The Charger Blog

Charger Blogger Offers Suggestions for Finding a Job

Beatrice Glaviano ’26 discusses the process of searching for a job, offering advice, support, and tips to her fellow Chargers.

April 23, 2024

By Beatrice Glaviano ’26

Maxcy Hall at the University of New Haven.
Maxcy Hall at the University of New Haven.

Greetings, everyone, and welcome. Today, I was called into work a bit early as our lunch server called out, which got me thinking:

Have I ever written a blog about how to get a job?

Swinging a job interview requires more skill than writing your accomplishments down in a crisp format; it involves an understanding of how to read a room, a person, and most importantly of all: how to read yourself.

When it comes to one’s initial journey into the workforce, I feel like there are two types of parents out there:

  1. “You’re 16! Go get a job and be independent!”
  2. And

  3. “You’re 16. Absolutely no jobs until you’re out of college.”

Now, I’m not saying this to hate on parents – both of these arguments are good ones and have their own pros and cons. When I started out my first year as a Charger in 2022, I got a job that November as I wanted to begin supporting myself more financially during an opportune time. As a student, you can avoid a lot of living costs (or at least postpone them) and really maximize your earnings. Utilizing a credit card, that you pay off each month, and starting a Roth IRA account are great ways of doing this.

However, both my parents were against it.

“You’re in school,” they told me. “You’ll distract yourself.”

At the time, I was pretty bummed out. Did they not trust me enough? Had I not proven myself academically in high school to show them that I knew when I was out of my water? I was 18. Why was I being treated like I was six? So, like many teenagers in college, I went and got a job.

Fast-forward a year and a half, and I’m still at the same spot. When you find a job that is meant for you, you’d be surprised at how much you’ll actually grow to love it (even when the going gets annoying). If I hadn’t directly disobeyed my parents (this is not me condoning going against your parents or guardians!) I wouldn’t have learned so much about Northern and Southern Indian culture and cuisine. I would’ve never guessed how important communication is and how it really is all about teamwork. Not to mention, the workplace allowed me to grow as a person. Yes, college does the same, but when you’re out in the real world, there are lessons you’ll learn there that you’d never get on a college campus.

You also get paid, so that’s pretty dope.

Before I jump into how to ace an interview, it would be a great idea to go over how to construct a resume. First rule of resume building? Never use a template.

Yes, I know Word gets all fancy and cool, and the font is pretty, but refrain from using templates from any software. Often, employers will scan your documents for keywords to find good candidates, but templates have been found to make your document as unreadable as a B.C. stone tablet. As a result, your resume is chucked into the internet trash can never to be seen ever again.

Essentially: don’t use templates (though you may look at them for reference).

When it comes to formatting a resume, there are a few main parts:

  1. Header: Name, Phone, LinkedIn account
  2. Profile: Who you are, your background and a brief mention of your skills
    • Here is mine as an example: “Passionate first-year Nutritional Sciences student with a firm background in the biological and chemical sciences. Spearheads objectives, with natural skills in time management, organization, and deadline prioritization. Familiar with literary and laboratory research reports.”
  3. Education
    • University and its location
    • Major and graduation date
    • Minor or Concentration
    • GPA, scholarships, research, awards
  4. Leadership Positions
  5. Extracurriculars
  6. Related Coursework
  7. Related Projects

Of course, UNewHaven has plenty of resources regarding this over at the Career Development Center and the Center for Success, but that’s it in a nutshell. There are also cover letters, but they’re probably not necessary when looking for more baseline jobs, such as restaurant or retail work. Either way, resumes provide an informative view of who you are as a person to employers so that they can determine if you’re worth interviewing.

So, let's say you got the interview and you’re sweating. Let’s also say that you remembered to put deodorant on. Personal hygiene and looking your best (as well as in accordance with the expected dress code, which is typically formal casual; anything nice will do) are key aspects to rocking an interview. It’s often said that we eat with our eyes first, and while I hope the person hiring you isn’t a cannibal, how you present yourself visually will have a massive impact on how your interview goes.

If Oscar the Grouch showed up to a Vogue interview, do you think he’d be hired as the next supermodel, despite having an amazing resume of high-quality trashcan photos?

Probably not.

Another thing to take into consideration is research. Look into the backgrounds of these companies. What is their mission? What do they strive for? Use these as a way to set up how you present your skills. If a company is really into ethically made products, it may be a good idea to tell them that you take interest in eco- or vegan-friendly products. Likewise, if the company has a very firm team set-up, mention your skills as both a leader and a team player (remember that leaders are always team players, too). Whatever the case, use the company’s “About” section to show them what’s up about you.

Secondly, print a copy of your resume and cover letter (the latter may not be required for basic jobs, but always print your resume and bring it with you in a folder). It’s proper etiquette, and it shows you care.

Thirdly, from my dad: when you’re asked why you didn’t like your previous job or a skill you struggled with, always put yourself in a position where you can say “and I learned “X” as a result of that.” Always make your failures into a success in front of future employers; they want to know how you bounce back from mistakes. To them, what matters is that when you come across something negative, you are able to move past, correct, and learn from it to the best of your ability. That’s it.

Fourthly: answer the questions and allow the employer to make conversation with you. Be engaging, but keep your answers concise. Going over what you want to say to your employer could also help immensely. At the end of the interview, the employer will normally ask you if you have any questions for them. Now is the time to ask about things (pay, hours, Roth IRA, etc.).

Finally, and most importantly: Be yourself. Granted, maybe don’t tell them that you have a mountain of stuffed animals or an anime obsession, but let the employer know what you place value on through your hobbies, schooling, and other aspects of your life. By letting the conversation flow, you display that you are able to engage in potentially stressful situations well. Pretty cool, isn’t it?

Whatever the case, this is just based on my personal experience. The more interactions you have with professionals or in situations in which resumes are needed (i.e., applications for research, internships, etc.) or interviews occur, the better you will be at doing them.

With that being said, that brings today’s article to an end. I hope that this was helpful given that the summer is coming up, and that everyone is having a gorgeous, gorgeous day. Wishing you all the best.

Peace, love, and peanut butter,

Beatrice Glaviano ’26 is a nutrition sciences major at the University of New Haven.