Financial Media Company Bound
The technical courses didn't disappoint me, either: We got extensive training in using Microsoft Office Suite, and spent 14 weeks studying hardware (the actual, physical parts of a computer) and network operations. A final exam required me to take apart and then quickly reassemble a fully functioning computer. By then, this felt like second nature.
For my internship, I began working as a service technician in the information systems department of the financial media company, where I helped other employees with computer issues. Thanks to my classes, I knew how to communicate effectively with my co-workers and employers, which is just as important as technical ability.
I also learned the art of networking, or building connections with other people. This can range from asking someone you meet for their business card, to working with a group of coworkers on a big project. Networking means understanding that when you interact with one person, you are actually building a connection with everyone that person knows. So, if my coworker happens to know the owner of another large company, she might be able to put in a good word for me if I decide to seek employment at that company.
Before the program, my relationships were strictly social. In fact, the idea of using connections for my own gain was off-putting. But I learned that networking is a natural part of the business world.
Ready and Able
Maybe most important, I learned to see my internship as not just a learning experience, but also a six-month interview. I treated it that way every day I came to work, and it paid off: a few weeks before my internship was set to end, I received a full-time job offer. I am a PC Support Helpdesk Technician. I proved that I had the drive and skills necessary to make it as a full-time employee, and was lucky that this company was ready to hire at this time.
As a new hire, I have a lot of opportunity to advance in the ranks. Performing well at my job will help me achieve this, but so will going back to school and getting a diploma. Even though it helped me land a job, the program also showed me the importance of education to career advancement. I will be attending night classes in the fall.
These days, I notice that many of my friends are like I was two years ago: motivated and intelligent, but unsure of what they want to do for a living, and not yet ready to work in a professional environment. Since then, thanks to a strong training program, I have come a long way: from not knowing how to send a proper job application, to landing a good job.