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A Glimpse into Public Service: A Passion for the Environment- A Conversation with Juanita Baldwin, Texas Commission on Environmental Quality

 I recently spoke with Juanita Baldwin, SHRM-CP, PHR, from the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality (TCEQ), the regulatory agency charged with protecting the environment for the beautiful State of Texas. TCEQ’s mission at the state level is similar to the work performed by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) at the federal level. She shared with me helpful tips and strategies for job candidates who are searching for internships or full-time employment, as well as advice on what the TCEQ looks for in potential candidates.

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Summer Withdrawals & How to Defeat Them

Back to school – we all know the feeling. Whether you spent your entire summer travelling and relaxing, or whether you were slaving away at a job, internship or volunteer position, there’s a certain panic that accompanies the end of summer and the transition back to school life. The chilling expectation of winter weather aside, fall semester can be intimidating in a way that winter semester often isn’t: your brain isn’t functioning like it used to, you’re reading slower, your handwriting is way messier and there is no reading week to look forward to. Fall semester, however, is the best time to get active both on and off campus! Here are some ways to maximize your first few months back: (more…)

What I Learned from a Summer in Retail

At the end of the winter semester, I found myself in a scramble to find a summer job. In the end, I started working as a sales associate at a popular clothing chain. While it may not be a prestigious internship, the experience has been awesome, from a learning standpoint, but also socially, since I had great coworkers. Notably, this summer I learned a lot about customer service from my experience in retail. Overall, based on the past summer, I have found retail experience to be more valuable than I would have expected. (more…)

Research in Industry vs. Academic Research

Credit to: Japan Chemical Daily

It is not that easy to get an internship in a company, especially when there are more restrictions on international students. As I wrote in my very first blog, I went to an interview to get an R&D internship in a renowned enterprise in the fine chemical industry. It was a hard interview but fortunately I nailed it. Without this experience, I would not decide to do a PhD after a master, and it was so different from doing academic research. (more…)

What I Wish I’d Done During Recruitment Season

From pre-recruitment events and firm tours to end-of-recruitment cocktails, the accounting recruitment season passes by fast. But through the stress, excitement, and all of the waiting, you might be lucky enough to get a call from your favourite firm. Looking back, here’s what I would have done differently.  (more…)

What’s a Firm Tour Like?

If you’re going through accounting recruitment, or you expect to in the near future, there’s no doubt that you’ll be attending a firm tour. Whether it’s one of the Big 4, a medium or small sized firm, this is your chance to find out where you fit in. Like any networking event, firm tours can be intimidating. Here’s what to expect. (more…)

How to Negotiate a Job Offer – Workshop Overview

Life is full of negotiations and compromises. However, when we think about negotiating a job offer, the stereotypes of greedy, bossy and uncommitted people quickly surface. Many people fear that negotiating a job offer will lead to tension in the workplace, or even cause them to lose an offer*. Consequently, many people shy away from negotiating and from asking for a better work experience for themselves. To help us navigate the complexities of negotiating a job offer, McGill’s Career Planning Services (CaPS) hosted a workshop called “Negotiating Your Academic Job Offer” on March 30th, presented by Dr. Niem Huynh, as part of the Academic Career Week. Here, I summarize the main strategies for negotiating a job offer.

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Grades Matter, but Experience Matters More

Why does it seem that being successful at school means employers will be lining up at our doors to hire us when we graduate? It’s not true! If we have no job experience, we are at the bottom of the hiring pool behind candidates who have already been part of the work force for several years. Retrospectively, if I had worked hard at finding unpaid or even paid experience in my field, instead of just focusing on excelling in the classroom during my studies, I feel as if I would have been better equipped for the job search now. (more…)

EXPERTS WANTED: Evolving Expectations at the Entry Level

81bw6nzlhcl-_sl1500_Millennials will tell you that entry level jobs want you to have 30 years of past work experience, 4 degrees and your own famous non-profit charity. Starting out means more contribution than it does learning experience and growth nowadays, so how can we compete?

I wanted to explore this idea, and the reason why Entry-Level jobs want you to enter with a near-genius expertise, in comparison to the generations before.

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Summer Work for Future Rewards

It’s always stressful jumping into something or beginning something new. For so many of my friends they are starting their internships or summer jobs and need to adjust to finally working in the field they’ll be in once theygraduate. Your manager is most likely not someone you share classes with and you probably won’t need a hair net anymore.

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