Job Searching in the time of Coronavirus

The NYU Wasserman Center is open and available to support you in your job or internship search during this uncertain time. Find a list of helpful articles and resources below, and check back often as new content will be added weekly. Schedule a virtual career coaching appointment on Handshake today!


Virtual Resources (Non-NYU)

NYU Wasserman Resources

Linkedin Learning Courses Useful For Job Searching

Interviewing in the Time of Coronavirus

Interviewing for new a job is stressful enough—without the possibility that a quick handshake and finger to face can result in contracting a novel virus. So now, in the age of coronavirus (a.k.a. COVID-19), it’s understandable that job seekers’ stress levels are on the rise.

On the bright side, many companies have altered their recruiting efforts to take into account the spread of coronavirus, significantly minimizing those stress levels. LinkedIn, Amazon, Facebook, Microsoft, PwC, Intel, and others are now relying on video and phone interviews in lieu of face-to-face interviewing.

However, scores of other companies haven’t (yet) altered their hiring and recruiting practices. So what do you do if you have an in-person interview and coronavirus is spreading in your city? Here are some tips on how to handle this touchy situation.`        

1. How to handle the handshake

Across the world, to help stop the spread of the virus, in place of handshakes people are starting to greet each other with fist bumps, elbow bumps, even foot bumps. But should you really hold out your wingtip or heel if your interviewer goes in for the handshake and you don’t feel comfortable going palm-to-palm?

Maybe the best practice is to follow the lead of the University of Rochester’s career center. It recently advised students to avoid handshaking, suggesting that students “politely decline with an explanation rather than an informal fist bump.” Said “explanation” could look something like this (but put it into your own words): I’m just worried about coronavirus spreading and want to do my part to help minimize its spread.

The advice was meant to lessen the stress of Rochester students, who might feel pressured to shake hands. Hopefully it will minimize your stress, too. Sure, it could be a bit awkward to hold back your hand if one’s extended toward you, but that awkwardness far outweighs the possible negative outcomes of a firm shake.

2. When and where to wash up

Given that a vigorous 20-second handwash is one of the best (and easiest) ways to minimize the spread of coronavirus, make it a point to wash your hands at least twice when interviewing in person. Once before your interview. A second time right after your interview.

This means you need to arrive early enough to your interview to have time to visit the restroom and wash up. It also means don’t be afraid to ask the receptionist (and/or your interviewer) if you could use the restroom before and after your interview. Note that since interviews can be stressful and nerve-wracking, your hands tend to go to places—like your face—when you get nervous, making clean hands before an interview highly important.

Also, remember to follow protocols you’re likely following elsewhere: using a knuckle or elbow (instead of fingertips) on digital buttons found in elevators and other parts of offices, using a wrist or elbow (instead of palms) to open doors, and refraining from touching surfaces (like desks, tables, and kitchen counters) if you don’t have to.

3. What to bring, in addition to your resume

You know to always arrive to interviews with a few extra copies of your resume. Now, ideally, you should also arrive with two other things: a travel hand sanitizer (with more than 60 percent alcohol content) and a pack of travel tissues.

The sanitizer will come in handy if soap and water aren’t easily accessible, and the tissues will come in handy if you need to cough, sneeze, or scratch an itch (on your face or near it). Tissues can also come in handy if you need to open a door (say, to a restroom) that seems to be a high risk area and there’s really no way around not touching it with your hand.

4. When and how to schedule and reschedule

Typically, when it comes to scheduling interviews, hiring managers will give you a few different day and time options to choose from. So, if you live in a busy city and rely on public transportation, choose a time during off-peak commuting hours­—late morning or midday instead of early morning or end of day—to minimize your exposure to large groups of people. This avoidance of large groups is part of a practice called “social distancing,” which has been recommended by this epidedemiologist and other public healthcare experts to minimize coronavirus spread.

Also, it’s worth noting that if you have any symptoms of coronavirus, by all means reach out to your contact at the company you’re interviewing with to reschedule your interview. And depending on the severity of those symptoms (if they’re mild), in place of an in-person interview, you could ask your contact if a phone or video interview (more on those below) would be possible.

5. How to prepare if things get worse

If coronavirus continues to spread in the U.S., it’s likely that, among other things, video interviewing will become the norm nationwide (even before the arrival of the virus, video interviewing was on the rise). This means that, if you haven’t already, it’s a good time to brush up on your video/Skype interviewing skills.

To that end, we have you covered. Have an upcoming virtual interview? Read up on strategies for nailing the video interview, essential tips for video and Skype interviews, and surviving a one-way video interview, to help you succeed. You can also refresh your memory on nailing a phone screen interview, which could become more common as well.

A final note

Given that the situation with respect to the spread of coronavirus is constantly changing, it’s a good idea, before your interview, to check the CDC website and your local government website (like this one in New York City) for any important updates that could affect your commute or interview itself.

It’s also a good idea, before your interview, to ask your contact person at the company you’re interviewing with if there’s anything you should know regarding coronavirus spread: Are there any specific protocols you should know about before arriving? Is there anything you should do or not do while you’re at the company’s office?

A good way to think about it is this: when it comes to interviews—especially now—it’s always best to over-prepare and to be safe than sorry.

A Day in the Life of a Programmatic Trading Manager

We’re MiQ, a programmatic media partner for marketers and agencies. We connect data from multiple sources to do interesting, exciting, business-problem-solving things for our clients. We’re experts in data science, analytics and programmatic trading, and we’re always ready to react and solve challenges quickly, to make sure our clients are always spending their media investments on the right things in the right places.

Our business keeps growing and our company keeps getting better because we keep hiring smart new people. People like… Saral Nigam, a Programmatic Trading Manager. Check out Saral’s story below to learn about how he started his career in programmatic trading.

  1. Where are you based?

I’m based in MiQ’s New York office. 

  1. What year did you graduate and what was your major in school?

I studied at the University of Maryland and  graduated in 2014 with a degree in Economics and Finance.

  1. How did you start a career in this industry?

Right before the summer of 2013, I was told by my previous employer that they didn’t have enough budget to bring me back for the summer. This was late in the school year, so I was scrambling to find an internship. I must have applied to over 15 jobs and luckily got one call back from AOL. They’d posted their internship late and I was able to land the job in the beginning of June. After working at AOL for the summer, I was able to turn that internship into a full time job the following summer. Before that summer, I had no idea this industry even existed. I always saw myself heading down the finance route.

  1. How did your first job jumpstart your current career path?

Starting my career at AOL couldn’t have been any more fun or fulfilling. The culture at AOL led to friends that I will have for a lifetime and a skillset that I will never forget. Working at a demand side platform (DSP) gave me client communication skills and a great understanding of the technicalities of the industry. I was able to really get into the weeds of how to best use a DSP, including the best ways to optimize campaigns and how to communicate what was happening to a client. Outside of that, working at AOL put me in position to understand the whole industry because they were a publisher, and also owned a supply side platform (SSP), an attribution model, and a data management platform (DMP).

  1. What motivates and keeps you going at work?

There are two parts to my job – the trading itself, and managing my trading team. 

As a manager, seeing the people in my team grow, learn and succeed is incredibly motivating. Being able to see associates come straight in from college and grow to be successful in the company is one of the most fulfilling feelings you can have as a manager. 

And for the trading itself, when you’re hitting your clients’ performance goals and you’re able to grow an account, you feel such a strong sense of accomplishment. To do this, we often have to do unique and creative things, to outperform our competitors. And it’s great to be able to help advertisers earn a higher return on ad spend, and increase revenue for MiQ at the same time. When everything is going well and clicking for an advertiser, it’s clear you’ve done well and succeeded.

  1. What are your responsibilities as a programmatic trading manager?

As a trader manager, I’m responsible for managing the Northeast Independent business portfolio. My goal is to maintain high standards of performance across all campaigns, while delivering campaign budgets profitably. I also develop processes to keep our business in a sustainable phase.

  1. Tell me about your favorite project at MiQ?

One of the biggest gaps I saw when I came into the company was the raw learning and training process for trading. Trading is an art that takes 9-12 months to really learn and start to master, and the initial two or three months need to be really structured. Within the first six months of working at MiQ, I worked with our product trainer to write a ‘guru book’ for traders to learn everything from the basics of the industry to some complicated trading topics. Several years later, about 90% of the content still holds true because of the nature of trading. Even though a lot of our process has been updated, the basic learnings and needs are still there.

  1. What advice would you give to someone looking to start a career in programmatic trading? 

The most important attribute for a trader or anyone in this industry is willingness to learn – and use what you learn in a logical manner. This entire industry is made up of weird connections, highlighted by the lumascape. If you’re able to understand how all the different parts of the industry come together, it’s easy to fall in love with what we do, while doing something great yourself. My major piece of advice would be to talk to as many people as possible. There are so many interesting people with different views in the industry.

MiQ is launching our first-ever internship opportunity this summer! If programmatic trading or client services sounds exciting to you, be sure to apply to MiQ’s Programmatic Fellowship (MPF) here:

Wasserman Global Peer Spotlight: Rosamaria Diaz

By: Rosamaria Diaz, Wasserman Global Peer, NYU London (Fall 2019)

In Fall 2019 I had the opportunity to work as a Wasserman Global Peer while studying away in NYU London. My experience as a Wasserman Global Peer allowed me to be able to help others through effective communication. Given that applying to jobs and internships can sometimes be tedious and stressful, I used the communication skills I gained from my prior office work experience to support fellow students through this process. This experience working as a Wasserman Global Peer experience allowed me to strengthen these communication skills as well as practice presentations and direct student interaction that will likely be useful in my jobs to come.

One thing I learned while working as a global peer was that many students come from a wide diversity of backgrounds. Therefore, when going through their resumes I focused on tailoring their experiences into a story that could clearly tell the ways in which they have arrived to where they stand now. It was really interesting to see the different paths and experiences that have shaped the students that are at NYU. In addition, it was helpful for me to reflect on my own experiences and the ways in which they have shaped my own path. For example, while in London I have had the opportunity a lot about a culture that used to be a world empire. My time here has had its ups and downs, similar to any other experience. Getting used to the British English, or to the different culture dynamics, was interesting to me since I had never experienced them at home and a unique challenge. Positive elements of adjusting to this culture have included experiencing life in a city that serves as cultural and financial hub that attracts a wide variety of people. Ultimately, I would recommend doing a semester abroad and using the NYU resources to experience new cultures and new cities. Especially since NYU has such a global network – you might end up living there!

Working as a Global Peer has allowed me to see the different paths and interests that individuals have. In addition, talking to students about what their plans for the future are allowed me to reflect and find my interest in going to grad school for urban development. This experience has helped me have a more clear sense of the path that I want to take after graduation and the focus that I will approach. For me, this has been a chance to see that sometimes we are not aware of the small details that might be very helpful as we approach our futures, and how far taking the extra step to prepare can go.

Wasserman Global Peer Spotlight: Lizzie DeLeone

By: Lizzie DeLeone, Wasserman Global Peer, NYU Florence (Fall 2019)

If someone told me a year ago that I would be spending my first year of college away in a foreign country, I would have thought they were insane. When I found out I was to spend the whole first year abroad in Florence, Italy, I wasn’t sure how to react. I was grateful for the opportunity and excited to live in Italy, but worried about being so far from home and nervous about making friends.

We moved in on August 26th, 2019 and orientation week began. One of those days, we had the first of many immigration appointments for a special document needed to study in Italy. We met with our residence hall manager outside our dorm, and she guided us to the bus stop. As she’s explaining how the ATAF bus system works and where we get off, I struggled to picture myself able to do this alone. I come from a small town in the midwest where public transportation is almost nonexistent, so the proposition of trying to navigate it in a separate country in a different language was daunting to say the least. As we reach our stop and get off, she explains we’ll walk this route all the time and become familiar with the whole area. I was skeptical.

A few activities helped me with this life transition into a completely different culture from my own. The first was volunteering at “Le Curandaie” every week to dance with children and teens who have disabilities. This was an especially rewarding and close to home experience for me, and I would recommend it to anyone. I was able to form relationships with these kids and speak to them in their language, and I will never forget my time there.

Being a Global Peer for the Wasserman Center was also an important aspect of my time at NYU Florence. It allowed me to get to know my peers better, all while helping them with cover letter writing, resume building, and general job search inquiries. I learned how to be a leader and perform tasks given to me with confidence I didn’t have before.

These opportunities where I was able to reach out of my comfort zone and try new experiences reduced much of the stress I started with, and allowed Florence to feel like a second home.

ICYMI: Designing Your Path as a Change-Maker

By Caroline LeKachman

Hi everyone! My name is Caroline, and I am a sophomore studying Applied Psychology, as well as a Wasserman Career Ambassador. I had the opportunity to attend Designing Your Path as a Change-maker: Pursuing Equity, Inclusion, and Social Impact Through Work. Through speakers, panels, and round-table networking, the event provided me with a lot of useful advice regarding how I can pursue social impact throughout my career. If you did not have a chance to come to the event, read on for some of my key takeaways!

President Andrew Hamilton set the tone for the event with his opening address, highlighting NYU as an institution with a long history of equity, inclusion, and social impact. Referring to NYU as a “private institution in the public service,” Hamilton noted that the day before the event (February 10) was the 59th anniversary of the day Martin Luther King, Jr. came to address NYU on the topic of social justice. King had said, “Every step toward the goal of justice requires. . .the tireless exertions and passionate concern of dedicated individuals.” Being reminded of NYU’s legacy of social justice affirmed my idea that every NYU student, myself included, has the power to make a difference.

The fact that many of the guests at the event were NYU alumni also reinforced this idea in my mind. It was great to hear from working professionals who were once in my shoes at NYU and have since led successful social impact careers. For instance, keynote speaker Jessica González-Rojas, former executive director for the National Center for Latina Reproductive Health, began her journey at the NYU Wagner School of Public Service. During her time at the National Center for Latina Reproductive Health, she explored the intersectionality of reproductive justice and sought to create social impact by providing Latina women with reproductive resources. In describing her work at the center, González-Rojas shed light on how courage drove her to succeed in her career. Courage, she explained, was her word for 2020, as well as a starting point for any career in social impact. As a young Latina woman and child of an immigrant, González-Rojas recognized that she was not the stereotypical image of a leader. Although she faced various roadblocks and lawsuits, she did not allow those barriers to stop her from pursuing her goals to make society a more equitable and inclusive place. Now running for public office in the New York State Assembly, González-Rojas recognized the she was taking a risk in her career. However, she reminded students that courage would get her through it and is necessary in any endeavor to fight for what you believe in.

The panel that followed echoed this common theme of courage and provided further advice on how to get from NYU to a career with social impact. For example, Cory Green from How Our Lives Link Altogether! (“HOLLA!”) stated that the moment when he had the courage to open up about his identity as a formerly incarcerated individual at NYU was the moment when he began to create change. He began speaking with other NYU students about the needs of people like himself and ultimately ran protests to ban the box on job applications that required applicants to identify their criminal record. This experience paved the way for Cory to found the organization “HOLLA!”, which provides programming for urban youth of color to interrupt the system of social injustice and punishment that he himself had experienced.

Besides the panel, hearing from other NYU alumni during the round table networking portion of the event provided me with more helpful insights. I had the opportunity to speak with Victoria Shire, Vice President of Here to Here, a workforce development program that creates mini businesses for Bronx students to gain work experience before graduating high school. Shire provided us with post-grad advice and opened my eyes to the sector of Public Administration. As an Applied Psychology major, I have always thought I would pursue a career that involved one-on-one client support as a means to provide social change. So, hearing about how Shire created change by running systems at the top provided me with a different perspective that I had not yet considered.

Overall, this event was an excellent opportunity to learn more about achieving social impact in a career, and I hope you were able to catch a glimpse from this summary of how informative and inspiring the event was!

Wasserman Global Peer Spotlight: Katie Leung

The Case of The “Buchta”
By: Katie Leung, Wasserman Global Peer, NYU Prague

Europe caught me by surprise. As someone who has never been to Europe before, I had no idea what to expect. Maybe there will be some beautiful architecture paired with sparkling rivers. Maybe there will be delicious traditional food. Once I arrived in Prague, I realized I was right about both speculations. However, what I did not see coming were the difficulties I would encounter with a population that was still emerging from the shadows of a period of darkness and oppression. Going from Nazi to Communist rule, and finally achieving democracy and freedom in 1989, Czechs initially present themselves as cold and overly direct on first contact. I found it difficult to adjust to an environment that seemed so distant and closed off from me. As my brilliant music professor, Professor Tony Ackerman, puts it, Czech culture can be compared to a “buchta”. “Buchtas” are traditional Czech pastries featuring a thick doughy outside with a small, but tasty, inside filling. Often, many people become frustrated because it requires such patience and persistence to bite through the doughy layer to get to the sweet part. I, too, initially only saw the “spiky” demeanor that Czechs offered to me. However, as my study abroad experience went on, I soon got my first taste of how “sweet” the Czech people and my study abroad experience can be. 

As the Wasserman Peer in Prague, I was offered the opportunity to get in touch with and speak to many students of different nationalities, different backgrounds, and with different professional needs. This has allowed me to learn how to truly keep my mind open to new ideas and new ways of thinking. Alongside with my experience of living here in the Czech Republic, engaging with others as a Wasserman representative taught me how to best identify and relate with others no matter how different their backgrounds may be from mine. Learning how to connect with my fellow classmates and being able to guide them on the path of career preparation made me realize that a good leader can teach, but an exemplary leader is capable of truly unearthing and developing the hidden “buchta” strengths of his or her teammates. 

As someone who is interested in pursuing a career in business, my Wasserman role this semester has further prepared me to be able to effectively work in a team, which often may involve many diverse minds and ideas. Having the flexibility and openness to people around me is a key to success no matter where I work, and the organizational and planning skills I’ve gained from hosting events have also been invaluable. My study abroad experience this fall will certainly remain with me for the remainder of my time at NYU, and even beyond university. 

“Buchtas” are simply hidden opportunities that we may overlook everyday – but I’ve certainly gotten a taste of what sweetness awaits me if I am willing to put in the patience and dedication. 

Growing Trends in Global Markets: Insights from Fletcher Knight

It’s the most wonderful time of the year at Fletcher Knight as we reflect on 2019 and look forward to what 2020 will bring. We are filled with anticipation as we turn to thought leaders and forecast the coming trends for the new year. For the FK team, keeping track of trends across different industries allows us to create the future for our clients. It allows us to be aware of what is going on around the globe, keeping us agile in a fast-paced world. We are excited for what is to come, and even more thrilled to live in a city where we can experience these firsthand. Although New York is an inspiring city, we continue to focus our attention on global research markets and towards another hub for trends across the globe—Asia. In the health and fashion worlds, we are currently following streetwear inspired by Asian culture and wellness centers located in South-East Asia.

Takashi Murakami is one of the world’s most famous contemporary artists. Likewise, he produces some of the most coveted Japanese art-inspired streetwear designs. In early November at ComplexCon in LA, Murakami’s famed Kaikai Kiki flower in the form of $50K bejeweled pendants created by Ben Baller, sold out in four minutes by the likes of Kid Cudi and Lil Yachty. A forthcoming subculture of Asian streetwear is taking on a feminist approach to style. Gundi, which in Hindi is an expression used for women who are outspoken and believe in women’s liberation, is now the name for an empowering feminist streetwear brand, Gundi Studios, created by New York art director, Natasha Sumant. What started out as “Gundi” printed on pins and sold with vintage jackets is now a collection of aari, zari and cutdana decorative techniques in a modern streetwear form, handmade in India and filling the void of the lack of representation of South Asian women in streetwear. Although his prices may be high for the average person considering a purchase of his merchandise, Murakami draws his ingenuity from Superflat, so we see his inspiration everywhere. 

The excitement surrounded by snatching a desired limited item creates a buzz. The idea that simple-looking pieces can hold value based on the amounts available, is what puts the hype in hypebeasts. Posting your purchase to Instagram amplifies your status, regardless if it’s the newest Kiks Tyo drop or a luxurious retreat to Six Senses Qing Cheng in Chengdu, Sichuan. So, if your daydreams are otherwise filled with travelling to beautiful destinations in order to gain peace and serenity rather than saving images on Instagram of streetwear inspo, consider planning your next vacation in the Asia-Pacific. 

Asia-Pacific is the world’s fastest-growing inbound travel market, currently ranking second to Europe.2 As the fastest growing wellness tourism market, wellness trips in the Asia-Pacific region has jumped 33 percent in the last two years and isn’t slowing. Vice president of research at the Global Wellness Institute, Beth McGroarty, says the market is projected to nearly double from 2017–2022: from $137 billion to $252 billion.3 This growth is due to both inbound and internal tourism. In recent Fletcher Knight consumer research, young managerial office workers have talked about their reluctance to take vacations, especially during their early career, but this is starting to shift. Tourism from white collars tired of bustling outbound tourism are a driving force for their local wellness retreats; the young Chinese population favor and value travelling for health preservation.4 With an overall rising aspiration of wellness destinations for successful Chinese consumers, it will be interesting to see how this translates to mainstream attitudes and behaviors.

Often ahead of the trend curve, looking to Asia can be telling for what’s on the rise in other regions of the world, whether in fashion and health, or even food or beauty. Gaining insight with an open mind from another portion of the world allows us to grow and expand by being influenced by other cultures. These two areas, wellness centers and streetwear, are the tip of the iceberg. Trends are always evolving and growing, you never know what will gain popularity in the future. The anticipation of what’s next is what keeps us going. 

 To learn more about Fletcher Knight’s trend outlooks, click here.

Wasserman Global Peer Spotlight: Emily Gómez

By: Emily Gómez, CAS ’22, Wasserman Global Peer, NYU Madrid

This past semester, I had the opportunity study abroad at NYU Madrid. During that time, I was able to connect with the local culture through my homestay and internship experiences. I interned at a Spanish NGO and was able to form relationships with my coworkers and develop a stronger sense of what I want my career path to look like.

As a Wasserman Global Peer, I was able to assist my peers in their pursuits of spring and summer internships, by helping them with both their resumes and cover letters. It was rewarding to be able to help my peers, and hopefully alleviate a bit of the stress that they were feeling. Though many aspects of study abroad were external (ie. learning how to navigate a new environment and a different culture), I found that the internal changes, and lessons I learned from study abroad are what I will carry with me for the rest of my life.

Spain taught me above all else: be honest. This is a cultural difference that our academic coordinators have been telling us since day one, and it’s true- Spanish people are really honest. Their sincerity comes out in all aspects of life, and after living in Spain for the past 4 months, I’ve reflected on this cultural trait and now have a deeper appreciation for honesty, particularly with oneself. Though study abroad is an amazing experience, it is very important to be honest with oneself- I’ve had to evaluate and reevaluate my priorities often this past semester.

Finding the balance between traveling, schoolwork, budgeting my money, and my internship was quite tricky. For me, I began to feel like I found my solid ground in Madrid when I asked myself: do I like what I’m doing? Is my internship satisfying? Do I like my classes? I realized that though the workload was high and at times I would get stressed, I was learning about subjects I was passionate about and interning at an NGO that I felt was doing really important work. Once I reflected on my situation instead of running through the motions, I felt motivated and excited for the future. I’m very glad to have been able to experience the homestay, worked at theSpanish NGO, and been able to service my peers.

Thank you Wasserman and NYU Madrid!

Your internship just ended. Now what?

By: Bailey Irelan, Communications Specialist at Hot Paper Lantern

After a successful internship, it’s all too easy to slip back into your normal routine and let the connections and work you put in fade into the background. Making the most of an internship experience goes far beyond your time at the company. Here are three things you can do to make sure you get the full benefit of your internship – after you walk out of the company’s office for the last time. A little continued effort and planning can ensure the hard work you put in during your internship doesn’t go to waste.


Most internships are whirlwind experiences, an intense time period where you’re absorbing so much information and pushing yourself to perform at the best of your ability. Take the time after your internship to reflect on your experience and narrow down on your takeaways. What type of task most energized you? What did you keep putting off until the last minute? Was the size of the company too large and overwhelming, or too small and stifling? Analyzing what you experienced and what made it great or lacking in an area will help inform your career path. 

Keep up to date within the world you worked in

Keep track of the fruits of your labor. Did the product launch you helped plan go off without a hitch and bring in media hits? Note that for your own resume. You had a part in it, so own it. It’s a good idea to periodically read the trade publications for the industry as well. Keeping up to date on new competitors, changes in leadership teams and shifts in the overall industry will serve you well as you start interviewing for entry-level jobs. It will also help steer you toward – or away from – the right companies for your values and skills. 

Take “keep in touch” seriously

Maintaining the relationships you built while at the company is the single most important action you can take to get the most out of the time you put in during your internship. When people said, “keep in touch,” as you left, they meant it. However, the ball is in your court. It’s up to you to reach out every so often and check in with the people with whom you worked. Maintain the relationships well ahead of when you think you’ll need a favor from them, whether that’s serving as a reference or to be the first person they think of when an open position becomes available.

The cliché is overused, but true: finding what you don’t want to do is just as important as finding what you do want to do. While you are in school, your time is limited and it’s imperative that you use every opportunity to find one more piece of the puzzle you’re building as your future career. The connections you make during internships may prove to be the most valuable assets as you enter the job market. It’s all too easy to get busy with school after an internship, but you won’t regret reflecting on your experience, reading up on the industry, and most importantly, building on the connections you made. They could be the difference in landing your dream job. 

Hot Paper Lantern is a NYC-based marketing and communications agency that helps brands launch, grow, adapt, and transform.

3 Tips for the Transition from Full-Time Student to Full-Time Professional

By Tiffany Li

A couple of years ago as a senior at NYU, I was pretty nervous about the prospect of being a full-time working professional versus an intern/student. Would it be an easy transition? Would I get along with my co-workers? What would my workload be like? I will say that the wonderful thing is that when you start working, even though you may not be in school anymore, you never stop learning, whether it’s learning technical skills like how to build a dashboard in Tableau or learning how to design a beautiful slide deck. 

This post may not answer all the questions running through your mind, but here are 3 tips to help you prepare for this transition: 

Get ready for your work routine
Your hours will vary heavily depending on the job, because you could have a standard 9am-6pm job or one that’s 6am-5pm or even 4pm-12am. Either way, you should ensure that you prepare yourself and are ready for that change. Try to set a routine and establish a pattern of balance before you start working (if you know what your hours are going to be)! In my role, although I usually end by 6pm, sometimes I have calls with marketers from around the world like Japan and Singapore, which results in hopping on calls at 8pm or 10pm. Having a desk in your room or having a go-to cafe to do work will definitely come in handy. 

Prepare yourself for rush hour commutes
This won’t be as easy as walking from your dorm to campus anymore, but thank goodness for public transit! Rush hour can be rough, especially on certain lines like the 4/5/6, and sometimes there are delays. Get ahead of the curve by using MYmta or CityMapper or Transit (three of my favorite transit apps) to see real-time info on when your train is coming. IBM Marketing is actually close to campus though (Astor Place and Union Square), so it almost feels like I’ve never left!

Expect your social schedule to change
Your friends won’t all be on campus anymore, and you’ll likely be spread out in terms of where you live/work, not to mention you’ll have different jobs and therefore work hours, but you can still make time! Plus, think of all the new people you’ll meet at work. When I was a summer intern at IBM, our program had IBM-organized outings like bowling, but we also organized karaoke and game night, and when I started full-time, my new hire class organized a ski trip in the Poconos. Also, don’t forget to pick up hobbies to ground yourself in activities outside of work (ex: learning pottery, training for marathons, teaching yourself how to play a new instrument).

Written by: Tiffany Li, Marketing Analytics Consultant for IBM. She is a digital marketing professional with a history of working in the community development finance/media and entertainment/tech industries. She graduated from NYU in 2017 with a Bachelor’s Degree in Marketing and Computing & Data Science, and a minor in the Business of Entertainment, Media, and Technology (BEMT). In her current role at IBM, she sits at corporate headquarters in NYC and supports the Performance Marketing discipline, which uses business analytics, data science, visualization and data management skills to help marketers target the right audience, with the best content and an optimal marketing mix to drive outcomes. Tiffany focuses on using analytics to provide data-driven insights and optimize IBM’s marketing campaigns end-to-end, from the web user experience to sales alignment.

IBM is an American multinational information technology company that has innovated the world for over 100 years. Here at IBM Marketing, we’re outcomes-oriented, client centric, and agile to the core. Want to learn more about IBM Marketing and how you can join through our internship program? Visit

Wasserman Global Peer Spotlight: Margaux Trexler

A small fish in a big pond, and very glad to be one
By: Margaux Trexler, Wasserman Global Peer, NYU Paris

After living in Baltimore, Maryland, for my whole life, the idea of moving to Paris for a year was undeniably daunting. Not only did I not speak French, but Paris is about four times larger than my hometown, with a population surpassing two million. I feared getting swept up in a city of unknown faces speaking a foreign tongue, as unfamiliar to those around me as they were to me.

My premonition rang true as I started my first semester at NYU Paris. I found myself being jostled around in the metro, knowing practically no one as I did my grocery shopping or went to the gym, aside from the group of friends I made during orientation week. This was a huge culture shock for me, since back home, I usually ran into at least five people I knew every time I left my house. I struggled to communicate basic sentences to native French speakers, such as “do you have almond milk?” and never failed to say “sorry!” instead of “pardon” when I bumped into someone. Time and time again, I was unable to execute basic tasks that would be second nature back home and grew more frustrated with myself as the days went by.

But as the weeks went on, I realized my outlook on my new life in Paris was terribly flawed. It wasn’t me, it was my mind that was keeping me from thriving and taking in all I could amongst these new challenges. 

After living in Paris for four months, I’ve realized that living in a new city is bound to present obstacles, and it is unrealistic to assume that one can manage to defeat every problem presented. I still find myself unable to say everything I want to in French and do once and a while fall back into my very American “sorry!” But even though tribulations may arise, by finding a community where you feel you belong, and people that support you, I believe you can make yourself a home in the busiest of cities.

Through my work with the Wasserman Global Peers, I found that the best way to make a new place more familiar is by helping and working with others. Through my preparation for my Cover Letter and Resume Workshop, I talked to students I had never spoken to before while I gave them advice on their career planning and their future. As I want to be a journalist in the future, communicating with others would be a huge part of my job. My work as a Global Peer strengthened my confidence in doing so tremendously. 

I also started volunteering with some other NYU students at an organization called Serve the City, where we distribute food to the local homeless around Paris. Through my time with Serve the City, I made connections with people I would never have met otherwise, heard countless life stories, and spent my time doing something meaningful in my new home. I may be a small fish in a big pond, but small fish can still do a lot of good. And those people who I thought were strangers? They aren’t so different from me, after all.