Spice Up Your LinkedIn Profile

20 11 2013

By: Andrea Larson (@andrea_larson_)

Do you have a LinkedIn profile and need help getting it noticed? Have you not set up an account because you don’t know where to begin? Don’t be intimidated by LinkedIn. It is an effective tool for any future or seasoned professional, in any type of major.

So what is LinkedIn exactly? LinkedIn is a professional social network site that connects more than 225 million professionals. Use it as a source to find a summer internship or job, or network with peers and potential employers. I didn’t know how valuable LinkedIn was until I attended a LinkedIn workshop on campus Nov. 8.

University.linkedin.com, was the outline for the workshop, and is the go-to resource when learning how to use LinkedIn. There you will find a variety of helpful articles, videos, webcasts and more. I learned that the first two steps toward getting noticed is creating a marketable profile and using networking skills.

Creating a marketable profile:

  1. The first thing someone sees on your profile is the headline, which creates a first impression. The headline includes a photo of yourself and is important to consider when creating your profile. Pick a photo that is professional and high quality. Avoid having other people in the frame of the photo. If you don’t have any professional photos, have someone take one for you at a photo studio or at home. Make sure the photo is not busy and that you are wearing business attire. Next is your headline. You want it to sound like an elevator pitch – short and to the point. Let people know who you are and what you want to do. Do not make it too personal or over the top.
  2. Think of the summary as being the first couple paragraphs of a cover letter – be concise and confident. You will want to include relevant work, internships, involvement, volunteer work, extracurricular activities, goals and your education. Then, list your specific jobs that relate to those career goals. Be clear about the tasks you performed at those jobs; explain what you learned and what you took away from the experiences. Sell your skills and be proud. You will want these to be written in bullet points so it is easier to read for someone scanning your profile. If you do not have any work-related experience, you can talk about certain projects you’ve been a part of or certain courses you have taken. Do not down play your experiences, you likely have more than you think.
  3. Skills and experience include tasks or applications that you have learned and excelled at. They provide specifics that employers would be searching for in an employee. Ask yourself, “what are my best qualities I could bring to a job?” – then include them. What is unique about this section is that peers and past employers can endorse you as well.
  4. There are additional features you may not know LinkedIn has that make it so valuable. You can include organizations you are involved with or have been part of, and awards and recognitions you have received (e.g. scholarships, deans’ list or leadership awards for clubs). You also can follow interest groups and organizations to get updates on event announcements, when they have job postings or other relevant information. Comment on their profiles and like the information they send out – this will help raise interest and get you noticed. Take your own initiative to post articles, or add links to your blog, personal websites and social media pages. The more complete your profile, the higher you will appear in searches by prospective employers, and the better chances of getting hired.

Start networking:

Networking begins by identifying the people you are closest with, like friends and family. Connect with them, and then think about others you can connect with such as teachers, supervisors, co-workers, alumni, etc. Once you start making connections, you will become closer to connecting with people in the field of your dream job. Have past employers write a job referral or recommendation right on your profile. This allows prospective recruiters to see how others evaluate your performance. LinkedIn also offers an advanced job search engine that allows you to stay updated on new jobs that are available. Start leveraging your connections!

When sending a request, add a friendly note of how you know each other, what you have in common or where you might have met. A good idea to remember is to send a request to someone who has interviewed you for a position, thanking them for their time and consideration.

We ended the workshop with the important note that it is crucial to update your profile as often as you can. Let the world know who you are and your accomplishments, and become one step closer to getting hired.

This video came from University.LinkedIn.com, click here to check out more!


PRSSA Students Explore Philadelphia At National Conference

17 11 2013

By: Ashley Whaples (@awhap_7)

Seven students from UW Oshkosh PRSSA attended the National Conference in Philadelphia where networking opportunities, city adventures and well-deserved awards were in store during the five-day trip.

PRSSA National Conference allows students from all over the country to particpate in building their networks with professionals while attending workshops and chapter development sessions. This year it was held Oct. 25-29 in downtown Philadelphia. While each day had several workshops, here are a few highlights.

The event kicked off Saturday morning with the keynote address from General Motors Company Director of Social Media and Digital Communications Mary Henige. We heard Henige speak on the importance of “building your network,” and how to be a continual learner. With her expertise of 27 years at GMC, she answered tweets from PRSSA members in the audience.

Following the keynote, a few of us attended the Fashion, Arts, Music and Entertainment (F.A.M.E) workshop. Nicole Garner, who is the founder of The Garner Circle, spoke on the importance of carrying out the public relations four-step process when conducting a campaign. Her energy kept the audience wanting to learn more about her successes and tips on working at an agency.

On Sunday, we took a two-hour drive into the city that never sleeps—NYC. Once we arrived, we headed for Times Square, then hit up Chinatown and Ground Zero. It was incredible to see the amount of lights, tourists, building structures and life the city had. To my surprise, in a city where I thought I’d feel so small, I actually felt important, like I had a purpose when I walked those streets. We soaked in all that NYC had to offer before heading back to Philadelphia for another day of networking.


The next day we were able to meet with people from corporations and agencies from around the nation to learn about potential opportunities. Each place had its own table, which made it easy to share resumes with businesses and talk with employers.

Next, we attended the “Juggling: Life at an Agency” workshop with three PRSA professionals including Joe Clarkson from Taylor Strategy, Jessica Noonan from Burson-Marsteller and Nick Lucido from Edelman Digital. Each spoke of their experiences and explained the multiple responsibilities and time that go into working at an agency and what it takes in this industry to be successful. The panel opened it up to the audience for questions, as well as advised us to make sure we follow up with them.

During the ceremony and dinner, it was announced that UW Oshkosh took honorable mention for NODAC and won the Teahan Chapter Development award, the only school to receive two awards. Chapter President Hilary Stoeberl said she was thrilled when they announced the chapter’s name. “It was a real honor and privilege to receive such a competitive, recognized award,” Stoeberl said. “To know all of our time, effort and hard work paid off is the most amazing feeling.”


While most of the workshops took up our days, we were able to explore Philadelphia and what it had to offer. We were able to eat the infamous philly cheese-steak, and indulge at dinner spots like the Hardrock Cafe and Raw, a seafood restaurant just blocks from our hotel. We made sure to see the “Love” sign, as well as the historic liberty bell before leaving Philadelphia.

National Conference proved to be an amazing experience packed with memories that I, as well as my classmates, can build on in the future. The experience allowed us to truly learn what this PR life is all about.


Read more of Ashley’s blog posts on her site, Keep Smiling Beautiful Girl.

DMA Conference in Chicago

15 11 2013

By: Kaila Kissinger (@KailaKissinger)

Journalism and Business students recently attended the Direct Marketing Association Conference in Chicago. The conference draws professionals from around the world to discuss and learn about topics on data-driven marketing. Over the four-day conference, there were various speakers, information sessions, and exhibits on the trade show floor for people to attend. UWO’s own Dr. Hansen was chosen to present her research on small to mid-sized business social media usage.

Students attended the Student Career Forum put on by Marketing EDGE. The student forum included a panel of professionals who were there to answer questions and provide insight into the marketing and advertising industry. The panelists included:

The keynote speaker for the student forum was Craig Wood of The Futures Company. He had many helpful insights and focused on Mythbusters: Marketing Edition. He debunked the following myths about what people say about entering into a career after college and the reality.

The Myth: There is only one way to prepare for your career.

Reality: There is only one way to prepare yourself for your future. YOUR way.

The Myth: Your first job matters.

Reality: People in the millennial generation don’t define themselves by their jobs like past generations have. Your first job doesn’t matter as much as your experiences do.

The Myth: Your first boss will understand you.

Reality: Your boss is most likely going to be older than you are. With all of the differences between generations, some things are different.

The Myth: It’s not what you know, but who you know.

Reality: This may have been true in the past, but now it is a combination of both. Of course, the connections you make with people are valuable when looking for a job, but employers are now looking more closely at the skill sets you have.

The DMA conference was a great experience for Journalism and Business majors to interact and see how their fields intersect. It was also a great way to network with professionals in the industry.

UWO at DMA Conference Chicago 2013

Student Reporters Complete Vol. 3 of War: Through Their Eyes

2 11 2013

By: Andrea Larson (@andrea_larson_)
Cover Image for Wayne_finalWarriors & Students at the University of Wisconsin Oshkosh, is the third of the War: Through Their Eyes series that first started in 2009. Ten UW Oshkosh students are sharing their heroic stories and experiences of being at war.

Journalism students who wrote War: Through Their Eyes have worked hard to make a 100-page book, 300 online journal entries and 30 audio podcasts that highlight veteran war stories. The student reporters also wrote 1,000-word first-person essays giving readers the story behind the story. The students were taught to write the stories so the reader feels connected, which allows them to view war in a different light. Highlights of the students’ work will be shown at 5:30 p.m. on Friday, Nov. 8 in Reeve Union Ballroom.

The hour-long event will include short opening statements and a multimedia presentation. The Warriors & Students photo exhibit includes war-time photos along with personal photos of the veterans. Photos from the first and second series of War: Through Their Eyes projects also will be included in the exhibit.

The project is produced by UW Oshkosh Instructor Grace Lim, who has led this team of students through the entire process. “This is the third project and I am still humbled by the stories that the veterans have shared with me and my students. I have been moved to tears after hearing some of the stories,” Lim said.

Lim explained how students may see impacts from the stories of their peers who served in war. “I want them to know that meaningful stories about war are right next to them, in their classrooms,” Lim said. “I want them to remember that they are still living in a country during a time of war. It’s easy to forget that when we’re all worried about the Packers season or how we’re going to live without Breaking Bad.”

One of the student reporters, Morgan Counts, expressed her experience and thoughts on getting to know one of the veterans. “I am truly honored to have the experience to write for War: Through Their Eyes,” Counts said. “I enjoyed every step of the process, whether it was interviewing veterans, putting together podcasts or writing the stories. These student-veterans have such incredible stories that they would be too humble to share otherwise. As a journalist, I am honored to have the opportunity to tell such deserving stories.”

Counts described her experience interviewing Mark Maurer, a member of the National Guard, who toured in Iraq for one year. “Mark volunteered for deployment, which was one of the most intriguing things I learned through this process,” she said. “I had never met or heard of someone who volunteered for deployment, and it opened my eyes to how much all of these men and women in the military love what they do and are truly passionate about it.”

A limited number of books will be sold at the event for $10. All proceeds will go to the Student Multimedia Projects Fund that helps offset the costs of projects like the War: Through Their Eyes series. For more informations about the series click here.