arrival of fall means football season is in full swing! Whether you’re spending Friday nights rooting for the hometown pride, Saturday’s on a college campus or playing armchair quarterback from your recliner for the NFL teams on Sunday, football season is a big deal to a lot of people! Some of our own AgCareers.com staff members are devout college football fans and during the fall you’ll most likely find them spending Saturdays at their alma mater hosting great tailgates and cheering loud!
Since 2006 my friends and I have hosted a tailgate at the same location of Oklahoma State Universities campus. Hosting a tailgate is no simple task; it takes a lot of planning to be executed successfully. While setting up the tailgate this past weekend I started thinking about how much great tailgates and great job interviews have in common.
Coordinating the menu, décor and entertainment for a tailgate takes some planning well before gameday. The same goes for job interview prep. Spend time prior to the interview researching the organization, practicing answers to commonly asked questions and learning more about the organizations industry.
Every internship has its challenges. Luckily mine had nothing to do with the people or the culture of the company, just adapting to the indoor work environment. Last summer I spent 32 hours a week walking through fields, seven hours driving my pickup between locations and two hours in the office working on reports. This summer I have spent majority of my work hours behind two computer screens and only make it outside for my walk during my lunch break. Both extremes from my internships have taught me what paths I would like to take for my future career. Reflecting on my experiences, I have more to share. Here are some tips for internship success I have learned along the way:
• If you don’t like business professional and would rather wear jeans to work – then you need to search for an internship with that type of company culture. Don’t be afraid to ask about the company’s work attire and culture in an interview!
“Be on your best behavior!” Those familiar words from parents when you were starting a new school year or staying at a friend’s house for the first time. Most of us have times where we’d rather sleep in or we stayed out a little too late, but your first month on the job is crucial in your long-term success with the organization. Putting your best foot forward during the initial thirty days sets the tone with your employer, supervisors, and coworkers.
Hopefully, your new employer will communicate with you between your hiring and first day. It’s helpful if you can fill out the paperwork prior to your first day at work. The employer may share a company employee handbook and onboarding plan for your first few days or weeks on the job. These should be reviewed before you begin. Aim to understand the expectations for the first day, like company dress code, arrival time, lunch plans and more. If your new employer doesn’t readily share these details with you, ask!
Rushing in late every day and scurrying to your workspace won’t create the impression you desire. Likewise, packing up 15 minutes before your work day is done and running out the door a couple of minutes early will likely show your manager and peers that your level of commitment is low. Be settled and ready to work five minutes in advance and limit the urge to rush out the door when the clock strikes 5 pm (or whenever your work day ends).
A Veterinarian is a very popular and exciting career path, especially for those with a passion for animals. Samantha Tepley has been a Doctor of Veterinary Medicine (DVM) since June 2018. She shares a little bit about what life is like as a veterinarian in Eastern Iowa.
What made you want to become a veterinarian?
I have always wanted to be in the medical field. As I had exposure to the veterinary field through my own pets I realized that being a veterinarian was the perfect combination of my love for the medical field and my passion for animals. After I started working in veterinary clinics during my summer vacations I knew it was the perfect fit for me.
What is a day in the life like for you?
I start seeing patients at 8:30 AM. After I have 2-3 appointments in the morning I perform any surgeries that were scheduled for that day, those can be anything from a spay/neuter to a mass removal to a dental procedure. After the surgeries are done I spend the rest of my day seeing patients. Some of them are sick and need to be seen because they aren’t feeling well and some of them come in for yearly wellness exams, vaccinations and testing. On the really exciting days I get to perform emergency surgery somewhere in the day. I stop seeing patients at 5:30 PM but I may be at the clinic later than that if I am tending to sick hospitalized or surgery patients or if I have to come in to see an emergency after hours.
Every college student knows how difficult it can be trying to maintain good grades, a social life, and a job. However, there are some serious benefits to juggling those challenging tasks, especially when one of those tasks is interning. Employers want to see that you can balance several different aspects of life at once and it also gives you the sense of how much you can really handle. Here’s why it may be beneficial to intern during the school year:
Interning during the school year helps keep a balance between work and school. Let’s be honest, when you only have one class at 9 am it can be hard to get up and get going but knowing you must go to campus because you have to work afterwards, helps motivate you!
Maybe you go home to help on the farm or want to spend a summer traveling abroad. But if you get stuck in a college town during the school year, check into interning for a company or organization in your area. There is nothing wrong with keeping your summer free to work back home and finding an internship for the fall or spring semester.
Are you an executive or senior level professional in the agriculture industry? If so, we invite you to check out AgCareers.com Elite Talent platform. Elite Talent is a private online community from AgCareers.com where experienced, quality-checked professionals within agriculture can explore career opportunities and be matched with jobs through a confidential platform.
Generally speaking, the Elite Talent community is exclusively for those in a role within agriculture and food making $85,000 or more, although there are some exceptions for specialist roles. Upon registration, your information is sent to our Elite Talent team for review. They will connect if additional information is required or proceed to grant you access to the community.
Once a member, we’ll do the work for you and alert you of new job opportunities that match your desires. Elite Talent also provides additional resources to help you out.
“The days are long but the years are short.” – Gretchen Rubin. Time (and hence, life) moves quicker than we realize. If we let life happen to us, we can look back and wonder, “What if?” or feel we let opportunity slip away. If we approach life with purpose and direction, we’re more likely to accomplish personal and professional aspirations. One of the best ways to do this is to have a clear plan that gives you direction, clarity of purpose and allows you to communicate with others what you aspire to achieve! To get started, create a five-year plan. Start at year five and work backwards, setting benchmarks by year or clearly defined goals.
o Know and invest in your strengths.
o Describe what experiences in your industry or organization you believe is important and realistic.
Growing up on the farm has its perks and its challenges. Growing up on a farm often leads to finding yourself so involved in the business that you may not leave or experience other roles. Writing a resume or talking about your experiences may have you drawing a blank. But farm experience is some of the best experience! Here’s how to draw from your experiences working on the farm while interviewing and secure a new role for yourself.
Farming involves being able to think and react in a short amount of time. When something goes wrong, you have to be able to improvise on the spot while remaining calm and executing the new plan safely. Equipment breaks down at the most inopportune times. So explain the time that a piece of equipment broke down and you had five minutes to make a decision on what the plan to fix it, whether that be driving to town or calling the local equipment dealer for spare parts. Talk about how you took initiative and developed a plan of action quickly in a moment of stress. This can also apply to a livestock emergency.
You have done a great job in preparing your resume, cover letter and applying for the right positions, and now you have landed the interview! The interview is where you and the employer ask questions to determine if the job and employer will be a fit for you. Most questions in an interview pertain to your past job performance, skills, values and competencies. However, you quite likely will also be asked about your previous job (or jobs) and employers, and why you left past positions. This can be an easy question for those who left positions after longer service for advancement opportunities. However, this can be a trickier question for those who left previous employers due to lay-off, termination, bad feelings, etc. So, what is the best way to address these questions of past employers?
What you say about previous employment speaks volumes about you, not the boss, which is why interviewers pose the questions. Interviewers are looking for a few things when they ask about your previous job, such as:
Planning to do an internship? You’ve probably heard some things over the years that might deter you. But to be honest, there’s probably not a lot of truth to those rumors. Check out these intern myth busts to get the real story.
Intern Myth #1: Interns do the grunt work.
Not all interns are just coffee runners like you might see in the movies. Most interns will take on numerous large projects to complete by the end of their internship. As well as advancing their career skills in several different areas.
Intern Myth #2: Internships are only in the summer.
If you are someone who has a hard time committing your warm summer days off of school to a job, then a summer internship may not be in your best interest. And it doesn’t have to be! Internships can take place during the spring and fall as well. The only downfall is that your internship might have to be limited to the hours between school and other commitments. Some students even take a semester off and work a full-time internship during the school year.