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2015

When to Use Your Major GPA

If you are like most students, you know your cumulative GPA.  If it is high, you’re probably satisfied with it and will willingly supply it to any recruiter who asks.  If it is not as high as you'd like, and a recruiter brings it up, it can potentially create some uncomfortable moments, even causing you to break out in an audible sweat.  You start silently yelling at yourself for not taking your history classes more seriously. 

All is not lost.  If you have worked hard in your engineering classes, with strong grades reflecting that hard work, then it is likely that your major GPA is significantly higher than your cumulative GPA.  You can calculate your major GPA, and present it to a recruiter with confidence.  (But be sure to present it as your major GPA; it is never okay to mislead or lie to … 

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Managing Job Search Stress

Are you stressed out with your job search? You are not alone! Frustration and tension can often be side effects of searching for a job. Here are a few tips that will help you conquer the process:

Analyze your search.

You should create a long-term plan for your search, recognizing that it may take several months to land a position. ECS recommends that students apply to 30 postings per semester. Setting a weekly application goal is a great way to prevent you from feeling overwhelmed. Poor time management can cause a lot of unnecessary stress. If you plan ahead and make sure you don’t exceed your limits, you’ll find yourself calmer and more focused.

Students should also be persistent with the job search. Remain constant with your networking efforts – attend information sessions, career fairs and follow up with recruiters you meet after events. Also, bring your best self to interviews- … 

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Post Interview Checklist

The interview is over, and the waiting game begins. It seemed to go well, but you’re still waiting to hear back. What should you be doing after the interview?

Send a thank you.

A thoughtful thank you should be sent to the recruiter(s) within 24 hours. CareerBuilder conducted a survey, which showed that 22% of employers are less likely to hire a candidate who did not send a thank you, and 91% of employers liked being thanked for the interview. Recognize that many company representatives conducting interviews are taking on recruiting as an addiitonal task to their engineering job, so thanking them for the the extra effort can go a long way.

Refer to your notes after the interview and write something thoughtful. Email is the quickest way to follow up. A nice additional touch would be promptly mailing out a personal, hand-written thank you note.  

Follow the interviewer’s guidelines, and … 

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Common Mistakes New Grads Make at Their First Job

A college diploma may get you a full-time job after graduation, but it doesn’t guarantee that you will stay employed or get promoted. Once you do secure that dream job, it’s time to work just as hard at getting off on the right foot. While making a mistake or two is, well, part of the job—and part of the learning process—below are a few common ones that new graduates often make:

Misdirection

We all get stumped or puzzled with a problem at work. Realize that unexpected problems are expected, and a manager’s job is to ensure his/her team is operating at top performance. Rather than waste hours or even days on trying to figure this issue out on your own, ask your colleagues or supervisor for direction and advice. Most bosses are more understanding than you’d think. Asking specific questions is expected. In fact, asking the right questions will show … 

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Identifying Companies That Value "Work-Life Balance"

“Choose a job you love, and you will never have to work a day in your life.” This quote might be true if my career was as a professional athlete or a famous musician, but since I am neither, work is still work. I may love my job, but at the end of the day, I want to turn off the emails, shut down the computer, and enjoy the evening without the stress of work following me home. The phrase “work-life balance” has become such a buzz word that employers may say their company values it, but in reality, the demands of the job prevent you from having a life. How can you tell if a company encourages work-life balance or are all talk? Below are four tips to help you figure out if the company truly values work-life balance.

  1. Do online research prior to the interview.
    As with all … 

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