Launch Your Career: Advice for New Grads


Alexis Garcia, Reporter

On Apr 23, Career Services at Texas A&M University – Corpus Christi hosted a “Launch Your Career: Advice for New Grads” presentation to help upcoming graduate students prepare for job hunting after graduation.

The presentation included a “Rock Your Profile” session with Reggie Hanson, a customer success manager from LinkedIn, to give students advice on how to handle their own LinkedIn accounts.

Hanson started off by saying you must have a professional mindset, leave your personal and quirky thoughts for Facebook and Instagram while only talking about your professional life on LinkedIn.

She went on to say first impressions are very important and companies can tell a lot about your personality based on how you present yourself through your profile. Include a nice headshot of yourself with a pleasing background photo.

As you create your resume be sure to detail your work experiences by giving examples of your previous work, adding photos, presentations, etc. as it gives off a dynamic appearance. It is also a good idea to add any volunteer experience.

Hanson also talked about how important it is to reach out to people and stay in contact with them through LinkedIn. This could range from alumni, co-workers, to friends and family. “Did you know 50%+ of new hires result from a personal connection,” Hanson stated.

The last part of the presentation included an employer panel with hiring managers. The managers included Yolanda Green Barnes, Senior Director of Business Engagement from NBC, Meloney Castro, HR Business Partner at GM Financial Servicing Center in San Antonio and Michelle Harris, a Recruiter at Southwest Research Institute in San Antonio. The hiring managers gave students advice for interviews and tips on what hiring managers look for in a potential new hire.

When asked what key aspects they look for in potential hires, Harris mentioned team working skills. “We look for individuals who are team players,” Harris said, “We look for individuals who are willing to ask questions, and we obviously look for individuals who have integrity.”

When discussing ways to prepare for an interview, Barnes mentioned the importance of research. Always research the company you are interviewing for, and if possible, look up the person interviewing you. Get to know them as well and it could help make you more comfortable during the interview process.

They also discussed what they do and don’t look for in a resume. “People put their full home address,” Castro said, “You don’t need to put your full home address, we need your contact methods via email and your telephone number.” Castro explained how it creates a bias for the recruiter as they begin to question whether you can be trusted with arriving to work without issues.

The session ended with students asking what they can do if they are not hiring right after graduation. “I began getting out of my comfort zone and introduced myself to everybody,” Castro said.

All three hiring managers agreed about the importance of networking and how staying in contact with different people, whether it be professionals at the company you want to work for or simply a friend, will benefit you in the long run.