Reviewing resumes, making appointments, and being a personable advocate for Career Services to students in the Black Studies program are just some of the things that Demetria Hart, who goes by Demi, does as a Career Peer for Career Services.
She has also gained valuable experiences while working in the office, which has positioned her to learn and understand career and professional development tools and resources that she would not have known about otherwise.
She has had the opportunity to meet with employers at Mock Interview Day from prominent Cleveland companies including Care Alliance, RTA and City Year.
Through participating in these events, she discovered that they were not what she anticipated — they were better.
“I expected feedback about job related things and interviewing, but they all gave me feedback about how to present myself outside of the work, so that made the whole mock interview experience more impressionable for me.”
What does Demi wants student to know about Mock interview Day:
“Students come in thinking it’s going to be harsh. You don’t have to be so uptight about it or completely distraught over it. Just taking the initiative to come to the event makes you already more prepared than a lot of people who aren’t.”
In Demi’s own experience participating in mock interviews, her biggest takeaways were:
Stop being fearful that you are not good enough
When talking about your strengths and weaknesses, be honest about your weakness but then follow up with what you are doing to address or fix it
Think about what you are going to say and slow down while answering questions
She likes the fact that the interviews can “go off the page,” or off the topic of the interview questions and turn into real conversations, rather than feeling scripted or confined to the traditional interview format.
“Our conversations were informal which was great because that is what I really needed,” she said.
About her experience with Career Services:
“The biggest takeaway from this office is you have more opportunities than you think you do.”
Demi thinks that if students understood what they can get out of interacting with the Career Services office, they would understand how to apply the skills they already have.
Even if students have worked somewhere like Arby’s, Demi wants them to realize that they have some of the same qualifications that may be required at a professional job, and even a job they had never considered before. Transferable skills such as management, problem-solving, and being able to work well in teams are useful in any professional setting or industry.
“You wouldn’t even think that you have the same qualifications but you do, and it’s just about branching out.”
She was surprised to realize, “I am a history major and I met with someone from NASA saying ‘you could work at NASA because you have research, writing, and interpersonal skills.’”
“What I have learned from the staff in Career Services is that I have more opportunities and skills than I ever thought I did.”
More about Demi
Demi has been working for Career Services as a Career Peer since August 2018. She is majoring in Black Studies and History and plans to graduate in May 2020.
She is also curious about science, nature and the universe and hopes to create films or documentaries accentuating and celebrating different cultures and demographics across the world.
More about Career Peers
A Career Peer’s role is to make sure the front end of the office runs smoothly by managing student, faculty, and employers’ requests via phone, email, and walk-ins. Career Peers serve as ambassadors to other students on behalf of the Career Services office, helping their peers understand all of the professional development tools, resources, and strategies they need to be successful as aspiring and evolving professionals.