Working Your Plan

Students kayaking in Lake Champlain

Dreading those summer “What are you going to do with your life?” conversations with relatives and friends?  Here’s your answer: “I’ve got a plan and I’m working it!”

The 4 Year Plan for Career Success is just that—a well-defined road map of action steps for your four years at UVM to help you engage in experiences to explore your interests and build the skills to be successful in your chosen work.

It’s a self-managed plan, so you can move at your own pace and check off the steps along the way. There are even samples for students in various majors. Continue reading

Utilize Staffing Agencies in Your Job Search: 5 Things You Need to Know

Spherion logo

Finding employment can be a daunting task. One important, but sometimes overlooked resource is reaching out to local staffing agencies.   To get you started, here are 5 things you should know:

#1) What Do Staffing Agencies Do?

Staffing Agencies are the matchmakers of the employment world.  They recruit on behalf of businesses to find talent.  And they work with candidates to match them up with opportunities based on their goals, needs, and skill sets.  These positions can be temporary, temporary to hire, or direct to hire.

#2) Why Do Businesses Utilize Staffing Agencies?

From the candidate perspective, the job application and hiring process can be long and involved, and it is just as long and involved for employers.  That’s where Staffing Agencies step in, handling the paperwork, screening, and onboarding process for businesses, and saving them time. Continue reading

Senior Series: Get Ready to Negotiate!

Career Center C logo with international currency symbols

Receiving an offer of employment can be very exciting.  You’ve worked hard, interviewed well, and jumped through several hiring hoops to beat out the competition.  But what if the salary offer seems too low?

The first thing to remember is that there is much more to compensation than salary.  Some companies pride themselves on a robust benefits package, with things like health insurance, 401(k) matching funds, paid time off, holidays, etc., all of which add up to extra (and sometimes hidden) compensation beyond just the rate of pay.  Make sure you take the value of the entire compensation package into consideration when evaluating your job offer, and know that some companies may be more willing or able to negotiate benefits than salary.  This could be especially true in organizations with limited financial resources.  Something as simple as a flexible work schedule may be tremendously valuable to you – perhaps more so than extra money – and might cost the company nothing. Continue reading

Am I Multiculturally Competent?

Painting of diverse people from behind their heads

Multicultural competence is not a box you can check- it is a journey that lasts throughout our lives to discover ways to engage with difference. Your gender, sexual orientation, background, heritage, or exposure to other cultures does not automatically make you competent.

So how do you become competent?

  1. Learn about yourself- Explore your own history, beliefs and value systems. This can help you see how you move in the world.
  2. Learn about different cultures- A great way to do this is to learn another language, travel, and connect with people that are different from you. There are huge amounts of resources that can help you learn more about people from different backgrounds.
  3. Interact with diverse groups- UVM has groups/organizations, events and presentations that will welcome you. In addition you can always volunteer or do an internship where you can work with people from different backgrounds.
  4. Attend diversity sessions offered at work or on campus

What are the challenges involved in striving toward multicultural competence?

Admitting your own prejudices can be difficult. When you have grown up surrounded by racism, sexism, homophobia, etc., you cannot escape it. Try to understand the roots of your biases. It is what we do with that knowledge and those feelings that are the keys to being a very effective in a global diverse community. Being multiculturally competent is a process not a destination.