We’re always super excited when students and recent grads get hooked up with jobs through AfterCollege, but today’s post may just go down in history as the most epically awesome job search story we’ve encountered yet.
Why is that? Well, we’ll let Catherine Ha, Sales Coordinator at Premiere Networks, share her story in her own words.
Where did you go to school and what did you study?
I went to UC Santa Barbara, where I majored in Communication and minored in History and Asian American Studies.
When did you start your current job?
In February 2014.
How did you go about your job search?
The first day of my job search, I found AfterCollege through Google. In previous job searches I used CareerBuilder and LinkedIn but got mixed results with the websites’ search engines. I liked right away how AfterCollege’s filters made it easier to find jobs I was both interested in and qualified for. I didn’t have to suffer through the usual issues of having to slog through hundreds of postings for which I was under-qualified, overqualified, or uninterested. The website made applying for positions much quicker and easier. My job was actually the second posting I applied to through AfterCollege during my job search.
How long did your job search take?
I started searching for a new job in early February. I found AfterCollege my first day and the posting for the job I have now on my second day. I was lucky because my job search was so quick. I applied on a Thursday, received a response the next Monday, had the phone interview that Wednesday, the in-person interview on Friday, and the second interview the week after. I received a job offer the following week, bringing my job hunt to a close after a mere three weeks.
I had a couple phone interviews with other companies during that time, but decided early on to focus only on this opportunity over the others. I’m lucky that this decision worked out for me and that my company needed to fill my position so quickly. I have a friend who looked for a job for a year before she was hired and another who searched for five months.
How did you become interested in your field?
My interest in my field stems from college, when I was studying Communication. I took a marketing class where I had to create a radio advertisement and marketing plan for the final, and I remember holding stimulating conversations with the people I interviewed at various radio stations and broadcast companies. I enjoyed the class and was impressed by what I learned, and hoped for a career in broadcasting when I graduated from school. When I saw the posting for my position at Premiere Networks, a radio network and syndication company, I knew it was what I wanted.
What are you most looking forward to about your new job?
I haven’t been working for very long, but so far I’ve enjoyed learning new things again. It’s challenging and stimulating in the best way. Though my previous job had a similar title, it was in a different field and the 16-week marketing and media course I took in college didn’t begin to scratch the surface of what I need to know. Just about everything I’m learning right now is foreign, but I love the fast-paced energy and the rush of new and interesting information. It’s exciting.
Working for a broadcast company has other benefits that make my job entertaining. Artists will occasionally stop by and give performances for contest winners, and employees are welcome to watch. My second day on the job, I was able to watch Mike Posner give a performance and take a picture with him. It’s a great perk and definitely makes work even more interesting.
What advice would you give to college students who are interested in pursuing a career in your field?
For college students looking to eventually get into media or advertising, I would say look into internships. There are so many great internship opportunities available to students that can turn into future career opportunities or at the very least make an exciting and appealing résumé entry. It’s the best way to break into an industry and gain invaluable experience in multiple aspects of a company. I really can’t stress the value of an internship enough. It’s what I recommend all college students pursue right away. Don’t become complacent during your college years. College is the best time to explore different fields and companies, and internships are the best way to do that.
I would also say use all possible resources because colleges make so many available to their students. AfterCollege is great because it helps you narrow down your job search and find positions based on your education and major, and it was the reason I found my job. But for current students, there are more select resources available through career centers. Universities have great career centers that often form exclusive relationships with companies, which can give applicants an extra edge.
Also, and I’m sure everyone says this, but network and develop new relationships. Pump those resources (politely, of course) because knowing the right person has gotten me, and many of my friends, job interviews and offers that would have been otherwise unavailable.
Homework time! Make sure your AfterCollege profile is up to date. Spend some time exploring job listings and giving feedback on the job titles, categories, and locations you like and don’t like. And if you have an epic success story you’d like to share, let us know!