Sept. 14th: College and Scholarship Search

Sept. 14th Assignment: College and Scholarship Search

I am a big fan of using on-line tools to search for colleges and scholarships. The College Board provides a wealth of information on-line, such as SAT and AP test preparation, and college, career, and scholarship searches. Try out its helpful filtering tool to search for colleges at:

https://bigfuture.collegeboard.org/college-search

I searched for universities that excel at International Business and Chinese in the southeast and mid-Atlantic regions of the United States and the search resulted in several exceptional choices, including:

Georgetown University

37th and O Streets, NW

Washington, DC 20057

www.georgetown.edu

University of Richmond

28 Westhampton Way

University of Richmond, VA 23173

www.richmond.edu

University of Virginia

P.O. Box 400160

Charlottesville, VA 22904

www.virginia.edu

The criteria that I used to evaluate colleges include: reputable rankings from business periodicals and associations, financial aid support, job placement after graduation, non-urban location, mid-size, and student feedback. National rankings by business periodicals usually include a number of factors, such as graduation rate, loan debt, and return on investment.

Both New York University and the University of Pennsylvania excel in my field of study, however, I don’t want to go to school in a big city. Although Georgetown is in an urban location, I am interested in this university because of its overall excellence and the potential for outstanding internships in the nation’s capital. Additional entrance requirements for Georgetown University and the University of Virginia include the completion of three SAT Subject Matter tests.

Of course, getting accepted by any of these prestigious universities is only the first step. Securing scholarships to help pay for college is critical. In my local area, the North Georgia Community Foundation is a central funding source for scholarships and the Kiwanis provide scholarships based on fine art, writing, and performing achievements. National scholarships include the Coca-Cola scholars and Prudential Spirit of Community.

Applying to colleges and waiting for acceptance letters and financial aid offers can be exciting and unnerving at the same time. Thankfully, on-line tools can make the process easier, especially tools from highly-regarded sources, such as the College Board.

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September 8 Assignment: Time Management

Everyone has twenty-four hours in a day. How you use those hours will reveal your priorities. Establishing priorities is an important factor in managing your time to complete those tasks that are the most important to you.

I struggle with setting and sticking to my priorities. It is easy to get pulled off track by a task that has a looming deadline, even if in the scheme of things, it is not that critical to my overall priorities.

It is crucial to manage my time wisely in my career field, so that my supervisor and co-workers know they can rely on me to complete work on time. Successful time management also requires good communication skills-letting people know if priorities have changed that will impact deadlines. Sometimes priorities can conflict and the best approach is to sort it out with your boss, so that everyone agrees on what work needs to be tackled first. Clear communication can save a lot of time.

August 31 Assignment Interviews

I just read a terrific post on Tim Elmore’s “Growing Leaders” blog entitled: “Advice to a Would-be Intern”. You can access the post at: http://growingleaders.com/blog/?s=Summer+interns .

In this post, Elmore advises employers and students to treat an internship as a 12-week interview. Students need to understand that they will continue to be evaluated during the internship to determine their potential for permanent employment. Likewise, students should evaluate their work environments and decide if these are the type of situations they would like for future jobs.

In addition, Elmore says, since many interns have minimal professional experience, his firm looks for interns with the right “attitude, rather than aptitude.” The qualities that demonstrate the right attitude to him are: teachability (hungry to learn), initiative (will look for what needs to be done), responsibility (will take care of their assignments), and high energy (passionate about the company’s work).

Elmore’s post is very applicable to my mentorship. I hope at the end of the year that I will have made such a good impression and contribution, that my mentor will be willing to be a referral for me. I plan to contact my future college’s Global Studies Center for a work-study job and a positive recommendation from my mentor would help secure a position.

There are a number of actions I can take to create a good impression. First of all, I want my mentor and co-workers to know that I am reliable. I will demonstrate this by showing up to work on time and doing what I say I’m going to do (such as completing tasks by or before deadlines). Also, I want to be known for high-quality results, so I will double check my work for accuracy. And generally, I want to be viewed as someone who is easy to work with and always willing to help out.

It is a slight attitude adjustment to view an internship as an interview. What if we take that adjustment one step further and look at our jobs as continuous interviews? To stay competitive, we should always look for ways to keep improving. We might as well get in the habit now!