAU), Daytona Beach campus. She is currently pursuing her Master’s degree in Occupational Safety Management at ERAU, Worldwide. Krystel also works full time as an Internal Evaluation Program Auditor in Spirit Airlines’ Safety Department.
As an IEP Auditor, I am part of the Internal Evaluation Program (IEP) in Spirit Airlines.
We provide a high level surveillance and evaluation of how well the company’s processes and procedures are performing in respect to safety. I work with Spirit’s business partners and Team Members in all types of operational departments to ensure that our customers get from point A to point B as safely as possible by performing evaluations, risk assessments, and providing corrective actions to the operational parties.
My Bachelor of Science in Aerospace and Occupational Safety degree gave me the tools that are required in the safety profession. While in Spirit’s Safety Department, I use what I learned in the classroom and apply it to the workplace. For example, when performing evaluations of workplace conditions, my knowledge of federal regulations learned from classes such as Environmental Compliance & Safety, Industrial Hygiene, and System Safety provide me the tools I need to successfully perform my duties as an IEP Auditor.
Posted by eraucso on November 3, 2014
By: Sally Richards
Spend some quality time using a variety of resources searching for companies and researching those companies for potential career employment. It is important to determine which company is right for you and if you are right for that company. Searching and researching go hand in hand.
You may already have a group of companies you are familiar with that you think are your targeted companies…but what about the other thousands of companies, contractors, agencies and organizations that you aren’t familiar with and may have overlooked?
Many job seekers tend to want a list of prospective employers, but that doesn’t address an individual’s preferences, goals, interests, experiences, background or desires. Based on your academic degree and passion, determine the general industry or focus that fits your education or your ideals and desires.
So, where can you begin to search for and research companies?
Take advantage of Embry-Riddle’s Career Services resources for your initial landing site.
- Embry-Riddle Career Services website: http://careers.erau.edu/
- Useful Links (Links to 100s of corporate websites, government agency websites, specific population websites, job search engines)
- EagleHire via Ernie (Research potential employers)
- Company presentations on-campus (Learn about companies directly from company representatives)
- Career Services Organization on Bb > External Links
- Career Shift (Company information and contacts from a compilation of job boards)
- Going Global (Corporate profiles for worldwide companies in various industries)
- AWIN, Aviation Week Intelligence Network including the World Aviation Directory also called the WAD (Utilized to conduct company research)
- Embry-Riddle Hunt Memorial Library
- Hoover’s – ProQuest Central online database/Publications Search for Hoover’s (Company information)
- Business Insights: Essentials online database (Business profiles)
- Business Source Complete online database (Business profiles)
- AWIN -Aviation Week Intelligence Network including World Aviation Directory online database called the WAD (Utilized to conduct company research)
- Corporate Company websites
- Government Agency websites
- Networking, contacts and connections
- Social Media (LinkedIn-professional networking; Facebook; Twitter; Pinterest; Instagram)
- Google searches on companies
- Magazine articles
- Trade Publications (Employers industry activity; contributions related to their field and organization)
- Professional Associations (See how employers contribute to the profession)
- Advertisements (Marketing information may be a key to how successful a company is in business)
- Conferences (Opportunities to talk with company representatives attending professional conferences)
- Faculty (Connections to industry from research and prior careers)
- Databases (Targeted business profiles and information)
- Dun & Bradstreet
Now that you know where to search for companies and view their profiles, you’ll be able to decide with confidence whether the company culture, growth, strategies, goals, policies, values, and mission of the company align with your current and future expectations. Discovering additional companies outside your initial handful expands your employment potential and opportunity for success.
Once you’ve searched, researched, and concluded a company is right for you, hence, earn your paycheck from, you’ll still have to apply, interview and be selected for a position. Remember, it is 100% your choice to apply to companies in which you have an interest and it is also 100% your choice whether you accept a company or organization’s offer of employment. Your choice will be based on an educated decision!
Sally Richards has 30 years of experience in higher education with a proven track record in Career Services. Sally started her career with Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University’s Aeronautical Engineering Department. Currently as the Career Services Cooperative Education/Internship Program Manager, she manages and facilitates operations of the Co-op/Intern Program for the team of Program Managers and ensures adherence of Co-op policies and procedures while overseeing conflict resolution for co-op situations. Her credentials include aviation/airline industry experience in flight recruiting, maintenance planning and passenger service with two major airlines and one regional carrier, as well as studies at Kent State University in Ohio.
Posted by eraucso on October 30, 2014
Can you please discuss your career path since graduating from Embry-Riddle?
I started at the customer service desk for Butler Aviation at Palm Beach International Airport (PBI), and went through the merger that formed Signature Flight Support. After a couple months, I was promoted to Operations Supervisor, and eventually Airlines Supervisor (mostly for a UPS freight and cargo operation). After a few years, I took a job as General Manager for Hawthorne Aviation (which became Piedmont-Hawthorne and is now Landmark Aviation) at Lakeland-Linder Regional Airport (KLAL). There, I was promoted to Regional Manager and covered four FBOs in Florida, two in Georgia and two in North Carolina. After several years in the position, I left to form my own company and find an airport suitable for my own FBO plan.
After a year of doing some FBO consulting, my new company (Atlas Aviation) won the RFP for FBO services at Peter O. Knight Airport (KTPF) in Tampa, Florida. We’ve now been here just over 10 years, and have a busy Part 61 and Part 141 flight school (Cessna Pilot Center), a full aircraft maintenance shop (Cessna Single Engine Service Center) and the full ground services of tiedown, hangar storage and aviation fuels. We have hosted AOPA Expo and AOPA Summit at our airport, and continue to host several, large special events each year. We have recently expanded into aircraft painting, and plan on a full avionics shop next.
Why is involvement in organizations outside the workplace important?
I have been a member and attended the Annual Meeting of the Florida Aviation Trades Association for nearly 20 years. A few years into it, I was nominated to the Board of Directors, and learned a TON from the people I met and still call friends. When it came time to start my own company, each service or vendor I needed came from my contacts within the organization; what an incredible support network for an independent company! Once settled into Atlas, I rejoined the Board and am currently serving as President (we’ve changed our name to the Florida Aviation Business Association www.FABA.Aero). Meeting and communicating regularly with other industry professionals (ERAU has a seat on the Board) is an incredible resource for running a business.
What has been your greatest achievement in your career?
Having come from a background of larger, “chain” type FBOs, I was warned by many that you couldn’t make a living selling Avgas, and certainly not with a flight school or even maintenance. Many had the “gas and grass” mentality, and subbed out all the other services and just collected rent. We now have a proven business model of teaching people to fly, then supporting our other departments by servicing the airplanes the new pilots ultimately buy (some simply continue to rent from our fleet, of course). We have several tenants on their second or third aircraft upgrade since we taught them to fly. We have made the “against the odds” business model work by hiring exceptional people and cultivating a professional yet fun atmosphere at the airport.
What advice do you have for current and/or graduating students to make them competitive in today’s workplace?
We’ve always appreciated ERAU grads and have several working for us. More than education or experience (though both are factors), we look for a great ATTITUDE in an employee. You should be willing to learn as you go, have a smile on your face and have an honest desire to help customers. That will make both your career and the company for whom you work successful; I love what I do!
Posted by eraucso on October 27, 2014
By: Emily Ferraro
No one said it would be easy, right? All of the tailored resumes, cover letters, applications, and emails pile up and you quickly find yourself in a human resource nightmare if you’ve jumped in without preparing yourself for what to expect. But that doesn’t mean that you need to suffer silently feeling overwhelmed and/or wondering why you haven’t made any progress in your job search. This is a daunting process for anyone whether you are just starting your first employment journey or find yourself making a transition in your career. A lot of people express that applying for jobs is a full-time job but they leave it at that, without discussing positive ways to cope through good times and hard times when looking for employment.
Here are some “mind”ful tips in preparation for your impending job search:
- Set Reasonable Goals and Expectations
- Securing a job before graduation often means that you must do some soul searching. Employers want well rounded candidates who are able to make decisions, solve problems, and communicate their ideas. Try thinking about your job search as one big problem that needs solving, use your decision making skills to help you navigate and remember to clearly communicate your ideas along the way. The best way to start communicating clearly is by starting the conversation within yourself- be proactive and start to create goals and outline your job search. Stick to them without comparing yourself to your peers/colleagues. This is YOUR job search and you have unique qualities that can’t be compared to others. Goals can be as simple as setting a number of applications to complete within each week. Or choosing a day of the week to refresh and stay up-to-date on your follow-up communication. This will help reinforce your expectations for yourself and will help you from feeling overwhelmed.
- Find your outlet
- It’s easy to get distracted from doing what you enjoy when you are so worried about securing a job. It’s very important that you find something you love to do that helps you relieve stress. Remind yourself to take a break and go for a walk, or read a couple of chapters from your favorite book, maybe even watching your favorite movie at the end of the night or sneaking in a couple episodes of Game of Thrones. Whatever it is that you enjoy, this small treat should be your way of re-charging before you jump back into the process. Learning your personal coping method is very important so you do not start turning to bad habits when things get rough and ultimately risk putting off your goals.
- Turn to your mentor
- My most cherished advisor once said, “There is nothing lonelier than going through a job search alone” and he was right. Don’t ever let yourself feel like you are alone when there are so many people around you who can serve as a mentor. Focus on your network and find one or two mentors that you can turn to when you find the search is getting to you or when you need help solving problems and making decisions. A good mentor should be able to challenge and support you while giving feedback and advice that encourage you to move forward even when times are hard. Look to your existing network on-campus, in your community, and in friends who have already secured jobs. Your Career Services Program Managers are another great mentor network!
- Keep your head up
- It’s not always easy to stay positive when you feel like you’ve hit a wall in the job search. Especially when you haven’t heard back from companies or start feeling the pain of rejection. Remember to keep in touch with family and friends and tell people what you are going through, otherwise no one will know what you are going through. Lastly, keep these tips in mind and think of ways to recharge yourself when you aren’t feeling motivated. It’s normal to feel set-back but you have to get back up and try again.
Emily Ferraro serves as the Program Manager for undergraduate Aerospace Engineering students. She completed her Bachelor of Arts degree in International Studies as well as her Master of Education in Curriculum & Instruction specializing in College Student Affairs at the University of South Florida in Tampa, FL. Emily enjoys working with students on topics such as personal branding and social media and tailoring job search documents.
Posted by eraucso on September 25, 2014
Below is his first-hand experience at the Industry/Career Expo 2013 held in Daytona Beach, FL.
I walked into the 2013 Career Expo week not expecting much; little did I know that by the time that week ended I would have set up my future with the world’s largest leading business aviation company. I had prepared weeks in advance for the events to come that week. In order to properly prepare myself, I attended as many of the Career Services events as my schedule allowed. Getting to know the Career Services staff is very helpful in preparing for the Career Expo due to their wealth in knowledge of obtaining a job at the career expo. Luckily for me, I had Sandi Ohman and Lisa Kollar as my UNIV 101 professors during my first semester at Riddle, and I will never forget how they inspired me to work hard for my dreams and obtain a co-op.
My first introduction to Gulfstream came in the fall of 2011 when they came on campus for the 2011 Career Expo, I immediately fell in love with the company and after sitting through their information session I decided to go up and talk to the Campus Relations Consultant, Cassie Batayias. After talking for a few minutes she invited me to interview with her and her team the next day. Although I could not receive an offer since I had just started as a freshman, it was an opportunity for me to network with some professional engineers and get familiar with Gulfstream’s interviewing process. The following fall of 2012 I applied for the Co-Op position with Gulfstream, I attended the Meet and Greet event they held on campus but mostly kept to myself and then attended the information session. I interviewed the next day with two of Gulfstream’s engineers for the position. Unfortunately I did not get the position and I was heartbroken. Being rejected from your dream job hurts and I almost didn’t bother applying the next year. Fortunately I decided not to give up on my dreams and applied again for the position the following year. I attended the Meet and Greet event that Gulfstream held in the Fall of 2013 and this time I tried to talk to everyone from Gulfstream that I could. I believe it is important to show them your face and engage them in an intelligent conversation so they can put your face to your name later on when they’re deciding who gets the job. I then attended the information session and stayed after to talk to Mrs. Batayias to once again introduce myself and converse with her.
The next day was the interview and I made sure to dress my absolute best. It is crucial to come into the interview with plenty of resumes, a list of intelligent questions to ask the interviewers, a notepad, and a pen. To help myself stand out from the other students being interviewed, I brought thank you cards but did not fill them out till after the interview. After the interview was over, I sat down in a chair and wrote out my thank you cards, placing personal thoughts and ideas that stemmed from the interview. Make sure to thank the person for interviewing you and try to sell yourself in the card by repeating your strengths and what you can bring to the table for them. After finishing with the interview, it was time to wait. I attended the Industry/Career Ex[p the next day and went up to the Gulfstream booth to show my face one last time so that they could remember me, I talked to a few more people and left. After 3 of the longest weeks of my life, I was called by Mrs. Batayias with an offer to take my talents to Gulfstream. It was honestly one of the happiest moments of my life because with the Co-Op position there is a 95% chance of obtaining a full-time position with Gulfstream as soon as I graduate. Not only because of that but because of all the exciting work I will get to be doing here at Gulfstream.
Overall I recommend preparing weeks in advance before the career expo, and talking to and listening to what the career services staff has to say. It was Sandi Ohman’s idea to use the thank you cards and I honestly believe they played a big role in obtaining the position. The best thing you can do is to make yourself stand out from the rest of the competition by any means possible.
Posted by eraucso on September 22, 2014