Thursday, July 30, 2009

NYTimes: Where Has Your Job Application Gone?

You find a job listing on the Internet, and apply for the position immediately with your cover letter and resume. It's been over a week, and you still do not hear back from a recruiter. Do you ever wonder what happened to your job application? The New York Times has an article about why the job hunting process has become more difficult for job seekers AND hiring managers.
First, the Internet has made it absurdly easy to apply for jobs. This means that unqualified people are clogging the system with their wing-and-a-prayer applications.

Then add rising numbers of unemployed people. More job seekers — qualified, unqualified and desperate — are hitting the send button. Acknowledgments are going by the wayside as recruiters confront hundreds of applications for a single job.

The best way to get your foot in the door is networking, networking, networking. Get a contact from the company you wish to work. Use online sites such as LinkedIn and Facebook to find professional contacts. Attend professional association meetings and conferences.

Do whatever to make yourself stand out from the crowd.

Saturday, July 25, 2009

Before You Move into Your Apartment

So, you finally found a place to live when you start graduate school. I found an apartment and signed a lease in June. I secured a roommate in July to split housing costs. I officially move into my new apartment in August. The process can be stressful, but it doesn't have to be. Here are some links I recommend for prospective and current students about apartment living:

You may also find that you don't need a land-line phone or cable television. Many students are mobile and rely on their cell phones as their primary number. Television can be a waste of money unless you must watch sports and are pursuing a degree in a communications field (i.e. journalism, etc.) High-speed Internet is the most important service you would need in your apartment. Just get a larger monitor (at least 22") and hook it up to your laptop to watch movies. Don't forget the Netflix subscription.

Monday, July 20, 2009

Reflections on the Admissions Process

In a few weeks, I will begin registering for Fall 2009 classes! I must say I did better than expected this admissions round. On average, I waited 4-6 weeks for an admission decision. The financial aid took much longer because I asked for more money (if you are in serious need, beg the admissions office and they will find a way to help fund your education!) Luck could be on your side. I also had to wait for the status of my course exemptions.

  • I received half-tuition scholarships that will cover two years of graduate study.
  • In addition to scholarships, I received federal loans and work-study, which covers my cost of attendance. (I did NOT have to use private or GradPLUS loans, which have higher interest rates.)
  • I received a semester of course exemptions. I have more freedom to choose courses across the university. I could also graduate early too.

If you are planning to attend graduate school within the next two years, I highly recommend this website: Your Guide to Getting into Grad School. It summarizes everything you need to do, such as writing personal statements, applying for scholarships/financial aid, and much more.

Orientation is a month away! I will travel and have fun!

Monday, July 6, 2009

NYTimes Series on Student Loan Debt

The New York Times Room for Debate Blog has an article series on student loan debt. Share these articles with college graduates and current graduate students. Visitors have posted comments near the end of each article. They are worth reading.

I will continue to update this post when I have more new articles.

Saturday, July 4, 2009

M-Card Discounts, 50 Tips for College Students

I finally received my M-Card, which is the official identification card for U-M students, faculty, and staff. In addition to having access to certain campus buildings and free transportation on city buses, I can also take advantage of student discounts at local Ann Arbor restaurants and services. For example, I discovered I can continue my gym membership at a cheaper monthly rate when I move to Ann Arbor. Sweet savings!

Campus Grotto has a list of 50 tips college students can save money. It includes food, transportation, textbooks, entertainment, finances, and other college expenses. Also check out Why College Students Will Always Be Broke.