The Office of Career Services in the School of Public Health is rich with resources to help students improve their appeal to prospective employers for internships and jobs. They have resources ranging from handouts to an informational website to full time advisors and peer mentors. The latter is one of the more underutilized resources that the Office offers. This past week, I have had the pleasure of sitting down with one of the peer mentors – Nikole Bruno.
Niki was very professional to begin the meeting as I asked her to help me go over my resume and my LinkedIn profile. She told me that she usually spends around 30 minutes with each student but can obviously end later or earlier when needed. She began by looking over my resume, going through it carefully and writing notes when and where she needed to. After she finished scanning it, we talked over her suggested changes and talked about my career goals and aspirations. I asked her a couple questions about resumes in general and she was able to draw from her own experience in order to answer my questions. I was wondering if I should favor a specific piece of experience that I have in a resume if I am applying for a job that was very similar to it. She was able to draw from an experience in which she had a similar problem and manipulated her resume to favor her best piece of experience and that gave me more confidence in doing the same. We then moved to my LinkedIn profile where she proceeded to scroll through the page and verbally told me any notes that she had. She was very knowledgeable about both LinkedIn and resume writing and I felt a lot more confident walking out of the office about both than I did when I walked in.
Peer mentors are a very valuable resource that most students on campus don’t take advantage of. Peer mentors can give you a different perspective than an advisor or any other resource can. It is nice to be able to sit down and talk with them because it is very conversational, more of a talk between two students than one student telling another what to do with their resume, LinkedIn, etc. Full time advisors are great because they can draw from a larger pool of experience but at times, it can be tougher to ask them questions because of the age and experience gap. That’s where peer mentors can step in and be a great resource, it’s very easy to speak with them and ask them any questions. My experience was great with Niki and I will definitely be utilizing the peer mentor resource the next time I have questions about professional resources.
Dustin is a sophomore undergraduate student who is majoring in Sport Marketing and Management as well as Economics and aspires to work in baseball operations. You will most likely find him watching a sporting event.