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Informational Interviews

College students have a few options when it comes to researching a potential employer to see if the job and the work environment are a perfect fit. Internships are often a great way to get college credit (or even a little dough) for working in an organization of interest. If you are short on time or graduation is just around the corner, a better option might be to set up an informational interview. Even though most informational interviews don’t usually yield a job offer by the end of the 1 hour meeting, they provide a valuable opportunity for people to not only pick the brains of professionals in their field of interest, but in some cases, these professionals (if they like you) might provide you with leads to positions that are hiring.

Yesterday, I had the opportunity to finally meet with an employee at my dream employer, a globally recognized athletic apparel and equipment company housed in a fortress in Beaverton (I wonder what company that is!). I read about the person I was meeting with on LinkedIn and spent the majority of the meeting finding out what he did, how he got to where he is, and if he enjoys what he is doing. Not only did I leave the meeting feeling encouraged about my chances of snagging up one of their prized jobs, but the person I met with gave me an internal listing of open positions, some creative and effective strategies to get in touch with hiring recruiters and a copy of my resume that he would pass around on my behalf. At the end of the day, can you beat an opportunity like that?

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