November 10, 2017
Navigating the professional world is difficult. What do you want to do after college? What if you’ve been in the workforce for a while and are ready for a new step? No matter where you are in your professional journey, Kappa Delta can help you navigate the professional world like a pro.
When I decided to go to graduate school, I interviewed for graduate assistantships. On my first interview weekend, I had day full of ten 30-minute interviews in a large, loud room where 50 different interviews were happening at once. While this hectic environment was very overwhelming for most of my peers, I felt fully prepared because of my experience in recruitment. Despite the atmosphere, I was able to focus on the actual interviews.
I left my first interview thinking I might have talked about my sorority too much. But, for every question they asked, I had a relevant example from my Kappa Delta experience. In my second interview, my interviewer turned out to be a Kappa Delta alumna. She mentioned this within the first five minutes, and I immediately felt at ease. (Note: I didn’t get that job, but the interviewer is now a great friend of mine!) In my fifth interview, I closed the conversation by telling my non-Greek interviewers that I recognized I didn’t have the direct experience they were looking for, but that my experience in KD is very transferable, which prepared me to succeed in the position. I was offered that position, and accepted it!
As you think about your resume and upcoming interviews — whether it’s for an internship, a first job or a third job — here are a few tips to best showcase yourself and your Kappa Delta experience:
Prepare your resume. Always make sure to include your membership in Kappa Delta on your resume! In a leadership or involvement section of your resume, include any appointed, council or committee positions you’ve held and focus on your actions and accomplishments. As T-shirt chairman, you did much more than “ordered T-shirts for the chapter.” You managed a budget of how much? You collaborated with how many vendors? You worked with others to market the brand of Kappa Delta through merchandise. As a standards board member, how have you held your peers accountable? No matter your role in KD, you have gained skills that are worth marketing, so don’t sell yourself short! For council positions, make sure to check out our tips to translating council positions to your resumeopens PDF file for additional help.
Enhance your resume. Use your university’s career center, CAB or another sister to look over your resume and provide feedback. It’s likely that they’ll remember something you accomplished that you might have forgotten to include yourself!
Brainstorm your best successes. In recruitment, we focus on storytelling to sell KD to PNMs. In the professional world, storytelling is critical, too! Prepare specific examples of the skills you’ve gained in KD to share during an interview. These examples are probably not going to be explicitly stated on your resume. When an interviewer asks how you navigate conflict, don’t just provide your philosophy, but have an example ready about how you’ve navigated conflict when living in the house or when serving on a committee, including how you made it through that conflict productively. What role have you played on a team? When have you had to make an unpopular decision? How do you manage time? All of these popular interview questions can be answered with an example from your Kappa Delta experience.
Use your KD network. No matter your field, there are certain to be KD alumnae who are excelling in it. Reach out to them for an informational interview, help in finding open positions or assistance getting your foot in the door. Maybe you need a reference or letter of recommendation from a former advisor – ask for it! Make sure to pay it forward one day when you have the opportunity to help out a fellow KD.
Look to your sisters for support! This is not an easy process, and you don’t need to do it alone. Use your sisters to provide an extra set of eyes on your resume, pump you up before your interview, cheer you on after inevitably receiving disappointing news and celebrate your success when you finally land that perfect position.
Kappa Delta has prepared you for the professional world in more ways than you realize. Reflect on how you’ve grown because of KD, don’t sell yourself short, and last but not least, go confidently!
Chapter Services Coordinator