Posts Tagged ‘Alumni’

ALUMNI INTERVIEW: I Was A Political Science Major, Now I…

May 3rd, 2017 by eklamm

Name: Payton Shubrick
Class Year: 2015
Title: R&D Lab Manager (Research and Development Lab Manager)
Organization Name: MassMutual
Major: Political Science

What does your job entail?

My role is to manage R&D activities for the company, specific to home office employees. What that means is I attempt to solve business problems leveraging emerging technologies as well as exploring technologies that could impact our industry in the next 12-18 months. What does that mean in plain English? I look for the return on investment a technology can offer. Can we save 2 million dollars be leveraging VR for training sessions as opposed to the current model of paying facilitators and having in classroom sessions?

How has your Holy Cross education contributed to your success?

My Holy Cross education has contributed to my success in many ways. At Holy Cross, I was able to grow – socially, intellectually, ethically, etc. I often find myself harnessing skills that I developed in both the classroom and student activities, like SGA and BSU, to propel me forward professionally. At Holy Cross, I was able to develop a greater sense of awareness of who I was as a person and how I can impact the world around me. With that mindset, you can rethink traditional business problems with many lenses to come up with a solution and then be able to present that idea in a well-written document or verbal presentation.

What skills are most important in your day to day work?

The most important skill in my work is being able to check, adjust, and pivot. Unlike traditional career paths with technology, you can come up with a solution and then discard the entire thing for something better because a smart algorithm can now be applied. This means you can’t grow too attached to one solution or one way to solve a problem. Everything is a fair game all the time and things change rapidly, so accept change early and fast to make life easier later.

What advice would you give to a Holy Cross student looking to enter your field?

Start studying trends in technology now. Virtual/ augmented reality, chatbots, algorithms, autonomous driving cars, artificial intelligence are real and going to change the world around us. In your day to day, life start to think about how things can simplify your life and delivery information before you know you want it.

ALUMNI INTERVIEW: I Was A Psychology Major, Now I …

April 10th, 2017 by eklamm

Thinking about a career in the arts/entertainment industry? Read on for an inside look at how your Holy Cross liberal arts education can lead to working in TV and Film.

Meet Alum Mike Dussault ’99, Creative Executive at The Tannenbaum Co.(CBS)

In one sentence, what does your job entail?

We are based out of CBS Studios and develop scripted TV shows for broadcast, cable and streaming outlets.

What planned and unplanned events connected you to your industry and your first employer after Holy Cross? How did you learn/decide it was a good fit for you?

I got my MFA in TV Production at Loyola Marymount University after graduating from Holy Cross. I interned for director Jay Roach while at LMU and that led me to my first job as an assistant at a talent agency. The entire TV and Film industries all run through the agencies and it was those connections that led to me ending up at The Tannenbaum Company where I’ve been for over 10 years. Agency jobs are long hours and low pay, but the exposure was invaluable for not only seeing what kind of company I wanted to move to, but also hearing about jobs when they opened up before anyone else. Really that year at the agency might’ve been more impactful on my career than getting my MFA.

What were you involved in when you were on campus?

Academics (obviously), Eucharistic Minister and ice hockey.

What was your major and how did it affect your career decisions?

Psychology. I think this major was far more helpful overall than my MFA in TV Production was because it gave me a different perspective than most regular film school grads. It was especially useful as I got into developing scripts and working with writers on character and story development. I come at story problems from a different place than many colleagues.

What are one or two skills that you developed at Holy Cross that you use in your work?

Reading is maybe the most important thing I do at my job and being able to read critically, to break down stories and characters, is essential. All day, every day there are scripts and pitches to read and discuss with my co-workers. You must be able to quickly take something in and give constructive notes to writers to get projects in the best place possible before we pass material up the flagpole to our studio and networks. This is my favorite part of my job and I’d never be able to do it without the critical reading skills that were honed at Holy Cross.

Also being able to work hard and being unflinching in the face of inevitable setbacks were critical things I learned in my experiences on the hill.

What advice do you have for students on campus today?

There isn’t one way to do anything. Everyone has their own path. Find your passion and then find a way to immerse yourself in the companies and people who do it everyday. The more people you meet, the more people who know what your passion is, the more people who might be able to help you. Get as many new and different experiences as you can to help you stand out. Don’t get discouraged by those who find their passion or are more successful earlier than you. Stay the course and never be afraid to take big swings at big opportunities. And never ever let your failures deter you. If you’re not failing you’re not truly trying!

Alumni Job Shadowing: Alex Bonano ‘17

February 29th, 2016 by rimaal17

Name: Alexander Bonano
Class Year: 2017
Major: Latin American & Latino Studies
Minor: Global Health Studies
Shadowing Visit Site:  Vertex Pharmaceuticals Inc.

Describe your visit and what did you gain from the experience?

My visit to Vertex was definitely one of the best experiences I had and I am glad to have it had it as my first job shadowing experience through the College of the Holy Cross. As a student who took science courses, I felt completely at home. The entire building is decorated with a chemical theme; the walls had organic chemistry reactions on the walls, the couches had a periodic element pillows, and each floor of the building was a different “element.” Also, refreshments were served while I was waiting to be seen, which definitely made me feel welcomed. During my time at Vertex, I sat on three different meetings and I began to see what the Legal Counsel does and through this, I was able to understand the roles of the other departments of Vertex as well. From there, we had lunch and on Wednesdays they have an Indian vendor come. Sidenote, I love Indian food so my day was definitely made. At lunch, I spoke with my alumni’s co-workers and learned more about them and their experience working at Vertex. The conversation soon shifted into a semi-debate about knowing what is that one wants to pursue and if it is essential to always plan ahead and have concrete agendas. I really enjoyed conversing on this topic, as they all gave me really good advice on keeping an open mind, and not limiting myself from potential opportunities.  I then got a full tour of the building, and learned about the learning center that BPS (Boston Public Schools) utilizes for their science courses as a new initiative to incite more interest in the sciences. After that, it was time to return home and my host offered me a ride since she drives my way. All in all, it was an amazing experience and I am glad I did experienced it.

How did this experience influence or connect to your future career plans/goals?

The experience allowed me to see that the Public/Global Health realm is super multifaceted and therefore allows one to hold a myriad of different positions and still contribute to the field. For example, my alumni host is a lawyer but the work that she does benefits the health of the patients who buy and take the medications produced by the company. So with that being said, it allowed to me to open myself more to the possibilities of different opportunities that could come my way. In thinking of graduate school, programs, I have found more interesting and unique programs that are not necessarily the “essential” degrees in Public/Global Health.

What is some helpful advice your alumni host shared with you?

After the conversation at lunch, she pulled me aside and made it quite clear that I do not need to know what I want to do before graduating. She gave her example of working first, and then realizing that she wanted to be a lawyer.  So with that being said, she wanted me to know that there is no race to get to the career that is meant for me. Just keep being open and taking opportunities and eventually I’ll get there. To end, I’ll offer this quote “focus on the roots and not the fruits.”

Why would you recommend the Alumni Job Shadowing Program to other students?   

Definitely! It was an awesome experience and was helpful in reinforcing the career path that I’ve chosen.

Alumni Career Spotlight: Meghan Summerson

February 20th, 2015 by rimaal17

headshot (1)Name: Meghan Summerson

Graduation Year: 2013

Major: English, with a Creative Writing Concentration and Pre-Med

Job: Marketing Operations Assistant at Scholastic

Industry: Publishing

Favorite Class: It’s hard for me to choose just one! I really enjoyed the upper level English classes I was able to take, particularly the seminar I did on Jane Austen. I also loved my courses focusing on 19th century British literature and all the Creative Writing classes. I had an opportunity to take Screenwriting and learned so much more than I ever thought I would about movies. I have to say Biology as well, just because it was always a passion of mine.

Campus Involvement: Student Health Awareness Peer Educators (SHAPE), Running Club, Sigma Tau Delta, SPUD

College Internship/Work Experience (if you were in Summer Internship Program, Academic Internship Program,other programs): I participated in SIP and did an internship with Nickelodeon for a TV show on Nick Jr. called “Team Umizoomi.”

What were some of the most defining events/opportunities/aspects of your time at Holy Cross?

Without SIP, I am not sure I would have ever moved to New York City. That program definitely shaped my life because I had the opportunity to try something completely new, and it was incredible. It gave me the push I needed to reach outside my comfort zone. From that point on, I knew I was going to New York after graduation. I knew I wanted to do something with education and children, and it ultimately led me to where I am today.

What is one thing someone should be certain to do before they graduate?

Make sure you have your resume ready to send out to potential employers. I would suggest also writing as many cover letters as you can and to take advantage of Career Planning. Have people read your resume and cover letters to get feedback. Before you know it, you’ll be sending out so many of these and you’ll want to feel comfortable and confident. The same thing also goes for interviews. Practice definitely helps! Go to networking events and look at the Career Advisor Network (it’s not so easy once you’ve graduated!). Even just talking to people about what they do might help you narrow down your own interests and aspirations.

What advice would you give to someone just starting out in your field?

Keep an open mind. Any position in publishing, whether it’s editorial or marketing, will teach you so much about the industry. If you’re not sure where exactly you want to be, just apply to everything and go from there. There’s so much opportunity for movement in publishing, and you can really do anything (online game design included!). If you can, try to find a mentor in another department. Their insight and advice will be so valuable to you. Learning about the industry from their perspective will not only broaden your understanding of publishing, but it will help you discover what you might ultimately be interested in.

What skills have you found most useful in your professional life that you attribute from learning at Holy Cross?

Project management is a huge part of my job, and I learned that just from juggling my own homework, activities, and personal life at Holy Cross. Because the course load and studying consumes so much of your time, you have to prioritize and make room for meetings, events, and time with friends. I feel comfortable keeping track of deadlines and schedules at work because I used that type of organization every day in college.

You also interact with alumni and professors so frequently at Holy Cross that you grow accustomed to speaking and writing professionally. I did not feel as intimidated once I started looking for a job because I was so used to corresponding this way.

What is the most important advice you could give a student on obtaining an internship or a job?

Someone once told me, “Don’t stress too much. You will get a job.” I definitely stressed, but they were right. It did happen, and it will happen for you. It might take a while, and sometimes you’ll feel frustrated and scared, but don’t give up. Also, don’t be afraid to say no to a job offer if it doesn’t feel quite right for you. You might apply to so many different jobs and go on so many different interviews, but remember that you’re also looking for a good fit for you. If something just doesn’t feel like the direction you want to go in, it’s ok to wait and try for something else. It’s also ok if you have no idea what you want to do. Any position you end up taking will help lead you to your dream job.

Career Planning Twitter Alumni-Student Initiative

February 20th, 2014 by Darien Henry

 

         Welcome Crusaders to the Twitter Edition of our #CareerPlanningBlog where we’ll be talking all about one of your favorite places to visit, #Twitter and  how it can help you on your path to landing a great internship/job opportunity. 

We all know how fun #twitter is in communicating thoughts, ideas and news! Hash-tag’s have become a huge part of our modern day lingo and many #companies look to twitter as a tool for reaching out to customers and clients as well as sharing information on #JobOpening’s and opportunities available to apply for. You may have thought twitter was all about your friends cleverly communicating every aspect of their life (even the aspects you don’t want to hear about), but in fact 77% of Fortune 500  companies actively use twitter. Why? #ThreeReasons 

                                           1. #Connect With Customers         2.#Visibility            3. #Self-Promotion

You may now be thinking, “So why is Twitter so important for an undergraduate seeking career advice at Holy Cross?”

            Well…Here at the Career Planning Center, we want to educate you about all ways of communication between students and the sources that help provide news/opportunities about exciting careers and internships. As it just so happens, we also have not ONE but TWO twitter accounts @CrusaderCareers & @HCSIP, which we would like to use in the most efficient of ways, so…we have come up with an initiative to better help you reach alumni who are currently in your preferred field.

Here’s what you have to do!

 1. TWEET US. (ANYTHING!) most importantly, we want to hear your questions!

Tweet us your questions using #HCCareerQuestions or #HCCQ and we’ll do our best to have that question answered by an alumni who has experience which can help you in your career endeavors. WHO KNOWS! you might get paired with an alumni who may just land you your next internship at a Fortune 500! 

All you have to do is send a simple Tweet. Here are some possible questions asked by completely imaginary HC Students:

@HCSophomore23: Hey I’m interested in marketing and advertising, what internships are out there for me? #HCCareerQuestions

@KingoftheHill77: Hi, Is there a place I can find out more about Business Programs at the Graduate School level? #HCCQ #HCCareerQuestions

@LarrytheCrusader: I took an internship at GE this summer, can I please connect with someone who has experience with this company? #HCCQ

@MaddieFitzgerald358: Hey I’m a junior interested in entering the fashion and designer world, is there anyone I can contact? #HCCareerQuestions 

So next time you’re daydreaming about where you’ll end up after the hill, or your scrolling down your timeline and run into a question, TWEET US! @CrusaderCareers or @HCSIP. We’ll be happy to answer and/or send it to a Alum in that same field.

BEAM yourself into the right Career TODAY!

December 3rd, 2013 by Darien Henry

Your friends in Hogan 203 have some BIG NEWS to unveil!

…Drum Roll Pleeeease…

The Holy Cross Career Planning Center is excited to announce our new virtual, 24/7, user-friendly program that helps determine exactly what career is best for you!
 
 
Through our continued efforts to meet your career management needs, we have partnered with CareerBeam to bring you the best career development information and the best company and industry research tools, available in the market.
 
 
Now you can tap into the hidden market of jobs and internships by accessing over 60 million companies and hundreds of industry segments. CareerBeam also allows you to identify millions of international companies in more than 170 countries.

A few highlights and features now available to you include:

  • Research on hundreds of Industries. Access to information such as recent developments, business challenges, trends and opportunities on hundreds of industry segments – get current financial information and insights as well.
  • Job Postings. The most updated job posting databases containing millions of jobs from multiple sources including internships, entry-level, professional and executive jobs. Postings are continuously authenticated to remove outdated postings and you can create alerts and find connections through social media.
  • Self-evaluation.Take a look at who you are today. CareerBeam’s unique career assessment tools factor in your values, temperament, interests and personality to help you develop — and achieve — career goals.
  • Create professional resumes and cover letters. Whether you are writing a first-time resume or updating a previous one, use CareerBeam for building an accomplishment-based resume and cover letter.
  • Prepare for Interview and Beyond. Review interview questions with tips on answers; view videos of effective responses; or record your own answers for review and feedback.
  • Networking & Social Media.  Social media integration allowing users to leverage their contacts in Facebook, LinkedIn and Twitter to network and identify potential connections and positions.

How do I use CareerBeam?

  1. Take up to fifteen assessments/exercises that combine to produce a personalized Career Profile report.
  2. Research 60 million companies, 70 million industry contacts, in-depth industry profiles, detailed occupational intelligence, and firms in over 170 different countries.
  3. Access 24/7 for everything you need related to your career, all in one.

To self-register and begin using the CareerBeam service, CLICK HERE.

Thinking about going global? Well try your luck with PASSPORT CAREER!

November 6th, 2013 by Darien Henry

Welcome Crusaders to this week’s Career Planning Blog Post…hosted by yours truly in the office of Hogan 203.

This week we are excited to introduce you to the new Passport Career program—your online career resource that will help you to explore opportunities around the world! Yes… THE WORLD!

Whether you’re looking to get away from the cold New England winters or just curious of the wonderful experience interning or working abroad might bring check out PASSPORT CAREER!

Around this time you may be seeking a job, internship, volunteer work, or are studying abroad. In any situation, Passport Career provides extensive resources, guidance, strategies, tools and support to help you make your career move!

Here we have outlined 5 easy tips to getting started with Passport Career:

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1. ACCESSING PASSPORT CAREER : First time users

a. Go to www.PassportCareer.com

b. Click on Have a Registration Key? on the upper right corner of the homepage –>

c. Enter this Registration Key (notice: all lowercase & only 1 “s”): HOLYCROS

d. Fill out the brief registration form. Use your school email address (except alumni) to create your login/password for future use and you’re ready to roll!

e. Use your email/password to login in the future.

2. CHECK OUT THE TOOLS

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On the menu bar, you will find quick access to several of the tools available, including the H1B Employer Database for non-Americans seeking jobs or internships in the USA. You will also find a direct link to the International Jobs/Intern Portal, which is updated daily with more than 1,000,000 jobs/internships in 203 countries.

JOIN THE INTRODUCTORY WEBINAR

  • To maximize the benefits of Passport Career, we suggest you immediately sign up for the webinar, called Using Passport Career Strategically. This webinar is offered monthly at different times and is an excellent way to help you take advantage of all the Passport Career system has to offer you. Click on Webinars at the top of the page.

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GLOBAL OVERVIEW

  • We suggest that you begin by reviewing the guidance and strategies relevant to your situation in My Global Career Briefcase. Click on the My Briefcase link at the top of the page.4

 

 

3. AVOID THE “ONE-VISIT” TRAP

In order to be successful with your exploration and/or transition, you need to think of Passport Career as your personal career assistant. We suggest that you schedule 15-30 minutes each week to explore further the content, resources and tools. People who use Passport Career regularly have the greatest chance of success with their career goals!

4. EXPLORE THE COUNTRIES & CITIES

There are many amazing photos and videos of the countries & cities featured throughout Passport Career. There are also more than 15,000 pages of expert career content! Take the time to learn about other places—especially their business culture, which is key (along with strategic networking) to successfully transitioning your career to a new location.

5. LOOKING FOR INFORMATION THAT YOU CAN’T FIND?

Click on the “HELP” link at the top of the page and fill out the form to send to your request or question OR, you can always send an email to info@passportcareer.com.

 

We want to hear from you!

Let us know how your job/internship search and career transition are moving along. What is working for you? Where do you need more help? What questions do you have? We are here to help you, so be sure to stay in communication with the Career Planning Center, Hogan 203.

 

Alumni Guest Post: Tricia Dunn ’12

April 30th, 2013 by mklync13

To round out our Alumni Guest Posts for the 2012-13 year, we’re happy to present Tricia Dunn ’12, former HC Career Planning Marketing Intern (& Blogger!) and current member of the Human Resources team at Hanover Insurance Group.

Check out more about her job & advice for students pursuing a career at Hanover or in HR!
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Hi Crusaders! It’s hard to believe that almost a year has passed since I graduated. And yet, while it

Tricia Dunn ’12

seems like just yesterday I was enjoying Cape Week and pre-graduation celebrations at the Pub, so much has happened since then that I can’t believe college was only a year ago.

I’m currently going on a year at The Hanover Insurance Group, where I work in the Human Resources department and am part of the company’s Future Leader’s Program. I’ve been lucky to try a variety of projects during this year here and am learning a lot. While I have enjoyed this past year and the growth and change it has brought, I will admit I do get a little nostalgic for HC sometimes. So, in that spirit, let’s pretend we’re meeting up in the pub for a $2 beer (side note: do any of you realize how great this is?!) and I’ll share what I’ve been up to over the past few months.

How did I end up at Hanover?

 

I first learned about The Hanover as a junior looking for internships. I wasn’t sure what I wanted to do and was applying to internships in a variety of fields and locations. Two young alumni had a lobby table in Hogan and were recruiting for The Hanover—with cupcakes.  No joke, I first learned about The Hanover due to my insatiable hunger for baked goods. One of them asked me if I was interested in applying for the internship program. Since I wasn’t really thinking about insurance, I didn’t take it seriously at first, but their enthusiasm for the company took me aback and I found myself connecting with a lot of the things they mentioned. The more I learned about Hanover, the more it sounded like a place I could like.

Fast forward three months and I returned to Holy Cross having enjoyed my internship and with an offer in hand for a full time position as part of The Hanover’s Future Leaders Program. While it was a little nerve wracking to commit to a company so soon into senior year, I was excited to join the program. I liked the idea of joining a training program in which I would be given more growth opportunities, mentorship, and cross-functional training.

Through the program, I’ll get a certificate in Business Analysis, learn about other business functions and get more access to leadership and mentoring opportunities than I probably would have otherwise. Also, I started with 40 other people – many of which I’ve become great friends with!

What do you specifically do there?

This is tough for me to answer because I worked on a diverse set of projects. I am currently in HR Operations, which supports and designs tactical solutions to get done in our department. In essence, we’re the back end people, on the ground, making sure everything runs smoothly. For example, I manage our relocation program; so when the company hires a new employee who needs to move for the job, I help set them up with our relocation vendor. I consult with the HR recruiters who are making the offer, manage vendor to ensure that it is meeting our employee’s need, pay invoices and run financial reports for our finance department.

I have also done some process improvement work for our Learning & Development group, which hosts and manages all of the enterprise-wide classes and learning programs. I took a look at how the operational work was being accomplished: how the online class sign up system worked, how the classes were being set up and hosted, etc., and was able to identify issues and and make recommendations to improve the user experience and improve efficiency. This project was fun because I got to do a lot of consulting work and the impact of my work was noticeable right away!

I think Operations was a good place to start because it provided me with foundational knowledge about

Co-workers decorate Tricia’s office!

the department and exposed me to all of the different areas within it. However, as I approach my one year mark with the company, I’m looking forward to trying something new. As of June, I will still be in HR, but I’ll be working with our Community Relations & Employee Engagement group. I’ve already begun to take on some more work in this area and am really enjoying it!  I am currently managing the redesign of our career site (stay tuned for improvements!), writing pieces for our internal company newsletter, and planning events with our community partners.  I’m looking forward to taking on more roles with marketing and helping others.

While I’m still not exactly sure what I want to do long-term, I am really happy to be where I am today. As mentioned, I am happy for my year in Operations, but I’ve always known I wanted to get into something more community-focused and more creative. Thankfully, I have had a lot of advocates at The Hanover who have mentored me and helped me get into this new role. As for long-term plans, I think the next year will be telling. I plan to continue to take on a diversity of projects to stretch my skills and interests in new ways. I think by doing this I will discern the next step most clearly and with the experiences I’ve had at HC and The Hanover I believe I’ll be ready to take it on!

Any advice for college students?

 

Yes! I have three that alumni have passed on to me and that I have learned in my one year in the proverbial real world:

1. Focus on the job role, not the job title.

Titles can be misleading and box you in to a job search. While titles hint at hint at what a job entails, there is usually more than meets the eye. It’s more accurate to approach a job by thinking about what you want your daily life to look like – do you like working with people? Doing something creative? Analytical? Are you passionate about research? Whatever that be, focus on those descriptive words and the type of work which you are seeking – rather than a title.

2. Advocate for what you’re interested in…

As a political science major and a studio art minor, I knew that Excel spreadsheets all day were not going to be my jam. Early on at my time at Hanover, I found myself enjoying my projects which were more creative, solidifying my interest in that area. I made sure my manager, mentors and others knew about it. As a result, I’ve been given more creative opportunities in my current position and will be transitioning to a more creative role full-time as of June.

3. …But be open.

As a newbie to the workforce, you’re bound to be doing projects and tasks you never thought you’d be interested in. Yeah, some of those projects are going to suck as much as you expected them to, but guaranteed you will learn something—and maybe even develop new interests—if you are open to it.

4. Drink more $2 beer.

Just kidding. Sort of. Have fun and enjoy the heck out of your time at Holy Cross! It’s a great experience and I encourage you all to make the most of your time there, in the classrooms, on the fields, in extracurricular and yes, even socially.

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Connect with this story?

Learn more about the opportunities at Hanover Insurance group here.

 

Alumni Guest Post: Ty Shaw ’09

February 25th, 2013 by mklync13

Kicking off our Alumni Guest Post series for the Spring Semester, Ty Shaw ’09 discusses how his post grad life led to his current role as a Business Development Consultant at Oracle!

Ty Shaw '09

Job prospects were few and far between when I left “The Cross” in 2009.  America was in the midst of the modern day great depression.  I soon learned the importance of humility, perseverance and strong networking–or as I say, making new friends and embracing old ones.

During my senior year I had one solid job prospect in an industry and location I didn’t want to be in after college, so instead of taking the job, I chose to go back home to Denver, CO.   At the time I was so wrapped up in my own ego and my sense of entitlement that I could not truly understand how tough the economy was.  I was fixed on the thought that I had a great degree from Holy Cross (which I did), and that was all I needed to land a good job.  I was sadly awakened when I spent almost my first year after graduation working with a staffing firm (temp. agency) to keep my resume/skills current.

During that year with the staffing firm, I was humbled.  I could not find permanent work, and I had sent in around one hundred applications and hadn’t landed any interviews.  My dad soon came to me and said “Son, you have to get around the movers and the shakers.”  So that’s what I did, networking became a part of my daily routine.  And I can’t stress enough how important it is to meet people doing things that you think you may be interested in because most companies don’t waste their time looking at resumes where there is no referral with it.  I began to connect with Holy Cross alumni in Colorado that I found off the Holy Cross alumni website, and I joined meetup groups (meetup.com) so that I could mingle with people that were doing the work I wanted to do.  Each networking experience helped me to realize that the best networkers are those that make genuine friends.  In this world we can never have too many genuine people in our lives that want to help and are open to being helped.

After networking in Colorado (and a few jobs later), I thought getting back to HC for a spring football game would be a good idea for me to reunite with old friends and teammates.  And I was right! Going back to HC is what led to my current opportunity at Oracle.  A Holy Cross teammate and friend told me about openings at Oracle and how he was recently hired—and this connection helped lead to my current job.

In my role, I am working as a Business Development Consultant (BDC) for Oracle.  I am responsible for prospecting into companies that have technology issues.  On a day to day basis, I perform in-depth research on these companies to gain a deep understanding of their business.  Also, I am researching to see how Oracle can add value to what they do.  Most of the companies I work with are public so I am able to read their 10k reports to understand their business and see if we can help.

Once I’m done researching companies online that I want to call into, I find people within the company to speak with.  There are a plethora of prospecting tools Oracle has available to BDC’s to use in order to find the right person in a company to speak business with.  The number one goal is to first build rapport with the prospect, and after connecting on a humanly level, I go on to better understand that person’s role inside the company they work for.  Then we get down to business, I ask questions to see if we can add value, and if there is a business pain I proceed to set up a next call to help facilitate the sales process.  My main job is pre-sales, so I do the research, find the business problem and build the relationship before facilitating the rest of the sales process with my sales team.  I also provide advice to my sales team on how we can drive business in their territory based off of the research I find.  Ultimately, I am in the business of helping the customer first and driving revenue second.

My opportunity at Oracle wouldn’t have been possible without my new-found sense of humility, perseverance, and the Holy Cross Alumni community.  The lessons that I have learned are things that I hope that you all can take with you before graduating.  Think long and hard about what you want to do, what will fulfill you, where you want to live, and what kind of work you will be proud of.  In nearly being out of college four years, I’m just now feeling like I’m heading down a path to fulfillment.  A Chu!  Chu!  Rah!  Rah! For Holy Cross!

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Connect with this story?

Learn more about the opportunities at Oracle here.

Alumni Guest Post: Priscilla Lam ’12

November 12th, 2012 by mklync13

Next up in our Alumni Guest Post series: Priscilla Lam ’12 discusses her role as a clinical research coordinator in the Center for Neuro-Oncology at the Dana-Farber Cancer Institute!

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Priscilla Lam ’12

I could not have been more ecstatic when I received a phone call from Dana-Farber Cancer Institute (Boston, MA) during senior week with an offer to be the new clinical research coordinator in the Center for Neuro-Oncology. Without any hesitation, I immediately accepted the job offer even though I was informed that the start date of my job would be June 4th (exactly 9 days after graduation!). Everything felt like a whirlwind, but I was very excited to begin a new chapter of my life in Boston.

It is hard to believe that I have been working at Dana-Farber for over four months now. Dana-Farber is an outpatient clinic that is directly connected to Brigham and Women’s Hospital (inpatient). I absolutely love working here. Sometimes it feels like I never left Holy Cross because I work with three other Holy Cross alums in my department and I am constantly running into Holy Cross grads from all years working in various disease centers at Dana-Farber.

The responsibilities of a clinical research coordinator differ slightly depending on the disease center. In Neuro, the majority of the patients I work with are Glioblastoma patients. I am responsible for knowing several clinical trials and being familiar with protocol requirements. Our primary responsibility is data entry and management. We are responsible for entering medical/surgical history information, lab values, concomitant medications, adverse events, etc. in the database for each clinical trial participant for sponsors to review. We have monitors (a representative hired by the sponsor, usually from a pharmaceutical company) come in once a month for every clinical trial to review our data and ensure that all data are properly documented and captured. They issue queries and we are required to answer these queries in a timely manner. Research coordinators are essentially the primary point person between the industry sponsor and the research team at Dana-Farber. We also have regulatory responsibilities such as submitting Serious Adverse Event reports to the Dana-Farber Internal Review Board and the industry sponsor. Other duties include preparing research tubes/kits and flow-sheets for nurses, shipping samples, requesting pathology, scheduling clinic visit appointments and MRIs, [and] communicating with patients, ordering labs, being in attendance when physicians screen/consent patients for potential trials, reviewing provider notes to ensure that there is proper source documentation for data, and organizing/prepping patient charts to be ready for monitor visits and future audits.

Most of the research coordinators work in the Longwood Galleria offices while clinic is in the Yawkey Building. Every day is different. This is not a typical 9-5pm job. Things come up spontaneously and each day is completely unpredictable. Generally, clinic days tend to be busier because that is when our patients come in for visits. I learn something new every day. This job can be challenging and demanding at times, but overall very rewarding. It is interesting to see research from a clinical perspective and being part of the research care team is fulfilling.

Clinical trials give patients a sense of hope. Clinical trials investigate specific experimental drugs not yet approved by the FDA and explore novel cancer therapies, as well as implement standard of care treatment in hopes of finding new and effective treatments for patients.

My favorite part of this job is being a contributing member of the research team and having the opportunity to experience full clinical exposure. I also take much pride in being able to work at an institute that offers state-of-the-art treatment for patients, with renowned physicians and experts on brain tumors, and a team of compassionate individuals consisting of neuro-oncologists, researchers, nurses, and PA. I could not have asked for a better place to be after graduating from Holy Cross. Everyday, I find myself inspired by patients, their families, and the support and care that clinicians provide to patients. This job has definitely helped reinforce my dreams of pursing a future career in medicine. I cannot thank the Holy Cross faculty, staff, and alumni network enough for opening my eyes to the opportunities that can be had working as a Clinical Research Coordinator at Dana-Farber.

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