Friday, November 20, 2015

Post from CDC Student Blogger, Matt!

      It is that time of year isn’t it? I am sure all of you are also in the midst of projects and research papers coming due, I know I sure am. This time of year can be stressful and our focus tends to narrow to dealing with the immediate issues (like those projects and papers I mentioned for example) and that’s ok. Its not hard to spare five or ten minutes here and there to help prepare yourself for the future even when all these big assignments come due.

Of course by all means prioritize the homework hahaha, but using a few minutes a week (not even every day, relax) for searching for potential careers or writing cover letters and improving your resume. I know that right now my schoolwork is keeping me really busy but I still find time to do some job searching here and there. I mean, it is better to do a little consistently than nothing at all. All the same hope everyone is staying warm and getting their homework done.

Till next time,


Wednesday, November 4, 2015

Matt Pierz, The End of the Semester Looms Near

Hello everyone,

I am still trying to wrap my head around how few weeks are left in this semester, but the research papers and other big assignments are a good indicator. This is indeed the time of year for the big papers, the research projects, ect ; so suffice to say that after I had finished my cover letter and sent my application to what amounts to a dream job for me, I am taking a week or so off of my job search process to make sure I am still keeping up with all my schoolwork. 

I mean what good are all the job applications in the world if they hinge on you having that degree at the end of the semester and you don’t get it. All the same, it seems to me that trying to maintain that balance of planning for school (to pass) and life after school can be a pretty daunting task, the only advice I can offer is not be afraid to take a step back and relax, for a day if need be (take a Saturday or something for yourself). Also, realize you are human, stress happens, never be afraid to ask for help if you need it not only from your friends/family, but also from all the services offered at WIU for both School (tutors) and life after school (Career Development Center) because that is what they are here for.

See you guys next time.

Wednesday, October 21, 2015

CDC Blogger, Matt Pierz, Applying for Jobs!

Hello again everyone,

Well we have now passed the halfway point of this semester and now graduation suddenly looks VERY close. Fortunately, all the preparation I have been doing up to this point is really coming through now. I am all set up on Linkedin, looking for (and finding) jobs that are not only interesting to me but in the area that I want to move to when I graduate, and my cover letters are nearly done for the applications to those jobs. 

I honestly don’t think I could have made it this far without the help of the people at the Career Development Center, now it is time for one last push then off into the real world I go, hopefully with a great job waiting for me when I get there. 

Wednesday, October 7, 2015

LinkedIn Works!! CDC Blogger, Matt Pierz

We’re making progress people!

After finishing my resume and making it look the best I can, it was time to move on to the next step, LinkedIn. I had heard of LinkedIn before but I had always thought it was some sort of business IM service where companies would have their employees sing up to “increase productivity” of some such, apparently I was wrong, and I couldn’t be happier. 

Setting myself up with a LinkedIn profile (which was not that hard) I was shown that the site had a ton of tools and services that I could utilize to help me find a job quicker and easier than throwing my resume out into the world like darts in the dark, hoping they find their target. My profile will of course need a few tweaks here and there, and a professional looking profile picture won’t hurt either, but I know that the people at the Career Development Center will be there to help me get my page on LinkedIn in tip-top shape.

As a final note, if my previous statements didn’t get the point across let me sum up my point, if you are looking for a job get on LinkedIn and set up a profile page, you will be glad you did.

See you guys next time!

Friday, September 25, 2015

Matt Pierz, Ready to Resume!

Well, at this point, I can happily say that my resume is, for all intents and purposes, ready to send out into the world. 

A big step for me to be sure, but it is just the start, and a start is better than sitting around hoping a job is going to fall into my lap. I can tell that this semester is going to have a lot of schoolwork that will pull my attention from the job search, but that is all the more reason to take as much time as I need to stay on track. To be honest, this is a particular point in the semester/the job search process is kind of a dead zone.

What I mean is this is, in a way, a kind of calm before the storm… If the storm is midterms and then graduation not too far after that. All the same, I just have to keep moving steadily along for the next… however many weeks are left in the semester.

Thursday, September 10, 2015

CDC Student Blogger, Matt Pierz - Resume Update

Well, I can definitely tell that school is back in session now.

 Right out of the gate, the homework and extra hours in the studio are eating up a lot of time, and I mean a LOT of time. It wouldn’t seem to help matters to look at the fact that we are only a few weeks in to the semester, buuuuut I’m sure the work load will balance itself out in time. I also noticed that the job search process stalled for a brief period, and to be honest, I was worried that I wouldn’t be able to work in the time to keep that proverbial train moving. Luckily, however, I found that it is much easier to maintain that forward momentum with smaller easier to manage “pushes” once or twice a week than to put it off until you feel so overwhelmed by the feeling that your behind on preparing to enter the real world that your classwork suffers and you actually end up causing your work in both areas (school and preparing for work after school) to decline.

 I had another meeting to go over and work on my resume. Going into the first meeting I had felt confident in what I had, but after quite a few suggestions were made I admit that I got a bit discouraged. I mean so much work out of the gate? This doesn’t bode well for the future blah blah blah. I made another appointment thinking that I was going to have to spend the whole time taking notes on how to fix my resume, turns out that was not the case. I was helped through step by step so even I could follow it, getting more work done on my resume in half an hour than I did the previous 4 days, now there are just a few more tweaks to make and then it is on to the next step….I don’t know what that is, but I do know that I have people there to help me. 

Monday, August 31, 2015

Say "Hello" to Matt Pierz, CDC Student Blogger for Fall 2015

This is all much harder than I anticipated. I admittedly have been in college a while, but graduation at the end of this semester starts to look less like an idea and more like a concrete reality. I find myself having to not only take a serious look at the world outside of college, but also I have to consider my place in it after graduation. I know where I want to move to, that much I have figured out, and while I thought it was difficult to gather the necessary information to find a place to live and so on I never really gave finding a job any serious thought, I guess I just assumed one would fall into my lap upon my arrival.

 Sadly, that is not the case and now I’m starting to realize just how easy by comparison all the “work” I did researching where I wanted to go really was not as hard as I believed it to be. You know, I’ll be the first to admit that I am a bit of an idealist, I think that there is a job out there that is not only waiting to hire me, but also one that fits all the criteria that I have in my head of what the perfect job for me is. On the other hand though I am a realist; as a realist I know that that job may not exist or the position is filled or even that I ( gasp ) may be in competition with others for that job. Whether or not that “dream job” exists is a moot point though. GETTING the first job, that’s the starting point and if I was going to even make it that far I was going to have to put forth some (actually quite a lot) of effort.

I had started my job search on my own, just me and my trusty pal Google, looking at companies that again, in my idealistic mind, would have the perfect job for me just sitting there in the careers section of their websites, and of course these are only the companies I could think of, and I ran out of places to look pretty quick. Then I thought about looking at those job listing sites that you used to see ads for on TV, and that had me feeling even more discouraged; no matter how general I seemed to make my searches all that came up were jobs that were either nothing close to what I was looking for or a job that required more years of experience in various fields than I had spent living on this planet. I had stared to get tired of looking, and as much as I had wanted to ask my friends and family for help, and I did initially, all that I seemed to get out of them were fortune cookie style non-answers like “just keep at it and you will find what you’re looking for” and other such advice-isms. 

I was also told that at the end of the day that this was experience that I need to get to prepare me for life after college, and as much as I wanted to treat this as the kind of advice-isms that I had already mentioned I had to admit that they were right, even though I wished it wasn’t the case. I realized that I was going to have to do this on my own but that didn’t mean I could have someone point me in the right direction, and then immediately after that thought I realized that I was going to have to rework my resume a bit (turned out to be A LOT more than a bit but that’s neither here nor there). I had known the Career Center existed, I just never felt I had the need to go there, at least until now that is, and so I decided to make an appointment to have my resume looked over. Turns out as I said it needed a lot of work, but at least I’m on the right track, and once that’s taken care of I can really buckle down with confidence to find that job.

Matt is an art major at WIU and is graduating this December. Keep watch for more updates from Matt this semester as he searches for a job!