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Global Internships

Here at Career Services, we definitely encourage students to complete at least one internship befglobal internships imageore they graduate. But what if you’re interested in study abroad as well? Of course, you could always do a study abroad and an internship at different times, but another great option is to do an internship abroad! OSU’s Study Abroad office works with a program called IE3 Global Internships that aims to place students in an internship position in another country. Students can also receive academic credit for their internship. For more information check out this link: http://ie3global.ous.edu/campus/osu/

Read a firsthand account of a student’s experience in an IE3 internship. Ben Spearing recently returned from an internship in Namibia, where he was working at the Cheetah Conservation Fund, and you can read about it at his blog http://benspearing1.blogspot.com/

 

Note:  This post is linked to a external blog and the content for the post approved by Oregon State University Career Services. We are not responsible for the content on the guest blogger’s personal website and do not endorse their site. 

 

posted by Deirdre Newton, Career Assistant

Panama Experience: Volunteer Abroad

Freshman year caused drastic alterations in my life. Being away from my home of 18 years, including all family, most of my friends, my loving Great Dane/Pit Bull…it was difficult for me. I spent my four years of high school involved in a variety of volunteer activities, ranging from being a member of the PAL’s program at the Southern Oregon Humane Society to enrolling in the Buddy Program which entails interacting and becoming a helping friend to an elementary school student throughout the Springtime. When I transferred to the college setting, I had to depart from all of my old responsibilities and begin new ones. The best way I discovered to find a range of volunteer opportunities was being involved in the Civic Engagement Club. This club sends out weekly emails that include multiple different opportunities to get involved in the community. Since it was only the first few weeks of school, I was still very new to everything so I  ended up spending hours skimming through each opportunity that was presented. I came across a volunteer abroad opportunity, titled Public Health Global Brigade, which immediately struck my interest.

First of all, I love traveling. Studying abroad has been my dream ever since I was old enough to understand what it even meant! I signed up and began going to the meetings to get further knowledge about the program. Knowing I would have to set myself back financially made me want to rethink if it was really worth it or not, but my heart quickly trumped the thoughts. After going to the first few meetings, I could not come up with any potential negative consequences that would make me regret the experience so I stayed committed and it eventually led me to the Darien region of Panama.

Our mission was to improve the overall health of the communities we visit by building/completing latrines. From this, children and adults will have better access to a clean bathroom which will help reduce the chance of obtaining diseases that can lead to a serious illness or even death. Alongside 23 other women and 1 man, all from OSU, we spent seven days rebuilding ten latrines that were not finished by previous Public Health Brigades and started and completed one main latrine at an Elementary school outside the Darien region.

We assisted and worked with certified Panamanian contractors so we weren’t completely clueless as to how to build the structures. We worked through 90% humidity, through the downpour of rain (and “downpour” is an understatement), through pools of perspiration, through laughs, jokes, smiles and committed dedication. All of this led up to an everlasting bond between the student volunteers, the Panamanian contractors, the Panamanian directors in charge of the Global Brigade program in Panama, and the families in each of the communities we visited.whitney blog pic

Returning home was saddening, but also reviving. I learned a tremendous amount of culture differences and experienced what life is like outside the US. It is true when American travelers of the world say “be thankful for what we have here in the US.” Every single one of us volunteers came back thankful, inspired and lively. You honestly can’t get that sensation from anything else. As a volunteer abroad student, I now have an expanded heart and more of a passion to make a difference here in this world. I hope others will take a chance, open themselves to  ”one-time” opportunities so they will one day achieve the same experience and awareness as I have.

 

 

Have you had a memorable volunteer or volunteer abroad experience? Tell us about it!


posted by Whitney Cordes, Career Assistant

Career Services Resource Library

Here at Career Services, not only do we offer professional one-on-one career counseling, resume/cover letter critiques, mock interviews, and career assessments, but we also house a new well-renovated, cozy space that serves as the Career Resource Library. The new Resource Library has been a great addition to the lobby of Career Services and it offers a variety or career-related resources that specifically help with career development, career decision-making, and career exploration.

If you have  an interest in exploring the world via an internship abroad or volunteering in another country, we have information that helps you to explore many different types of career related work that you can do. Peace Corps is one of the programs that is supported by OSU Career Services and we have a Peace Corps Representative who specializes in helping students who have a passion in gaining an experience aboard. Peace Corps information can be found in our Resource Library along with information about Teach for America, the JET Programme, AmeriCorps, and the IE 3 Global Internship program. Come check it out!

We have many books and guides that allow you to do career exploration, occupational researching, and gain information about the job search process. There is a great series of books that is currently on our shelves published by VGM Career Horizon titled Great Jobs. These books are tailored specifically for an intended major, ranging from Art, Business, Engineering, Psychology, and everything in between.  These books focus on how you can:

  • Discover all your career options
  • Target your ideal career
  • Set a path to advance your career
  • Assess your strengths and interests
  • Explore unusual career paths
  • Set strategies for getting the job that you want.

If you are interested in careers that focus on environmental issues, we have Green Careers resources that can be beneficial for your success. Special career focuses such as Non-profit organization work, Social Services, and Entrepreneurship are all great resources that we offer for those that are interested in these career fields.

We have the Job Choices magazine series that allow you to focus on the job market of certain types of career fields. Its features tips on how to succeed in interviews , job search techniques, things that employers are looking for in an employee, resume and cover letters tips, along with the ins and outs of certain career pathways.

If you’re looking for a place where you can sit and relax on a comfy couch and read about your career of interest, our Career Resource Library is the right place for you!  Resources are updated  frequently, therefore you’ll get the latest news in the job market and information about your career of choice. These resources are super useful in terms of helping you gain confidence of obtaining the dream career that you’ve always wanted.

Posted by Phi Vu, Career Services Assistant

Why Study Abroad?

Here are 10 reasons why you should consider studying abroad….

1. Study abroad is the optimal way to learn a language. The language on a daily basis will surround you.

2. Study abroad provides the opportunity to travel. It allows you to venture and see what the country has to offer.

3. Study abroad allows you get to know another culture first-hand. You can truly understand different cultures, and show appreciation.

4. Study abroad will help you develop skills and give you experiences a classroom setting will never provide.

5. Study abroad affords you the opportunity to make friends around the world. There is no such thing as too much friends!

6. Study abroad helps you to learn about yourself.

7. Study abroad expands your worldview.

8. Study abroad gives you the opportunity to break out of your academic routine.

9. Study abroad enhances employment opportunities. This is always a plus!

10.Study abroad can enhance the value of your degree.

Oregon State University offers lots of opportunities to study abroad. But the thing is where to begin? First of all you should start by looking at the study abroad portion on the website. It offers places you can choose to study in, what requirements you need and how to start planning and saving money. We all know that studying in a different country isn’t cheap, so by looking early for scholarships and grants is a must, but not to worry, your abroad counselor will go over all of that with you on a one-on-one meeting.

Some things to remember, you must keep up your GPA maintain at least a 3.0 and above. Be organized and meet all due dates, start planning a year a head. Make connections with people who are from your desired country choice. Do research of the place you plan on studying at. Learn the language a little bit! It’s going to take some time to get everything planned but with good help and attitude it will happen. Explore the world while you learn, that’s what makes life so exciting!

Check out the following website for more information to get started: http://oregonstate.edu/international/studyabroad

Posted by Hulali Kaapana, Career Services Assistant


Turning the Career Fair into a Job

The Career Fair is a great place to talk to potential employers. You know you will have the opportunity to talk to many employers, but how exactly do you turn the Career Fair into a job? Below are some ways you can stand out!

  • Dress for Success- Appearance plays a big part in the way that potential employers sees you. Body language is 55% of what employers use to select who they want to work for them. When it comes to the Career Fair it is important that you are looking your best. You want to stand out from others who aren’t looking professional and make it easier for employers to lean towards you. For men, a suit would be ideal but slacks, a button up shirt and a tie also work. For women, a suit (pants or skirt are fine) are also ideal, but you can also pair pants with a professional-looking blouse, blazer or sweater and make sure to wear a comfortable yet classy shoe (either flat or pumps are appropriate).
  • Resumes and Cover Letters- Having a strong resume and cover letter gives you a chance to stand out after meeting employers at the Career Fair. Employers get stacks of resumes after Career Fairs and you want to make sure that yours stands out. Format is important but it is more important to tailor your experience to the company or organization you will be talking to.
  • Be Prepared- There are many ways you should prepare yourself for the Career Fair. Doing research about a company or organization that you are interested in is very important. It is not a good idea to approach an employer and ask them what they do. You want to be prepared to talk to them about why you are interested in their company or organization and the different ways that you can fill their needs. You also want to prepare your “30 second spiel,” which highlights your resume, skills, and interests and it is always good to ask questions.
  • Follow up – After talking to an employer, ask for his/her business card and make sure to follow up with an email thanking them for their time and that you look forward to talking to them again in the future. You could even set up an informational interview which could get you connected to even more people.

These are some ways that you can turn a Career Fair into a job. Don’t be afraid to think about it as you interviewing employers to see if they fit your needs. You want to make sure you go in with a game plan and confidence, once you do that you will be ahead of everyone else.

Posted by Silver Trujillo, Career Services Assistant

Life is calling. How far will you go?

When I was ten years old my grandpa and I went to Honduras to visit my aunt, who was serving in the Peace Corps. During the two weeks I was there I learned a few key phrases in Spanish (¿donde esta el bano?), experienced a new culture, made new friends, learned how to make tortillas from scratch, and was awoken early each morning by a rooster. The experience made me look at the world from another perspective and made me appreciate many of the things I took for granted living in the United States, such as clean water, education, and paved roads. That trip was a pivotal moment in my life; I promised myself that I too would one day join the Peace Corps.

Realizing the Dream

In May 2006, my dream of serving in the Peace Corps came true when my husband and I departed the United States for Bolivia, a land-locked country in South America. We arrived in the city of Cochabamba, where we spent three months in training. Half the day we took Spanish classes and the other part we learned about Bolivian culture and gained more skills in our project areas. We were part of a group of 30 other volunteers.  Each of us lived with a different Bolivian host family. After those three months of training we were officially “Peace Corps Volunteers” and we were then sent to our sites, where we would spend the next two years. My husband and I were placed in Huacareta, in the region of Chuquisaca, a rural village of about 1,000 people.

Working in a Bolivian Community

My main project was to work with the schools in and around Huacareta. I worked with teachers, introducing them to a more interactive teaching style. I also taught children and women’s groups the importance of sanitation, nutrition, dental hygiene, AIDS/HIV prevention, and computer skills. One of the most rewarding experiences was working with a women’s group to start a peanut butter-making business. The women learned about proper food handling, the nutritious benefits of peanut butter, accounting methods, and working together as a team with specific roles. I thoroughly enjoyed working with them; throughout the process the women and I shared many stories and laughter, and I was able to learn so much about them. I also got to witness the empowerment that the women felt from earning their own money.

The Benefits of Service

Joining the Peace Corps is one of the best experiences of my life. I got to be immersed in another culture, learn a new language, make new friends, and most of all, I got to learn much about myself. Since being back home in the United States I have connected with other returned Peace Corps Volunteers and shared with others about Bolivia. Other benefits include a readjustment stipend, deferment of student loans, reduced graduate school tuition, noncompetitive eligibility for employment in the federal government, and of course the professional skills gained during service such as learning another language, cross-cultural understanding, and international experience.

Start Your Own Life-Defining Experience

I encourage anyone who has thought about living in another country and wants to share their skills and experiences with others to look into serving in the Peace Corps. Volunteers serve in 77 countries (Africa, Asia, the Caribbean, Central and South America, Europe, and the Middle East) and provide technical assistance in six program areas: education, youth and community development, health, business and information and communications technology, agriculture, and environment. If you have any questions or concerns about the Peace Corps or the application process, please contact me, I would love to talk with you. The Peace Corps website is another great resource: peacecorps.gov

My advice is to do your research about the program and talk to as many returned Peace Corps volunteers as you can about their experience. I love quotes and one that I think about often is by Samuel Johnson – “When making your choice in life, do not neglect to live.” Each day in the Peace Corps definitely made me feel alive.

Jen Busick
OSU Peace Corps Campus Representative
peacecorps@oregonstate.edu

541-737-2003

Posted by Jen Busick, Peace Corps Campus Representative and Career Resource Specialist

Volunteering: Benefits and Suggestions

Posted by Bobbi Meyer, Career Services Graduate Assistant

Volunteering is a powerful act that benefits not only those being served, but those providing the service.  As you mold a career identity and prepare yourself for life after college, volunteering can play a key in role in your development.  This post will help you explore the world of volunteerism through a closer look at the benefits of volunteering, advice on choosing an appropriate opportunity, and suggestions for where to start.

The benefits of volunteering are many.  A sense of achievement and worth are but two valuable personal benefits.  From the lens of Career Services, there are also professional benefits of volunteering.  Participating in a volunteer experience:

  • assists you in learning and developing new skills.  Employers are looking to hire people who are adaptable and bring with them a myriad of transferable skills from past experiences.
  • allows you to explore career options.  Deciding on a job path that is right for you can be complicated.  Volunteering is a great way to try out many types of careers.
  • betters your interpersonal skills. Through volunteering, you’ll better understand people and their needs, you’ll learn how to work with and motivate others, and you may have the opportunity to learn how to deal with a difficult situation.
  • connects you with a network of people in your field. The people you meet while volunteering may become mentors, future references, or the link you need to find a future job.

Once you have made the decision to volunteer, it is important be intentional about the type of opportunity you seek.  You should first consider your goals, motivations, and values; think about how you would like the experience to better prepare you for your future ambitions.  You must also be realistic with yourself and the skills you currently have, seeking out an organization that matches your strengths and interests.  Next, you should decide on the amount of time you are able to give to the experience, including the number of hours each week and the duration of time you are hoping to spend (i.e. one month, one term, one year, etc.).  When thinking about time, also consider what days of the week work best and what times during those days.  Once you are ready to voice your interest to a volunteer coordinator, be honest about the type of experience you are hoping for, but also listen with an open mind.

Oregon State University houses an office to specifically aid students in finding the perfect volunteer opportunity.  The Community Service Center’s website offers links to volunteer opportunities, hosts events to recruit volunteers, and puts on special projects of their own.  There is also a Nonprofit & Volunteer Expo coming up on January 20th where a variety of nonprofits will be present and you can check out their volunteer opportunities. I encourage you to engage in a volunteer experience; you’ll soon find how powerful your work can be.



Peace Corps Volunteer

Sometimes a job search can seem like a daunting process. Turning in multiple applications for a position you’re not even sure you want to pursue can seem discouraging. So, why are you going through this process? Do you think this will lead to great happiness and success for you? Have you considered other options? Have you considered….the Peace Corps?

The Peace Corps mission has three simple goals:

  1. Help participating countries meet their need for trained men and women
  2. Help promote a better understanding of Americans on the part of the peoples served
  3. Help promote a better understanding of other peoples on the part of Americans

Peace Corps Volunteers work in the following areas: education, youth outreach, and community development; business development; agriculture and environment; health and HIV/AIDS; and information technology.  Peace Corps Volunteers work in countries from Asia to Central America, and from Europe to Africa.

The Peace Corps is a popular option for many graduating students who are interested in volunteering in developing countries to bring about peace and care for the community. To find out more, visit the Peace Corps website, contact your Oregon State University Peace Corps representative, or stop by Career Services in the basement of Kerr Administration to pick up some helpful materials.peace corps map

How far would you go to help someone? Would you go to the end of your driveway? Would you cross a street? Would you cross an ocean? To a place 6,000 miles from home? And how long would you go? Would you go for a week? A month? A year? Would you go for 2 years? Would you go if you could use your knowledge to teach someone and… in the process… maybe learn something yourself? Life is calling! How far will you go?