Tagged: job search

Looking For A Job? Low GPA? Try This

From the National Association of Colleges and Employers

Emmit from ITESM asked:

“At the beginning of my studies I had some personal problems that affected my performance, at the end I did very good on my courses but I have a bad GPA. How should I handle this situation on an interview?”

Hello Emmit. I am sure many other students can relate to your challenge of having a personal issue that affected their grades in college. You may be surprised to know that you are not alone and also relieved to hear that having a low GPA is not the end of the world for your job search.

According to a Fall 2016 National College Health Assessment, 50% of undergraduate students and close to 40% of graduate students in U.S. colleges found it traumatic or very difficult to handle academics in the past year. Many students have difficulty adjusting to college academic work and sometimes have added personal stresses

How Do I Find Employers that Don’t Screen for GPA When Hiring?

Although 70% of larger companies often screen for GPA when hiring (according to the National Association of Colleges and Employers Job Outlook 2017 Report) the good news is that many smaller employers do not screen for GPA when hiring. How do you find thITESM, ese employers?

  • Look at job postings to see what the application requires. If the application form requires a GPA or transcripts, that may be an indication that GPA matters (not necessarily in all cases).
  • Create a list of employers of interest and check in with your career service office at Instituto Tecnologico y de Estudios Superiores (ITESM) to see which ones may not require a high GPA. Having worked in a college career service office for over 10 years, I had close relationships with many of the employers and their hiring requirements.
  • Conduct informational interviews (brief 20-30 minute conversations with people who work at companies that interest you) and ask them how important was GPA in the application and interview process.

If I am Required to Disclose My GPA in My Application, What Can I Do to Offset This?

Show that you were balancing multiple activities outside of coursework. If you worked in addition to taking classes, specify how many hours/ week you were working. If you served as a leader of a student organization, be sure to include these additional activities and highlight any achievements on your resume. Relevant experience in your field can often be more important than a high GPA. Be sure to highlight any internships, relevant coursework, academic projects and volunteer work that may demonstrate relevant skills in your field.

If I Do Get Asked About My GPA During an Interview, What Should I Say?

While it is unlikely that you will get asked to explain your GPA in an interview (especially if your GPA is not required for your application), it could happen. Think about what happened and how you can frame it into a positive story. Leave out any deeply personal issues that may be awkward and hard to explain or that might raise a red flag.

As a hypothetical example, you might say that your family’s financial circumstances changed and you ended up having to work two jobs while taking a full load of classes to help cover your tuition and that your grades suffered. Be sure to add that you were able to work hard and pick your grades back up in your final year. Employers like to hear that you can bounce back from adversity.

Best of luck to you with your job search Emmit!


There are many problems that we can solve together!   stephanie@accessguidance.com or 610-212-6679


Hashtags Job Hunters Need To Know

15 Great Twitter Hashtags to Secure Your Dream Job

by Kate Jones | Aug 17, 2017 | Social Media Job Seeking |Career Enlightenment

Hashtags to find an employer:

  1. #hiring: Unsurprisingly, the number one hashtag hiring managers use.
  2. #joblisting: This one is pretty much guaranteed to take you straight to a role specification.
  3. #tweetmyjobs: This has been tagged nearly a million times so it’s worth including in your search.
  4. #ukjobs: If you’re looking for something UK based this will take you straight to the goods. You can also change it up with #*yourcity*jobs to get super specific.
  5. #graduate: If you’re fresh out of university, use this hashtag to find graduate positions.

Hashtags to let employers know you’re looking:

  1. #hireme: Get straight to the point – you’re on the lookout!
  2. #resume: Twice as popular as #CV, this is the one to use if you’re sharing your resume online.
  3. #MBA: If you have an MBA, let potential employers know about your impressive educational background.
  4. #HR: This hashtag makes your post visible to anyone searching in the HR thread.
  5. #careerchange: Great if you’re looking to take your career in a new direction.

Industry specific hashtags:

  1. #salesjobs: This popular hashtag will take you straight to sales jobs listings.
  2. #accounting: If you’re an accountant you’re in luck – listings in this field come up regularly on Twitter.
  3. #SEO: A popular area for recruitment, this one has been tagged more than a million times by job seekers.
  4. #journojobs: For budding journalists, look no further than this hashtag to find your dream position.
  5. #industry: Use this with another tag like #tech or #marketing and you’ll find listings matched to your area of expertise.

If you have a crystal-clear idea of what you’re after, hashtag the specific job you are looking for. This is perfect for those of us in specialist industries such as web development, HR or professional services.

Another option if you’re looking for something a little more niche is this clever tool from Hashtagify which allows you to search for popular hashtags.

Finally, a great way to grab the attention of a potential employer is by using a picture with your tweet – Twitter posts with images receive 150% more engagement.

Conventional methods for finding a job are slowly fading into the background, and the hashtag is now your best friend for securing the position of your dreams. Twitter should be right up there at the top of your list of ways to find your next role.


Effective Prep For Career or Job Change

According ot Dan Schwabel, between ages 18 and 50, the average person will hold 12 jobs and almost half of them may be before age 25.  If you are contemplated a change in  employment, read these 7 tips to speed you on your way.

  1. Before you leap into a new career or move your current one to a new company, spend some time thinking about what you want in the new position.  How do you want to spend your day?  What problems do you want to solve?  What challenges you? Which skills do you want to use? Who do you want to work with-what kind of people help you perform optimally?  Where to you thrive, what environment and elements of company culture nurture your gifts?  Answer these questions to help you make the best career-promoting decisions.
  2. Create a career plan, frame the trajectory of you working life using the information generated by step one.   You need to have a goal in order to select the path most likely to move you toward it.  Not knowing where you are going is the biggest mistake you can make.  The goal may be revised many times as doors close and windows open through no action of yours.  Think of the job categories that no longer exist and those that have sprung up in the last  years.  To be able to evaluate new options you must have some standards to compare them to.
  3. Expand your knowledge of what is out there, where the opportunities are.  Don’t limit yourself to the kinds of jobs you’ve held or the fields of endeavor  you already know.  Great ways to learn about new kinds of work are through networking and getting to know lots of new people.  Join something; connect with professional groups; use LinkedIn to expand your horizons.  Ask for informational interviews; ask to shadow someone whose job seems interesting.  Read newspapers and magazines; read professional journals in fields that interest you.  Attend professional organization meetings, conferences, presentations.  Volunteer.  Think outside the box you are in!
  4. Before you settle on a new direction, research the job market and salary.  Be certain that there are openings to be filled.  If you don’t have all of the sills required, consider the time and expense or re-tooling and prepare to show how your current experiences have positioned you to slip seamlessly into the new role.
  5. Financial planning for the transition is necessary.  You may need to support yourself without income for a short while.  Training may be necessary and not all companies pay full salary during this period.  Have some extra funds so that you aren’t forced to take the highest paying (but not necessarily the most rewarding) job or the first one offered.  Sometimes you will need to accept a lower starting salary or fewer benefits until you’ve proven your value.
  6. Don’t assume that in order to get the job you want you will need another degree or job specific skills.  Many companies prefer to train new hires themselves.  Others will pay for employees to go back to school.  Where it appears that only MBAs will be interviewed, look for other positions that do the same work but without the degree requirement from the start.  Most professionals know that a degree gives good backgrounding and exposure, but the real learning is done on the job.
  7. Some DONTs and DOs.  Don’t wait before you have a new job.  Don’t neglect networking.  Don’t skip the research into  yourself and potential careers.  Don’t give up too quickly.  Do begin to consider a move when you aren’t growing in your present role or when you can see that the fit isn’t a good one. Do draw on strengths developed in previous positions. Do find a mentor or support team. Do adjust your resume to reflect the new position or career field.

I’m available to help with your career journey.  Lets get together soon! stephanie@accessguidance.com or 610-212-6679.


Are You Savvy About Getting A Job?

Job Applications

Students, how much do you know about the documents and activities that help you find a job?  Take this Job Search Strategy Quiz from Grand Valley State University.  The 14 True/False questions will show you how far ahead of the curve you are.






After you complete the quiz, give me a call to talk about strategies you will need to get a job or an internship.  610-212-6679 or stephanie@accessguidance.com


From The Muse: 53 Ways To Get A Job By Graduation

The job search plan you create should cover these bases:

Under Pressure

1. Create and refine your job search plan

2. Strategize your networking

3. Keep adding the most-needed skills in your field

4. Expand your job search criteria

5. Polish your professional online presence


I’m not going to recount all 53 things you should do if you are a college student looking for your first post-graduation job but you can read them all in the following post.


5 Things You Should Know Before You Job Search

Two great sources of information for soon-to-be college-graduates seeking jobs are Inside Higher Education and NACE, The National Association of Colleges and Employers.  From their posts and articles I’ve culled 5 tips.

1. A high percentage of employers find that college grads are deficient in oral and written communication.  The fix: get help with your resume from either your college career office or a consultant who writes resumes.  Do the same with prep for interviews.  Be confident that you display top-notch communication.

2. Proofread several times and have someone else read your docs over, too.  Documents without typos or other errors shows your attention to detail.  No one wants to hire a slob.

3. Internships are important to potential employers.  Even unpaid, you develop job-specific skills and gain accomplishments to put into your resume.   You;ll have projects to discuss in an interview.  Past performance predicts future success.

4. Volunteering is also important.  Not only does volunteering give you experience but demonstrates what is important to you.  Sometimes community service can make a strong connection to your future workplace.

5. If you decide to hire a recruiter or job placement expert, be aware that they work for the company with the open positions.  The company pays so loyalty goes to the check writer.  Job searching on your own can be as fruitful as hiring a recruiter.  The gem in this tip is to stay in touch with your recruiter or with the companies where you want to work.  Don’t depend on someone else to take the lead.  Polite inquiries, brief messages or requests for information show persistence, a good quality to have.

Here are 5 ways you can help yourself acquire a job. If you would like help with resume writing, interview readiness or networking, lets get together.  I want you to put your best foot forward!  stephanie@accessguidance.com or 610-212-6679



5 Tips For Keeping Your References Fresh

Job candidates no longer mention references on their resumes but still need to have a list of people for potential employers to call.  Before setting up an interview, employers frequently search for you online and may contact your boss or co-workers even before you meet face to face.  Here are some things you can do to be prepared.

  1. Ask before listing someone as a reference.  Don’t assume that everyone has a good story to tell and is willing to tell it.  Don’t blindside your references by not asking if they are willing to recommend you.
  2. Build a solid list of references.  You may want to use different people for different circumstances.  Consider supervisors from other departments where you have trained or worked on projects.  Do you have a good relationship with your supervisor’s boss? Have your co-workers been promoted to supervisory positions?  Do people from previous employment know you better than your current colleagues?
  3. Stay up to date with your references.  Let them know that you are searching and with their permission would like to use them as a reference.  Stay in touch with their careers, promotions and interests.  Keep the info-loop open!
  4. Do your best to stay on good terms with everyone.  You can’t be sure who your potential employer knows.  Network and help others.
  5. Cultivate your on-line presence and brand.  Participate in groups on LinkedIn, comment in chats and group postings.  Follow companies that may have job openings.  Be sure you  are able to be found by potential employers on social media.  Make sure that what is found is consistent and illustrates what you want searchers to know about you.

In today’s world, openings are frequently filled through a network without ever being posted.  When a grant writer is needed a search may be made on line or colleagues may be asked to recommend someone.  It is important to be ready to present a resume and references on short notice.

Lets talk about how to identify a good reference and how to be one!  Email stephanie@astephanie@accessguidance.com or call 610-212-6679.

Your Resume Headline

resume-1799953_640Resumes no longer open with an objective because, frankly, the hiring manager doesn’t care what you’re looking for.  She is trying to find someone who can solve a problem the company is having be it a sales person to cover existing and potential buyers or a financial planner with 10 years experience.

A stronger approach is a headline that highlights your strengths and value to this  employer.

A simple headline could look like this:

“Administrative Assistant looking for a busy medical practice to organize.  My forte is coordinating staff and physician schedules for efficient patient flow and satisfaction.”

If responding to a job opening, you should add specifics mentioned in the ad. “Five years experience in a 3-physician office handling 80 patients per day.”


“Will organize records and referrals to reduce stress and raise productivity.”

Using a headline lets the hiring manager know right from the get-go that you have the qualifications, personality and desire to do the job on offer.  Your headline whets the appetite to read more about you, which is just what you want the hiring manager to do.

Resumes are your personal marketing tool: make yours a document that will move your from prospect to serious candidate.  Stephanie can help you with that! 610-212-6679 or stephanie@accessguidance.com.





Five Go-To Tips for An Effective Job/Internship Search

Here are five essential ingredients of an effective search for an internship or job.

  1. Polish your social media accounts.  You must appear professional, enthusiastic,
    Can I Read Your Resume Here?
    Can I Read Your Resume Here?

    approachable.  The information you post must be consistent across all sites and your resume.

  2. Create a resume that will be readable on a computer, tablet or phone.  You will need a clear format with plenty of white space.  Be sure that your contact information is easy to find and use.  Your email address should be professional.
  3. Be concise, reference the industry you want to be in or that of the job you are targeting; show that you are knowledgeable about the industry, company and job.  If the job is in a restaurant, they don’t care that you type 120 words per minute.
  4. Stay engaged with your network.  If you are actively searching for a job, let people know.  If you aren’t searching, stay in touch with your connections by helping others. Most jobs are acquired through people you know, who know you or who are connected in some way to your network.
  5. Choose recommenders carefully.  They should have current information about you and be able to talk about your accomplishments.  Be sure you check with them before adding them to your list of recommenders.  You may have already been vetted before you are approached so keep recommenders and other contacts  in the loop.

As you can see, your network plays an important role in finding your first or your next job. If you need help creating or maintaining your network, lets get together!  stephanie@accessguidance.com or 610-212-6679.


Using Social Media To Your Advantage

Where is Waldo?
Where is Waldo?

Did you know that your social media accounts like Facebook can help you reach goals?  By curating the information and photos you post you can help or hinder your acquisition of a job or scholarship.



Listen to the podcast to learn more.

Profile management is a critical endeavor for anyone who is a student, who works or eventually wants to be employed.  Use social media as a marketing tool to stay top-of-mind, highlight accomplishments and new skills.

Access College and Career consultants will help you make the most of your online presence as one of our services to clients who are ready to move up or move on.  Call or text 610-212-6679 to see how we can help you.