Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Translating for the real world

Yesterday, I had the opportunity to attend a VISTA networking event for all of Southern California. There was a keynote speaker who gave us a crash course in networking, as well as a panel of VISTA alums who gave us the first-hand perspective.

It was interesting to see how to sell yourself to future employers using VISTA experience. It seems to require some translation. For example:

  • "Sits in on School Site Council and Advisory Board meetings while looking bored, daydreaming or playing with children" can be translated to "Advised and supported advisory boards and school leadership through monthly meetings and an active outreach program."
  • "Wrote bi-monthly newsletters by being a gigantic pain in the ass to any information source" becomes "Wrote parent newsletters, aggregating information from different departments across campus and translated and published on deadline.

One of my favorite quotes of the entire night:
"If you apply places where they already have a sense of what VISTA is, then it's going to look really good on an application because they know you'll work hard for nothing."

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