Posts from "June, 2010"

What Hiring Managers Wished You Knew


Your resume should answer one key question.

The vast majority of resumes I see read like a series of job descriptions, listing duties and responsibilities at each position the job applicant has held. But resumes that stand out do something very different. For each position, they answer the question: What did you accomplish in this job that someone else wouldn’t have?

New grads need work experience.

I receive all too many resumes from recent grads who have literally no work experience: nothing, not internships, not temp jobs, nothing at all. Find a way to get actual work experience before you leave school. Do internships every semester you are able, so that you have experience on your resume. Paid, unpaid, whatever it takes. If a part-time job of a few hours a week is all you have time for outside of your classes, that’s fine. Do that. No one will hire you? Find work experience as a volunteer–that counts too.

See more here:

The More Things Change…

Many recent posts have discussed how business leaders are noticing a gaping lack in the basic critical thinking and leadership skills of recent graduates.They’re saying that technical know-how is necessary, but so is a grounding in the liberal arts traditions. Many prestigious schools are encouraging their students to return to those traditions.

The NYT recently featured a story about how in the 1950’s the CEO of Bell Telephone helped set up a program to train his technicians in humanistic study. A sociologist of the time explains why: 
 “A well-trained man knows how to answer questions, they reasoned; an educated man knows what questions are worth asking.” Bell, then one of the largest industrial concerns in the country, needed more employees capable of guiding the company rather than simply following instructions or responding to obvious crises.

In 1952, Gillen took the problem to the University of Pennsylvania, where he was a trustee. Together with representatives of the university, Bell set up a program called the Institute of Humanistic Studies for Executives. More than simply training its young executives to do a particular job, the institute would give them, in a 10-month immersion program on the Penn campus, what amounted to a complete liberal arts education. There were lectures and seminars led by scholars from Penn and other colleges in the area — 550 hours of course work in total, and more reading, Baltzell reported, than the average graduate student was asked to do in a similar time frame.

Read more:

Top Twelve Entry-Level Employers

Check this list of companies hiring for entry-level positions. Several of them will hire humanities majors, but you’ll still most likely need an internship to be taken seriously:

Why You Need the Humanities to Combat the “Big Shaggy”

Conservative columnist David Brooks argues for the necessity of studying the humanities for understanding the vicissitudes and seeming irrationality of human behavior. Great books (novels, plays, philosophical treatises) explore “emotional veins” of human existence in ways that other “scientific” disciplines have difficulty explaining. He cites several recent examples of world-historical events that cannot be fully accounted for by conventional science, but that seem fairly predictable to those deeply familiar with the humanities. Read more here: