Just Breathe!

29 04 2010

Jessie Tadder, UWO Journalism studentBy Jessie Tadder

Interviewing for a potential job or internship can seem like the scariest event of your life. But I learned while preparing and reflecting on a recent internship interview that it doesn’t have to be.

Although preparation is key to any interview, I learned that just breathing helps. It may sound obvious, but for those of us who are in panic mode trying to find some summer work may forget to do this important task.

Along with breathing, knowing aspects about yourself and the company you’re applying at will help make you more confident and therefore less nervous. Don’t cut corners.

On April 28 I interviewed at Oshkosh’s Business Success Center with Amanda Stobb, the HR intern. Afterward, Amanda critiqued how my interview went and gave me some valuable tips that I’d like to share with you.

  • Be ready to discuss your strengths, weaknesses, challenges, and accomplishments for almost any interview you go to. Don’t assume these questions are too “obvious.”
  • If it helps, take notes during the interview so you can remember specific questions you have about the company. If you feel uncomfortable taking notes, ask the interviewer ahead of time. You should always come prepared with questions about the company.
  • Use the STAR method to answer questions specifically.
    Situation: Where/when was this?
    Task: What did you have to do?
    Action: Specifically what action did you take to accomplish this?
    Results: End with a positive outcome.
  • It’s normal to be nervous. Nervous about meeting new people, saying the wrong thing or going to a new area? Relax and leave those nerves at the door. Nervous because you aren’t totally confident that you are qualified? Take steps beforehand to make sure you know yourself and the company as completely as you possibly can.
  • Breathe!

23 Interview Tips for Journalism Students

27 04 2010

On April 14, students in the internship and reporting classes participated in the spring mock interviews. Employers in news/editorial, advertising, public relations and photography came to UW Oshkosh to meet with students and provide valuable feedback.

So, did the students emerge with new techniques and insight for success? Absolutely. The following are 23 of the takeaways from this spring’s mock interviews: Read the rest of this entry »

Creative Honcho: Network + Get Portfolio Reviewed = Job*

20 04 2010

Eric Schadrie (left) and RubberChicken (right) of Bay Tek Games speak to the Principles of Advertising class about importance of networking.

By Tom Hanaway (@tomhanaway)

The creative honcho of Bay Tek Games visited Principles of Advertising and stressed the importance of networking in the journalism field.

When Eric Schadrie first walked into Journalism 250, most students were taken aback. Schadrie greeted the class with a rubber chicken in his hand. He explained how sometimes he tends to ramble, and if he talked too much a student should squeeze the rubber chicken as a sign that he should move onto the next topic.

However, no one sounded the rubber chicken alarm and Schadrie was able to give the class a lot of valuable advice.

The biggest point that Schadrie made was how vital networking is for advertisers and journalists. He explained that almost every job he received after college was a position he heard about from a friend or colleague. Schadrie showed the class an intricate web, which visually represented how he managed to go from a graphic designer at the University of Wisconsin Stevens Point, to a senior designer at the Green Bay Area Chamber of Commerce, to an art director at Infusion (now Imaginasium), to his current position as creative honcho at Bay Tek Games

Schadrie has a job that some people only dream of having. He creates games for a living for businesses like Chuck E. Cheese’s and Dave & Buster’s. He said that because of his good connections with other journalists he was able to land this dream job.

Schadrie is also a member of the Fox River Ad Club, a local branch of the American Advertising Federation. The Fox River Ad Club is currently hosting Student vs. World, an event where students can attend and have their portfolios critiqued by professionals. Interested students have until noon on Wednesday, April 21 to register. Schadrie said that these kinds of critiques can be invaluable to one’s career and encourages any students to attend.

For more information about Student vs. World, click here.


Calling All Twitter Reporters in Ad Class

16 04 2010

#UWOad students discuss Twitter Reporting

Twitter reporters will make their debut on Tuesday in Principles of Advertising.

Students will use their laptops or mobile phones to tweet during class. A Twitter hashtag, #UWOad, will show real-time discussion on a screen next to the projection of class slides. The discussion extends outside of the classroom via Twitter about advertising topics, particularly related to new media, as well.

“Media professionals and a growing mainstream are rapidly using Twitter for many types of communication,” Professor Sara Steffes Hansen said. “Our students can choose to be a Twitter reporter in class as a way to get familiar with this tool and its role in strategic communication. Students will learn how Twitter works through instruction and interaction with peers regarding advertising, as well as public relations and news. It’s already a class that likes to discuss advertising topics, and Twitter will be another way to broaden discussion and build community.”

Professionals who participated in mock interviews of UWO Journalism students this week mentioned the importance of students developing social media skills. Further, these professionals in news, advertising and public relations said it was important to understand how social media fits in with other communication tools and strategies.

Several students in the class have signed up to be Twitter reporters, but all students will be able to tweet if they choose. Earlier in the semester, the class participated in a tutorial with the Journalism Department’s Social Media Intern Melanie Stepanek, including lab time to set up a Twitter account. Twitter also has been a part of class discussion.

Set your Twitter search to #UWOad.

6 Tips to Boost Personal SEO

15 04 2010

Google Search Results for Melanie Stepanek

By Melanie Stepanek (@shmelanie)

While job searching itself isn’t a calculated science, elements of it certainly are. Today I’d like to focus on the highly logical and essential skill known as “Personal Search Engine Optimization,” or “Personal SEO.”

Since I’m being logical, here is an established fact: the transitive property of geometry says that, “if a = b and b = c, then a = c.”

If you are looking for a job online and your employers are looking for you online, then you have to be looking for yourself online.

As a Journalism student, I’m not entirely concerned if my theorem lines up right with Mr. Euclid’s theorem, but the point is this: you should be very, very concerned about what shows up in a search for yourself online. According to Big Shoes Network, a job search site for the marketing industry, more than 70 percent of hiring decision-makers are looking you up online. With companies stepping up Web efforts, this number will only continue to increase.

So, take a moment. Google yourself. Bing yourself. Do what you need to do. What do you see?

We’ve all been through the “clean up your online act” more times than I care to count, so I’m not going to bore you; rather, I’m going to aim my preachiness at those of you who return from this search empty-handed.

True, you don’t have to worry about alcoholic pictures or unfortunate public rants. No, no. You just look like a social hermit. In an age where everyone, even the Pope, is online, you have to have SOMETHING come up or you risk looking ignorant.

SEO is a practice heavily employed by businesses to achieve top “organic” search results (essentially, the top results that aren’t paid). While you may not be a business, you are still selling yourself, so you need to nurture your own SEO.

Without getting into the nitty gritty of how SEO works, here are some tried-and-true tips to optimize your online presence and showcase your industry know-how.

  1. Make your Facebook searchable and sign up for Twitter and LinkedIn accounts. This is an absolute staple and should be done regardless of SEO impact.
  2. Create your own blog or write a post for one. (hint hint hint) You can piggy-back the higher traffic of community blogs to get your own name out.
  3. Comment on industry-specific blogs using your real name. No anonymous.
  4. Experiment with other forms of social media, such as forums, social bookmarking sites and YouTube/Flickr. Create all accounts with your real name.
  5. Create your own online portfolio or Web site using Weebly.com or Folio 21. Use your name. (Have I said that enough yet?)
  6. Get engaged online. Network. Communicate with others. You will show up on their pages as well as your own.

These are just a few ideas. Anyone else have any thoughts to add?

Also: students, if you’d like an investigator to stalk look you up online to find out what employers see when they search you, let us know in a DM on Twitter (@UWOshJournalism) or e-mail uwoshjournalism@gmail.com. We’d be happy to help.

*Note: Please make sure not to reveal any sensitive information, such as your home address. (Use common sense.) The Internet is getting increasingly transparent, but you should still maintain some level of privacy.*

To Tweet or Not to Tweet? It’s not even a question.

14 04 2010

By Kelly Engebretson (@misskellymae)

I never imagined that I would be part of the blogosphere. Or should I say, I never thought I would be writing for a blog… or is the correct term blogging?

Well, either way here I am, attempting to make my mark in the world of social media. And let me tell you, it is scary. I am trying to figure out how I got here. In the last week I have gotten a LinkedIn account, tweeted, retweeted, followed, been followed, invited guests, started a Weebly Web site and now I am blogging. Frankly, it’s unbelievable.

Although most of you probably find it hard to believe that I waited until the last semester of my senior year to reap the benefits of these marvelous technologies, it’s the truth. Nonetheless, I am here. I’m ready to reap.

With a lot of coercion from my friends and a little nudge from my professor I reluctantly opened a Twitter account and before I realized it was happening, I was addicted.

I used to think Twitter was just a place for Paris Hilton to tell me about the sweater she bought her dog or to hear that Miley Cyrus painted her toenails black. I had no idea that it could connect me to classmates, potential employers, professionals in my field, causes I believe in and endless opportunities for networking.

As the second half of my final semester flies by, thoughts of graduation, the job market, my October wedding and a move to Orange County, Calif., have sent me into a bit of a frenzy. With so many unknowns it’s hard to know where to start. Then, I got a tip from a trusted professor encouraging me to put my newfound love for Tweeting to good use.

After a little pep talk I hit the ground running and within minutes I was enamored with Be Inspired Public Relations: The Wedding Specialists located in Los Angeles. I quickly became a follower of weddingPR and in no time was finding other local vendors and event planning companies that I could see myself working for.

I am far from being a Twitter expert (I am barely a novice), but I can already see the benefits of keeping up with technology. Almost every Web site I have visited since my new approach to job hunting has featured a link to the company’s Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn account.

That is when it dawned on me. My future employer is going to expect me to know how to update, manage and communicate through social media. So, I suppose my last five weeks will be a little busier than expected, but at least I’ll be productive.

Classroom Update: Strategic Campaigns in Advertising

13 04 2010

By Lisa Wilke (@LisaWilke)

Lisa WilkeGreetings from the Strategic Campaigns in Advertising class!

This year our client is the Grand Opera House in Oshkosh, Wis. We are working on creating an advertising campaign for its re-opening in fall 2010. We have been working hard over the course of the semester, but the bulk of our work is yet to come. Even though we’re not at our busiest, we are already meeting outside of scheduled class time as a group to work on our project.  Our presentation is May 13, 2010 from 6-9 p.m. and it will be given in one of the Reeve ballrooms.

This class has given us the opportunity to develop a marketing and creative strategy. Eric Schadrie from Bay Tek Games will be joining our class as a guest speaker to work with the creative team, copywriters and account managers. This is a great chance for us to discuss our creative expression ideas and we are excited to gain his insight and constructive feedback.

Currently, one section of our group is working on putting together target audience profiles. We are going to tackle our communications plan and create phases for the campaign next. The graphic designers are continuing to work on the plans book. We have developed a calendar of deadlines which can be viewed in Clow 148.

We have high hopes for our campaign that it will be fun and effective. Stay tuned for more of what’s happening!