J.A. Albertson Building

Samuel Kohl

Samuel Kohl came to the University of Idaho his junior year and has since taken advantage of almost every opportunity the Career Center has to offer, and more.   He is currently a senior with a dual major in Operations Management and Marketing, and plans on graduating in December of 2014.  He has officially been accepted for an internship with Boeing in the summer of 2014, which he earned by “networking and taking advantage of every opportunity that was out there”.

In an interview with the Career Center, Sam stated:

How the Career Center has helped you in general:  “In general, the Career Center has helped me in focusing my resume, being aware of what employers are looking for, presenting a professional image during the career fairs, and giving me a new perspective.”

The most helpful thing the Career Center has done for you: “I have met with Career Advisors 3 different times; all three were for resume critiques.  I already knew what I wanted to do, it was just ‘How do I get there?’.  The meetings have been very helpful in focusing on which strengths I want to present in my resume and how to present them better, as well as how to tailor it for different employers.  The whole process very much includes you; you’re the one designing the resume, and they are giving feedback.  You have to be involved in it, they aren’t going to sit there and write your resume for you, but they really do help make it easy and they have a lot of useful tools to help you achieve success.”

Career Development Workshops:  “I have probably attended one workshop a month.  Last year I went to all of the Career Fair Preparation workshops, and I also went to interview workshops, and a workshop on what to wear…the only Career Center event I didn’t attend last year was the etiquette dinner, but I am planning on attending the one this spring.  The workshop that stuck out to me the most was the interview workshop.  I learned how to approach a phone interview versus an in-person interview.  It taught me that dressing professionally for a phone interview is important too; the way you dress changes the way you present yourself.  You may never notice it but it is the subtle behavioral traits and tone of voice that come across over the phone that make the difference.  After that I tried it and it turned out to be very true.”

Job Fairs and Successes: “I have been to every Career Fair since I have attended the University of Idaho.  I have gotten at least 2 interviews out of every single one.  I got an internship with Boeing, not specifically through the Career Fair because it was through other connection in the College of Business, but I was able to build on those connections through the Career Fair.  The Boeing recruiter remembered me from last year’s Career Fair, so the connections I was able to build at the Fair were definitely worth it.”

Preparation for the Job Fairs:  “I did some company research on the 3 or 4 companies I knew I was interested in both before and during the fair.  I asked myself: What is this company about?  What are the key points?  I also tailored my resume to those 3 or 4 companies and also made a general resume for the companies that caught my interest when I was at the fair.  I did a lot of resume preparation and applied everything I had learned from the workshops and other things like how to dress, how to speak to employers (how not to speak so fast and bluntly that it comes across robotic).   I recommend that students do company research not only before the fair but during it too.  Usually it is held at the SUB and there are computers you can use to step out and do some fast 5 minute research to find the basic points and appear knowledgeable to the employer when you go to talk to them.”

Future goals:  “My future goal for myself is to be in Corporate Executive Leadership, directing a corporation from an executive position towards productive ends, which could vary depending on the industry or the environment that the organization is in.  I love leadership and working with people to accomplish a productive goal.  In five years I hope to be with a large or mid-sized corporation moving towards a management position.”

Comments on the UI Career Center:  “I would absolutely recommend to people to use the Career Center.  It has so many resources from advising to practice sessions for interviews- phone and actual face to face.  The connection the Career Center has with other universities is extensive and very well established.  Hire a Vandal is an excellent resource and I would highly recommend students work through it.  The Career Fairs are great, but are sometimes limited in what they might offer, so Hire a Vandal is a fabulous avenue to explore more options.  I would highly recommend the Career Center for every student – if you are not taking advantage of the resources offered here, you will be selling yourself short.”

One last thought:  “I want to encourage students to start looking for jobs and being familiar with their field even from their freshman year, and then refine that throughout the college years.  They should have a good understanding of themselves and the external environment they will be facing.”

-Samuel Kohl, University of Idaho Alumnus