How to gain experience for your first job

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Photo credit:

As a job seeker, I was often frustrated by the catch-22 that you need experience to get a job, but you need a job to get experience. But then I realized that you don’t necessarily need a job to get experience.

So I wrote a guest post on Chelsea Krost’s blog about alternative ways that young job seekers could get the experience they need for their first full-time job:

Top 6 Ways To Gain Experience Before Your First Job (

Special thanks to Chelsea Krost for publishing this post. And I hope that if you’re searching for your first job, this post will help you become a more competitive candidate.

20something profile: Lauren

IMG_2381This post was written by Lauren, who runs a blog about 20-somethings:

As soon as I stepped on campus at Elon University, I knew that I wanted to be in the communications building soaking up wisdom and inspiration from the myriad of amazing professors with powerhouse résumés.

For me, the years flew by in a stream of lectures, weekends, friends, internships, and experiences. The day I graduated, I had a plan and was on my way to a flawless execution…until life happened. Read the rest of this entry

My move to NYC

Two months ago, I moved to New York City for graduate school. I wrote a piece on my experiences in the city for Twenty Something Living. Special thanks to Lindsay and Lauren of Twenty Something Living for publishing my piece. (I’ll be featuring a 20something profile of Lauren later this week.)

From the Suburbs to New York City: My Move to the Big Apple (

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How to handle money in your 20s


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Even billionaires made mistakes with their finances when they were our age. In this Business Insider piece, nine financially successful people share what they wish they had known about money when they were in their twenties:

What 9 Successful People Wish They’d Known About Money In Their 20s (

Tim Ferriss, author of The 4-Hour Workweek, advises twenty-somethings to prioritize learning new skills over earning a high salary. While learning new job skills might not pay off in the short term, it’ll lead to career growth over the long term. Read the rest of this entry

20something profile: Kelsey

Kelsey HortonThis post was written by Kelsey, who works at an environmental nonprofit:

In May 2012, I graduated with a major in Environmental Studies, a minor in Peace Studies, and no clarity on what my Life’s Work would look like. I felt helplessly pinned between three of my strongest passions — sustainability, spirituality, and creative writing — and I didn’t believe there was a place in the world for a multi-passionate person like me.

I started working at an environmental nonprofit two months after graduation, which was technically my goal all along, but feelings of incompleteness nagged at me. Visions of normalness and business suits danced in my head. Did starting my career in a cubicle mean I was letting my other creative dreams rot within me? Read the rest of this entry

Boomerang Kids: A Photo Essay

Photo credit: Damon Casarez

Photo credit: Damon Casarez

A few months ago, I wrote a post on a New York Times piece about millennials moving back in with their parents after graduating college. While my post focused on the article’s text, the article also contained a collection of photographs featuring young adults who were living in their parents’ homes again:

“Hi Mom, I’m Home!” (

The photographer, Damon Cesarez, was inspired to take these photos by his own experience of moving back in with his parents because of student loan debt. Each photo lists its subject’s student loan debt, along with their names, ages, hometowns, degrees, career goals, current jobs, and quotes from their interviews. Read the rest of this entry

20something profile: Michael

Me & PenguinsThis post was written by Michael, a fiction writer:

When I graduated high school, I was unsure of what I wanted to study. I liked foreign languages and linguistics. I liked reading too. But above all, I liked writing fiction, and I knew I wouldn’t be happy doing anything else.

So, I took French and Italian, two languages I already had some experience in. I took German, something that had fascinated me for years. I also took courses in political science and Persian and astronomy. My philosophy for university was simple: study things that interest me, and the rest will sort itself out. Read the rest of this entry

When you take your career seriously

IMG_1526This post was written by Cheryl, whose 20something profile you can read here:

I had a moment, a few mornings ago.

Since I’ve taken my writing far more seriously, a lot of opportunities have been coming out of the woodwork. And I couldn’t be happier about that fact.

I wasn’t taking myself seriously enough in my career and industry, thinking that I didn’t have a degree, so all the opportunities that came my way were just lucky. There is a degree of being in the right place at the right time, BUT that “right place” often finds you working. I took myself lightly, and with a glib wave of a hand, saying “someday” and so, everyone around me listened. Until one day I decided differently and acted differently.

What happens when you treat distant dreams as realistic things that might come true?  Read the rest of this entry

20something profile: Cheryl

DSC_5497-2-2This post was written by Cheryl, a writer, photographer, and activist:

You might say I did everything the wrong way.

I went to university, racked up credit card debt I couldn’t pay off, took out student loans and then, without any guarantees on the horizon, I left university.

I went in fall 2005, majoring first in History before switching to major in Sociology.

Sitting on the top floors of the library at Brock University, I was overcome with anxiety and dread because I couldn’t run from the idea of leaving anymore. I wrote myself a letter on the blank back pages of lecture slides from the statistics class I was skipping (I still have it). Read the rest of this entry

Job seekers: Be proactive!


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I recently came across a video series on NYC Media about finding jobs. While I’m sure that each of the videos contains great information about the job hunt, I wanted to focus on the video that’s most relevant to me and other young professionals out there: Gen Y School to Career

This video features the executive director of NYU’s career center and a senior career advisor at Baruch College, as well as millennial workplace expert Lindsay Pollack: people who certainly know what they’re talking about when it comes to young adults and finding jobs.   Read the rest of this entry


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