What you need to know from Rhea Faniel, CCNY’s fairy “job-mother!” by Ashley Kalstek
“The days of the hookup where your neighbor’s uncle’s dog walker’s best friend gets you a job–are over,” said Rhea Faniel, associate director of recruitment, placement and external relations at CCNY’s Career and Professional Development Institute. She recently addressed an Intro to Journalism class about what it takes to be seen as a valued employee in the current job market.
With competition unlike at any other time, the importance of being able to learn, impress, communicate and re-invent yourself has risen. You may not have an engineering degree, for example, but if you learn how to properly package yourself as an engineer, you can land that job in the engineering field. Skeptical? Well, Faniel did just that. “It’s about being prepared,” she said.
Faniel believes so strongly in these tricks and tools because they made her a gifted career coach.
She spoke energetically about the importance of learning skill and packaging them according to the industry you want. Talking to a group of students practicing journalism, she said, “If you are not good at social media, you need to get good.”
Branding yourself means more than your GPA ever will. “If you can communicate, and you can write, and you can talk, you can find a job,” Faniel stated. “I have people who have had a 4.0 but I cannot get them a job because they have no interpersonal skills.”
Although Faniel has helped many students find positions, she can’t get you the job. She will practice interview questions, critique resumes and give real advice, but will not put in the work for you. “Ultimately, you’re the person that goes and sits in that seat and wins that job for yourself. Nobody but you,” said Faniel. “This is a good time for you all. This is a time where people embrace diversity. They accept you. They value what you bring to the table based on your race, your sexual preference, or whatever it is.”
According to Faniel, loving what you do, being prepared, and setting the bar for yourself makes the transition from school to a career easier. She advises asking yourself: “What do I have to do to make myself outstanding?”