Hello! I am Ashley Laspina, and I recently graduated from the Department of Communication at Shepherd University. As graduation approaches for many seniors, I know first hand the excitement and stress felt as the job searches begin.
To help demystify the process, I’m writing a 3-part series of posts on my transition from graduation to my career. Here’s part 1 (part 2 can be found here)!
As I walked across the stage on my graduation day in May of 2013, I was sad that my journey at Shepherd University in the Department of Communication was coming to an end. I was unsure of my future and faced mixed emotions of excitement and nervousness. After working hard for four years, I felt prepared to join the working world. But I did not have a clear career path in front of me.
I was working for an independent recruiting company as a recruiter for mostly IT jobs, but I also spent time creating and maintaining the company’s social media accounts. I was only working part-time and wanted more. I jumped into the MBA program at Shepherd University, and while it was somewhat of a rash and hurried decision for me, I feel it was the right one.
My job hunt was also in full force. Once an employer was interested, I felt confident in my efforts to impress them with my technical skills and the experiences I gained through Shepherd (Specifically, I had developed an entire social media campaign for my capstone project). Writing and creative thinking were two other important professional skills I really developed during my Shepherd experience in the communication department.
As I continued to wait for employment opportunities, I realized I needed to expand my job search. While I had some great experience and a wonderful education, it seemed like many employers for the jobs I was applying for wanted more experience. So I branched out and applied for more jobs. Then, in July of 2013, I received an email from an online university in regards to a job for which I applied. They asked me to complete a writing screen for my application. I confidently submitted my writing screen, using many tips I learned while studying at Shepherd. Before long, I was asked to come in for an interview. This was my first real interview since I graduated, and I knew I had to knock it out of the park. This was MY job to take (as long as I felt it was the right fit)!
Since I did not know the specific questions I would be asked during my interview, I began reviewing the many experiences and skills I acquired through college. I also reviewed general interview questions I found on different websites. It worked! I was able to sell myself in the interview. After being called in for a second interview and receiving several letters of recommendation, I was offered the job!
Since then, I have come a long way. My job requires me to work with many students each day (most of whom are veterans), but I also am working with very large Excel spreadsheets and other computer programs. I have found a position that uses my personal communication skills and many technical skills to succeed.
I enjoy my work and feel satisfied each day. Hard work and commitment to my job have opened up new experiences for me, which is discussed in my second blog post here!