Properly Honed Job-Hunting Strategies Pay Off
By Tommy Patterson, MSFS 2012
As any second-year MSFS student could tell you, job hunting is stressful. It requires job search skills, adequate preparation and determination. These are the lessons that MSFS Associate Director Eleanor Monte-Jones, who works closely with second-year students to enhance their job-search strategies, offers to those who seek her advice.
What habits must students develop? For one, they must learn the value of networking. Armed with an extensive alumni roster, an electronic job search engine, and fantastic contacts in the business and government communities, the MSFS program can put these networking tools at their disposal. However, as Eleanor emphasizes, the benefits of using these tools will only accrue to students with the drive to use them. Students must also hone their application skills by frequently applying for positions. It’s good practice and allows students to figure out what approaches work for them.
Eleanor also stresses preparation. She offers advice on how best to write resumes and cover letters and approach alumni. This is very important, because a good first impression can make the difference between a job offer and a rejection letter.
Her advice has already paid off for many MSFS students. For example, Anthony Gao found a position as a Business Analyst at the Shanghai office of a multinational consulting firm. Through one of his fellow students, Anthony found a contact in the company who was able to advise him on how to apply – advice that, mixed with Eleanor’s encouragement, helped him land the job.
Jill Johnson was also pleased with her success. She was searching for jobs in her home-state of Minnesota. Eleanor suggested she broaden her search to include the alumni network of her undergraduate institution as well as that of MSFS. The strategy paid off, with Jill finding a sourcing position at Target.
“Everyone wants something different,” says Eleanor, “which makes advising fun. I love what I do because I get to work with both alumni and students, and make a difference in people’s lives.”
Eleanor Monte Jones, Associate Director