Showcase Your Soft Skills

This week we look at how administrators can prepare graduate students for non-academic careers, why rural students may or may not choose a college education, and why companies like Siemens are choosing not to open factories in America.

 
Three Paradigms for a Successful Alumni Engagement Strategy
HIGHER ED LIVE
You have to give to receive. If you graduated from college and are now employed, your alma mater thinks they are the reason, and therefore you should give them money. Alumni offices use this “guilting” tactic regularly to attempt to strengthen their alumni engagement, but could easily up their numbers if they realize that “continued involvement from alumni must be earned, not expected.”

How Administrators Can Help Prepare Ph.D.s for Nonfaculty Careers 
CHRONICLE OF HIGHER EDUCATION
PhD’s don’t always lead to faculty careers. But to go this nontraditional path, administrators should help students in their pursuits by: 1. Bringing alumni back to the institution to share their success in non-faculty career path. 2. Creating opportunities on campus for students to develop new skills. 3. Thinking twice before developing new Ph.D. programs for which there are no clear employment opportunities.

This LinkedIn Recruiter's Tips for Showcasing Soft Skills on Job Interviews
FAST COMPANY
More employers than ever are measuring candidates on their soft skills. Things like critical thinking, adaptability, and learning agility matter to potential employers, and how you communicate these skills matters. Rethink your interview tactics and give yourself the best chance for success by dialing up your adaptability, being ready with unexpected anecdotes, or even finding out if the company uses predictive hiring software, like Koru or Berke, to vet applicants.

An Introvert's Guide to Job Interviews
ENTREPRENEUR
Nobody wants to be thought of as aloof or inhibited in a job interview. Here are 13 tips for introverts to sail through what can be the most challenging part of one's interviewing process, from making personal connections with the interviewers, to bringing physical evidence of accomplishments, to reframing how to discuss one's acheivements so it doesn't feel like bragging or selling oneself.

A former LinkedIn Exec Explains How the Network Has Helped Him Get Every Job He's Had Since 2003
BUSINESS INSIDER
Is LinkedIn really that useful during a job search? Most employers use LinkedIn to find passive candidates, so even if you’re happily employed, keep your profile current. Show your personality with an articulate headline and optimize your profile for LinkedIn’s search engines. If you are looking for a new job, look for people who work in jobs you might want or companies you might be interested in rather than jobs that are open. This will help you network your way into your next opportunity. These techniques might just give you the edge you need when you're looking for a new job.

Wanted: Factory Workers, Degree Required 
NEW YORK TIMES
“There are no jobs for high school graduates at Siemens today.” This message is becoming more common among America’s large manufacturers. The unskilled, factory floor jobs of the last century are now automated; and in their place are job opportunities requiring technical skills and a college degree. Faced with a skills gap, employers are increasingly working with community colleges to provide students with specialized education and hands-on skills to become hireable in the industry.

Voices From Rural America on Why (or Why Not) to Go to College
NEW YORK TIMES
College is not just for coastal elites. The New York Times wanted to talk to people from rural America and ask them why they did or did not want to seek higher education. ‘I was tired of seeing people in my family fail.’ ‘I hate to be judged for my beliefs.’ ‘There are a lot of kids that don’t think they are good enough for college.’ These are just a few of the remarks made from students in rural America who are faced with many challenges when it comes to post-secondary education. Many come from low-income homes or are the first of their family to attend college.


Why Succeeding Against the Odds Can Make You Sick
NEW YORK TIMES
“John Henryism” is a tragic downside to success. It explains why America is the only country where skin color is correlated to average lifespan. The effect is named for the legendary John Henry who beat a mechanical drill in a contest, only to collapse dead from exhaustion. Researchers found that people who are more diligent and hard-working are also more prone to getting sick. It was thought African Americans in general were more susceptible to heart disease, but the research shows that this effect is limited to African Americans who score highly on high-effort coping.

 

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