First Impressions

By: Stephanie Rozboril

When meeting a recruiter or interviewer for the first time, your intial impression can really make an impact. First ImpressionSometimes before you even have an opportunity to speak, they are already beginning to assess you. There are several things to keep in mind to avoid sending the wrong message before your interview or opportunity even begins!

Appearance: Dress to impress! Make sure that your attire is professional, clean and wrinkle free, and appropriate in fit (nothing low cut or too small/big). They will notice more than what you’re wearing so ensure you look well groomed (hair and fingernails especially) and your breath is fresh. A smile and a poised approach will also help to show confidence.

Handshake: Nothing is worse than a limp lifeless handshake. Make sure you perfect yours ahead of time and have it be one that is strong and accompanied by direct eye contact and a smile.

Communication Style: If you are not excited about an opportunity with a company, the company won’t be excited about you. Make sure that you show interest in the discussion, ask questions, and remain confident and enthusiastic. Speak clearly and professionally, make eye contact, and try to mirror the body language and communication style of the recruiter or interviewer.

Resume: When applying online for a position, your resume and application are the only impression you are able to give. To ensure your success make sure that your resume has been tailored to the specific position you are applying for. You should also consider the value of having someone else look over the document to provide feedback and catch any grammatical errors. When filling out an online application be thorough, ensure you answer questions completely, and use your resume as a guide to help you.

The Career Services office at Embry-Riddle is here to help you perfect all of your first impression skills. Take advantage of the services we offer to help you prepare for success!  To learn more about making a first impression, please visit our website: http://www.careers.erau.edu

Stephanie Rozboril is new to the career services office and serves as the engineering program manager and also supports our homeland security, space physics, computer science, and computational mathematics students. She has been with Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University since 2012, where she worked in the Alumni Relations Office supporting future and current graduates. Stephanie enjoys working with students to help them achieve their professional goals and become successful in today’s competitive job market.

Resource Highlight: Professional Associations

By: Sandi Ohman

professional associationsMany professions have a professional association they can turn to for assistance with best practices, collaboration, tips & ideas, conferences and networking opportunities. Below are a few ways student, recent graduates, as well as experienced professionals would find membership in a professional association beneficial.

Students/Recent Graduates

For students, and recent graduates, being a member of such a group demonstrates to a prospective employer a true interest in wanting to be a part of a specific profession. Membership can also provide networking opportunities, which can lead to job opportunities. An opportunity to attend an association conference is an excellent way to meet other industry professionals. Participating in events held at association conferences can demonstrate knowledge, skills and educational experience to other attendees; for job seekers this could be especially beneficial.

Experienced Professionals

Most experienced professionals are involved in professional associations and know the benefits they offer. As mentioned above, networking, best practices, and attending professional conferences can only enhance the professionals’ career. Professional associations offer opportunities to research with other professionals, publish articles and learn about industry leading concepts and ideas, as well as leadership opportunities within these organizations. Networking with other professionals can lead to recruiting opportunities both personally and professionally.

Though professional association memberships can be expensive, student memberships are significantly more affordable. The resources available to both students and professionals can be significant and well worth the investment.

Some professional associations ERAU students and alumni in the aviation/aerospace industry belong to are:

Aircraft Owners and Pilots Association (AOPA)

Air Line Pilots Association (ALPA)

Air Traffic Control Association (ATCA)

The American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics (AIAA)

American Association of Airport Executives (AAAE)

American Society of Safety Engineers (ASSE)

American Meteorology Association (AMS)

Association for Unmanned Vehicle Systems International (AUVSI)

Human Factors and Ergonomic Society (HFES)

Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE)

International Society of Air Safety Investigators (ISASI)

National Business Aviation Association (NBAA)

National Society of Black Engineers (NSBE)

The Ninety-Nines

Organization of Black Aerospace Professionals (OBAP)

Society of Hispanic Professional Engineers (SHPE)

Society of Women Engineers (SWE)

Women in Aviation International (WAI)

Sandi Ohman is the Senior Program Manager in the Career Services Office at Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University.  She has been with the university for over 9 years and has advised students in most all degree areas while in Career Services.  Sandi brings additional experience having worked in the finance industry for over 6 years in her previous career.  She received her Bachelor of Science degree in Business Administration from the University of Florida, and her Master of Arts degree in Educational Leadership from the University of Central Florida.

Your First Day of Work Has Arrived

By Valerie Kielmovitch

first dayYou did it! After all of the waiting and applying, you nailed the interview and accepted your first full-time position! Your first day of work has finally arrived. But how do you prepare for this momentous occasion after all the years of schooling?

Below is a list of items to consider:

  • Dress Attire – It is always better to be overdressed for your first day of work than be underdressed. Remember, your dress will be making a first impression on all of your new colleagues.
  • Personal Documents – Typically, there will be a period of filling out paperwork to ensure you receive all the benefits of the position. Ensure you remember to bring identifying documents with you on your first day, such as driver’s license, social security card, green card, I-20, etc.
  • Be Prepared – Before you wake up for your first day, make sure you know actually where you will be going. Being on time and knowing the location for your position are crucial to starting off on the right foot.
  • Lunch – It never hurts to pack a few extra items for lunch in case the company doesn’t have a cafeteria or the culture does not permit leaving during the day. However, try to ask a colleague to lunch or ask what people typically do during their lunch hour.

Remember that everyone had a first day on the job once, so do not be afraid to ask questions. Don’t pressure yourself to master your new job in a day or even a week. The learning curve will take some time, so be patient with yourself. Go in with a positive attitude and be a strong professional!

Valerie Kielmovitch has been working as a Program Manager in the Career Services Office at Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University since 2010. She completed her undergraduate degree at the University of Central Florida and Master of Education specializing in Higher Education and Student Affairs at the University of South Carolina. Valerie has a diverse background in the field of higher education from residence life to career services.

Employer Advice Spotlight: Better to be Overdressed than Underdressed

By Joshua Pringle

Joshua Pringle is the Director of Marketing at CO2Meter, a leader in Carbon Dioxide metering, sensing, and detection. CO2Meter designs, manufactures and distributes industry leading devices to consumers and companies in diverse business segments. Mr. Pringle has put together a series of articles providing advice, from a company’s perspective, on interviewing. This post is the last one for the spring term.

InterviewDiversityThe reason something becomes a cliché is because it actually has truth to it. So when I say, “First impressions are everything,” I really do mean it. Especially when interviewing for an internship or job. When the interviewer opens the door to greet you for the first time, how you are dressed SCREAMS at them and sets the tone for the conversation you are about to have.

A few notes about dress requirements: Business Attire means a suit and tie (sport coat minimum), Business Casual means dressed nicely but no tie (sorry ladies), and in business circles, Casual means a polo or button shirt or blouse and nice dress pants and dress shoes (not flip flops and Hawaiian shirts).

Here are some important keys to your dress for the future.

1) Everyone, buy a business suit. A suit says “professional” unlike anything else. Men’s Warehouse, Jos. A. Bank, and Brooks Brothers all offer great suits at great prices for the gentlemen.
2) When wearing a tie, keep it tied. Do not wear a tie or your shirt undone. You are interviewing for a job/internship not modeling for GQ.
3) Leave excess jewelry/accessories at home. Think minimal. The cleaner your look, the better. Don’t wear a watch, so you aren’t tempted to check the time. While you are in the interview, there is not a single thing on the planet more important for that time period. Stay focused!
4) Don’t make the interview day the first time you are wearing your new suit. Try it on a few days ahead of time. The idea here is to get comfortable in it because nothing says “I’m nervous” more than someone who is clearly uncomfortable in their clothes.
5) Don’t ruin your outfit with dirty or poorly matched socks and shoes.
6) NO perfume or cologne. What if your interviewer had an ex-husband who wore Polo? Subconsciously she is going to be predisposed to not liking you.

But the best tip I can give you is this: it is far better to be overdressed than underdressed! You can always take off your tie to meet a situation, but unless you keep a spare tie in your car, it’s difficult to add a tie to your outfit. Be the best dressed person in the room. You will be noticed and thought of highly.

Unfortunately part of the interview process, and even the business process overall, is selling yourself. Most people are uncomfortable talking about themselves, what they’ve accomplished, or even what they want to do. Dressing professionally helps ease that “sales” process because, when you are dressed professionally, you are already viewed as a quality candidate.

What Do You Want To Do?

By Kristy Amburgey

what-do-you-want-to-be-when-you-grow-upI am sure we have all been asked the question, “What do you want to be when you grow up?” I have heard seasoned professionals, somewhat joking, ask themselves this same question.

Before starting a job search and before making any career changes, you, even as a seasoned professional, need to ask one very important question: what do you want to do?

Stepping into these ventures, like a new job or taking classes, takes time, money and effort on your part. To ensure you invest wisely in a new endeavor, carefully evaluate what it is you want to do and achieve.

Only when you honestly answer this question and devote the time it takes to obtain your goals can you start to work on creating a satisfying professional life.

Although you may not set professional satisfaction and happiness as top priorities in your life, you need to understand the difference between a successful career search and a successful job search. For a successful career search, you understand the types of responsibilities and goals you want to achieve in your work life, and you find a job that meets those goals. A successful job search means that you were offered a job and accepted it on terms upon which both you and the company agreed. Having a job does bring a certain amount of satisfaction like having an income, which can result in immediate happiness. But do your current short-term successes leave you feeling professionally wanting more? This questioning of your current situation may mean that you need to take a step back and evaluate what you truly want to do in your life and take the bold stand to do it.

Now, that common childhood question, “What do you want to do?” is a way that you can gauge your professional goals. If you are doing what gives you professional fulfillment, you hopefully have your answer to the question. If you envision yourself finding satisfaction and happiness in another situation, you want to find a better professional fit.

Kristy Amburgey is the Associate Director of Career Services – Daytona Beach campus and currently manages marketing and employer relations for the department. She has been with Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University for over 10 years.

Employer Advice Spotlight: Where in the World is Carmen Sandiego?

By Joshua Pringle

Joshua Pringle is the Director of Marketing at CO2Meter, a leader in Carbon Dioxide metering, sensing, and detection. CO2Meter designs, manufactures and distributes industry leading devices to consumers and companies in diverse business segments. Mr. Pringle has put together a series of articles providing advice, from a company’s perspective, on interviewing. The series will be added throughout the spring semester.

Where in the world is Carmen Sandiego?

Where in the world is Carmen Sandiego?

Do you remember the old computer game and TV show that taught geography through a fun, traveling secret agent persona? The agents would travel the globe learning about their destinations and travel routes in order to capture Carmen. The problem was that this series was produced in the late 1980s and early 1990s before MapQuest and Google Maps. The agents would have no problem catching Carmen today. And think of playing this game if you had Google glasses!

So let me put this gently – in today’s world with iPhones, Google Maps, Wi-Fi access all over and a million apps to help you get to where you are going…DON’T BE LATE FOR AN INTERVIEW!

Nothing says “throw my resume in the wastebasket” to an interviewer quicker than you being late. Being late to the interview for any reason demonstrates what you are going to be like as an employee: late, irresponsible, demanding, and generally a terrible employee. Showing up late for your interview or anything else is just disrespectful. I don’t know about you, but I’d be sure I was actually early for an interview.

Here are a few tips for being on time to your interview.

1) Don’t just map the location out on Google Maps or another app. That is not enough. What if the GPS is wrong? What if the company recently moved? What if there is an accident and the road you want to take is closed? If the company is local, drive the route the day before to know exactly where to be.
2) Leave 30 minutes earlier than you think you should. It is far better to sit in the parking lot reviewing your notes and qualifications than it is to be rushed because you’re late.
3) When you are late, you rush and make mistakes making the situation worse. Imagine being 15 minutes late for your interview and running into the building to save time? Now you are late and sweaty. Not a good start.
4) “Early IS on time”. Think about it for a second. It also means that, “on time = late and late = forgotten”.
5) No matter how early you are, do not go into the building/office more than 10 minutes early. You seem too eager.
6) Bring some cold water for your trip and turn on the AC. When most people are nervous, they perspire. Use at least these two tricks to help reduce your anxiety.
7) Get gas the day before. Having to get gas will put you behind schedule. And nobody wants to smell like gas when they walk into a room.

If something happens and even with all your pre-planning you are going to be late, call well before your interview time to give the interviewer notice. Leave a clear, concise message.

Part of the world outside the university setting is timeliness. You are expected to be places and do things on time, if not in advance. Show that you are prepared for that leap by being at your scheduled location prior to the time you were given. I promise you the interviewer will be putting a “bonus point” in your column while others are getting dinged.

And by the way…I don’t think the agents ever found Carmen. Maybe you will see her on your way to your interview if you aren’t running too late!

The Philly Cheese Steak Principle, Part Deux

by Kristy Amburgey

The "What Are You Reading?" Principle

The “What Are You Reading?” Principle

Several years ago, I wrote about the Philly Cheese Steak Principle, which I defined as a way for people to use friendly, light-hearted conversations or interactions to grow their professional or personal network and connections.

After some reflection, I now see the need to update the name of this idea to the Ouagadougou Principle. Or the Standing-in-line-at-Disney-asking-about-someone’s-hometown Principle. Or the Sharing Space on a Flight Principle. Or the I-wore-a-business-suit-while-traveling-so-people-gave-out-business cards Principle. The list could go on infinitely as so many people have amazing stories of connecting with others through random, unexpected interactions.

This collection of principle titles and stories further proves that connecting with a person can be effective when it is based on a commonality or on a shared experience. That common ground could be a job, a school, a unique pair of shoes or waiting in a long line together. The only way that the [insert your own term] Principle will work is if you take the first step and say something. Often it takes some courage to make a comment or give an observational opinion, but it is so important to take advantage of any opportunities presented to you. In encouraging you to take any and all chances, it is smart to have some situational awareness (e.g. keep in mind the tone of the event or poking fun at a complete stranger who may not appreciate it) and be genuine about wanting to interact with the person.

Hence forward, I want to name this concept the Your Personal Story Principle. We all can use our everyday experiences to establish new relationships with those around us, based on even the most unusual ways to meet (I am talking to you, Funny T-shirt Principle person).

Kristy Amburgey is the Associate Director of Career Services – Daytona Beach campus and currently manages marketing and employer relations for the department. She has been with Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University for over 10 years.

7 Rules for Your LinkedIn Profile Picture

By Emily Ferraro

Always add a professional photo to your LinkedIn profile

Always add a professional photo to your LinkedIn profile

Having an online brand can all be summed up in one picture.  How can you make sure that your picture sends the right message? Hopefully you’re beginning to think about how your professional brand is represented across different social media platforms. The LinkedIn profile picture is the essence of your professional brand. Here are 7 tips to consider when thinking about your image.

1.) First, Make Sure You Have One!

LinkedIn research shows that a page with a profile picture is seven times as likely to be viewed as a page without one.  When someone is looking over your page, they want to gain a connection just like a personal interaction. Having a  professional picture that follows these tips will immediately give them a stronger impression of who you are rather than a blank photo.

2.) No “Selfies” Please!

The self-portrait photo is the most popular style of professional profile pictures, but if you can help it, don’t take the picture by yourself. People viewing your profile will be able to tell if you took this on your laptop or extended your arm to get your whole face in the frame on your cell phone. LinkedIn is not the place for selfies. This does not mean that you must hire a professional photographer but ask a trusted friend or family member to use a high quality camera or phone to take your photo for you.

3.) Photo For One:

Make sure you are the only person in your photo: exclude any and all friends, family, spouses, and pets from the photo. Your LinkedIn profile picture should be focused on you and only you. Try to refrain from using a cropped image where someone has been cut out of the image. If you are serious about your job search and you can’t find a picture of just you, this is the perfect excuse to create a recent and professional image.

4.) Keep Current:

Use a recent photo of yourself. Your brand should be transparent and consistent. You do not want to be unrecognizable in person compared to your profile picture. If you look different than the picture you have posted online, it’s time to post a new one to reflect who you are in person.

5.) Dress To Impress:

Think about how you would dress for an interview or professional networking opportunity in person and dress that way for your profile picture. Remember your profile image should reflect who you are in person; this will help your brand remain professional and reliable.

6.) Be CLEAR:

­Refrain from using photos that are blurry, pixelated, shadowed, or out of focus. You don’t want to be too far away in the picture that you are unable to be identified. When someone reviews your page or sees your photo, nothing is more distracting than a blurry or low-quality image. You want to make the right first impression, and a clear professional quality image is the best indicator that you take your brand seriously.

7.) Look Forward to Your Future:

Your picture should represent you in the best way possible. Be charismatic and smile while looking forward at the camera. Try not to look too serious or stare blankly into the camera. The picture should be a clear picture of your face from the shoulders up. Refrain from using logo’s and designs in the picture.

Emily Ferraro is new to the Career Services Office at Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University and 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 to help them achieve their personal and professional career goals and specializes in topics such as personal branding and resume writing.

Professional Dress

By Emily Ferraro

When it comes to dressing professionally, there are basic guidelines in place for “what to wear” and “what not to wear,” but it’s not always easy to assert what is right for each and every person. Just like any other day, choosing what to wear is about personal style, comfort, and setting. When trying to figure out what to wear to an interview or how to build your professional wardrobe, it’s best to keep the basics in mind and then let your style be found in the details.

Below are some simple guidelines to follow when preparing for an interview, followed by tips on how to build a wardrobe for business casual settings both in the office as well conferences and events.

Interview Dress Tips:

men first

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Men

  • Always wear a suit (it’s best to be formal no matter what the level of interview)
  • Men can wear two-piece matching suits in conservative colors such as black, navy, dark grey (wool, wool-blend and other quality fibers are best); to make the best impression, tailor it to fit you properly
  • Men should wear long-sleeve shirts in basic colors such as white, light blue, or conservative patterns
  • Always tuck in shirt
  • Socks should be mid-calf length in a dark color
  • Always match your shoes to your belt
  • Invest in nice pair of dress shoes; laces or loafers are appropriate
  • Keep hair out of face, well groomed, shaved and clean
  • Do not wear a strong fragrance/cologne

women suit

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Women

  • Always wear a suit (it’s best to be formal no matter what the level of interview)
  • Women can wear skirt suits or pantsuits (black, navy, and grey are recommended)
  • Skirts should match blazer and should be no shorter than fingertip length when arms are down
  • Tops can be long-sleeve button-down, quality knit sweater, or shell under jacket (not see-through, and no cleavage)
  • Women should wear close-toed shoes (heels should stay under 3-4 inches)
  • Always match your shoes to your belt
  • Do not wear a strong fragrance/perfume
  • Make sure nails are well-groomed and, if painted, choose a light, neutral color
  • Keep hair out of face, well groomed and clean
  • Always tuck shirt into pants or skirt
  • Keep jewelry simple and minimal
  • Wear natural looking makeup (no bright lipsticks or smoky eyes)
  • Bag or briefcase should not be too large or bright/accessorized

Professional Dress Tips:

When it comes to creating your professional look, it’s recommended that you incorporate pieces that are versatile and can be worked into several different outfits. These tips are great for building a wardrobe that can be worn in any professional setting.

women, multi

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Women

  • Black dress pants, pencil skirt
  • One pair of black pumps/one pair of nude pumps (also try grey/navy)
  • One black, navy or neutral colored dress
  • Tailored blazer (recommend black or navy)
  • Dark wash denim jeans
  • Basic shells/camisoles
  • A few blouses that can be layered (basic colors and light patterns)
  • Some classic dress shirts
  • Cardigans for layering
  • Belts (black/brown)

men, multi

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Men

  • Formal basic suit
  • Casual blazers (khaki/navy/grey)
  • Dress shirts- standard button downs (basic colors, light patterns)
  • Oxford shirts
  • Light sweaters (browns/blues/greens)
  • Dark wash jeans
  • Natural colored chinos
  • Belts (black/brown)
  • Dress watch
  • Dress shoes (black and brown)
  • About 3 ties (matching colors in shirts)
  • Polo’s and basic T’s
  • Cuff links

What Not to Wear:

Lastly, always consider the fashion “don’ts” when putting together your outfits. Everyone has different tolerance levels for what they consider professional dress, so remember the basics and dress to your comfort level and personal style. Check out our Pinterest board on “What not to wear – Men and Women” for great visuals and advice on what’s a definite no-no in any professional setting.

what not to wear

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Emily Ferraro is new to the Career Services Office at Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University and 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 to help them achieve their personal and professional career goals and specializes in topics such as personal branding and resume writing.

Etiquette Tips for Dining with a Potential Employer

By Valerie Kielmovitch

dining“Take your elbows off the table!” “Don’t slouch!” “Stop playing with your food!”

These phrases are typically heard around the dinner tables of many households.  Children may listen to these and other rules but do not always follow them.  However, when it comes to the job/intern search, these etiquette rules are key to succeeding at a meal with a future employer.   A meal with an employer may occur at a conference or during an interview.  It is very important to follow standard etiquette during the meal.

Here are a few tips to keep in mind:

  • The meal is typically part of the interview, so stay on your ‘A game’ as far as listening to questions fully and giving thoughtful answers.
  • In most cases, the employer will pay for your meal, so this isn’t the time to order steak and lobster.  Be somewhat conservative in your meal choice, if there is an option, or try to emulate what the employer is having.  At the same time, do not assume the employer will be paying for the meal; still offer to contribute to the check.
  • In choosing a meal, be careful that it is something easy to eat in which you will not get messy and can still actively engage in conversation.  This may not be the best time to eat ribs or peel shrimp.
  • It is recommended that you do not consume alcohol in order to be alert throughout the meal.
  • Do not talk with food in your mouth.
  • Try not to wave your utensils around, if using your hands when talking.
  • Be conscious of how utensils are set up on the table.  Always use them going from the outside in towards your plate.
  • Place your napkin on your lap upon sitting down to the meal.  If you get up from the table, place the napkin on the chair.
  • If asked for the salt, still pass both the salt and pepper together.
  • When eating soup, move the spoon away from you in the bowl and do not slurp.  When finished with the soup, place the spoon on the saucer on which the soup bowl was brought.
  • If you are cutting meat, cut one piece at a time and place your knife on your plate when eating.
  • When you are finished with your meal, place your utensils horizontally across the plate at the 9 and 3 o’clock position to indicate you are finished.
  • Be very polite to the wait staff.

Following these simple tips will ensure you have a great meal and a stellar interview.

Valerie Kielmovitch has been working as a Program Manager in the Career Services Office at Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University since 2010.  She completed her undergraduate degree at the University of Central Florida and Master of Education specializing in Higher Education and Student Affairs at the University of South Carolina.  Valerie has a diverse background in the field of higher education from residence life to career services.

Additional information on informal and formal place settings is provided below.

Informal Place Setting

Informal Place Setting

Formal Place Setting

Formal Place Setting

%d bloggers like this: