Coming to a big place like Virginia Tech can be a bit overwhelming! With so many organizations, clubs, and different opportunities and career fairs, it is really a fishbowl of opportunities. It can be hard to self-advocate and take advantage of these resources, especially with balancing your education and school work. However, there are important resources which can help you greatly in your future, and I have some tips for seeking them out and self-advocating!
1. Your Own Affairs in Order
It’s important to make time for opportunities aside from obligations like classes, work, and organizations you’re in. One thing which you can do to start off is print out an hourly calendar of each day of the week, with the 24 hours of the day. Write down how much of your time is already taken, for things like classes, meetings, work, sleep, and how much time you spend doing homework, eating, etc. This may seem to be a bit overdoing it, but in the end, you have a pretty good sense of how much time you can commit to new things.
2. Stay Aware
There are always different flyers and career fairs all over Virginia Tech. There are also organizations on GobblerConnect which post about their events, and the easiest way to access these limitless opportunities is by taking the time to read the flyers or taking a picture of anything you’re interested in going to or taking advantage of. This can range from company visits hosted by different clubs as well as things like tutoring, going to the library and getting someone to look at your assignments. These opportunities are always available and taking advantage of them will ultimately help you in the long run!
3. Self Advocate
With so many opportunities, there are also many people you can meet. For every company visit you go to or every educational opportunity you take, there are plenty of opportunities to meet the people who lead that event and form a connection with them. It’s important to utilize your time spent somewhere efficiently by asking questions to those who are there and getting personal help! This can even come in handy when it’s time for job interviews and those people remember you from your first meeting.
4. Prioritize Your Time
Although taking every opportunity may seem like the right thing to do, that would result in a lot of time spent on one part of your life, and less time for other important obligations! It’s wise to look through your meetings and pick 2-3 to attend per week and be fully present at those meetings.
5. Don’t forget that being a Hokie matters!
One thing that is a huge resource to you is that you are a Hokie. That means that you have a connection with anyone who was an alumnus of Virginia Tech, and many of those alumni will want to hire a Hokie like you. Taking advantage of your opportunities now will allow you to meet many alumni who come back to Virginia Tech to recruit, so use your Hokie pride to your advantage by putting yourself out there with them!