Writing Is Hard: A Practical Guide to Writing an Article, from Professionals

Contributed by:  Longneck & Thunderfoot: A full service creative agency hiring graphic designers and writers in their NYC office. 

When you write, you need to do two things that don’t always play well together: organize your thoughts and write them down. This is a guide to doing both as painlessly (and effectively!) as possible.

Writing is hard, partly because it involves two concurrent processes:

  1. Developing latent ideas into a form that people can understand.
  2. Getting them down onto the page in a meaningful structure.

So, trying to write an article from top to bottom, start to finish, is essentially writing it in exactly the wrong way with respect to developing your ideas. If you start with your introduction, you’ll be introducing ideas you haven’t developed yet.

Here’s a guide to shortcutting the process, thereby avoiding the time that might otherwise be wasted by, for example, trying to write your article intro from a ‘cold start’ (having not organized your ideas beforehand).

Structure

Top to bottom, the standard structure for articles meant to be published digitally looks like this:

  • Standfirst
  • Introduction
  • Body
  • Conclusion

This is more or less exactly the wrong order in which to write. Here’s how I recommend approaching it instead:

  1. Body
  2. Conclusion (then cut and paste to be your introduction)
  3. Actual Conclusion
  4. Standfirst

This order of composition works because it actually reflects the process of developing your ideas into a form that people can understand.

Start with the Article Body

It is tempting to start an article from the top: beginning with the standfirst and introduction, moving to the body, then finishing with the conclusion. However, this approach is actually backwards. Why? You don’t know what you’re thinking until you try to say or write it.

This fact becomes clear when you sit down to write about ideas that sounded great in your head — but are much harder to express linguistically on the page. This means that, if you start with writing the introduction, you’ll be trying to introduce ideas that you haven’t fully worked out. So, begin with the body paragraph following your first subheading.

Cut the Conclusion and Put it at the Top

Once you’ve finished writing the body of your article, you’ll have set down your main arguments and ideas in words. Conclude by summarizing your main points and the thrust of your article (coherently of course!), then cut what you’ve written and paste it at the top. Voila: your conclusion is now your introduction! It might need a little rewording, but it’s much easier to write an intro like this than to start drafting it fresh out of the gate.

Delete the Cliche

Writing is hard, partly because starting the process is hard. Often, writers break through blank page syndrome by beginning with a cliche. So, rather than starting with facts and information (the stuff people actually want to get out of the article), the writer starts with something irrelevant.

For example, “If a picture is worth a thousand words, then video is worth a million words!”

Or, “They say that you can’t judge a book by its cover, nor can you judge a blog post by its header image.”

write an article

Basically, irrelevant cliches are a sort of throat-clearing that can help writers to get started. But, once you’re getting your ideas onto the page, the cliche has served its purpose and you can get rid of it safely.

Go Meta (Write Your Conclusion)

The best conclusions aren’t just summaries; rather, they combine an article’s main ideas into a higher-level synthesis. If the function of a concluding paragraph were merely to summarize the main points of the article, you may as well just copy the introduction or even provide a ‘Back to Top’ hyperlink.

This is an opportunity to think more generally and express bolder ideas. The conclusion should take your argument up a notch, rewarding loyal readers with a bit of added insight.

TL:DR: Force Yourself to Write a Standfirst

The standfirst is an awkward format because it’s short enough to make conciseness necessary but long enough that all meaningful information should be included. TL:DR is a useful mantra in this area. Originally from Reddit, the abbreviation stands for too long, didn’t read — users post this reply when a post is too long and they abandon it midway. It then came to refer to a summary of such posts, intended for attention span-starved internet users.

write an article

Keep this audience in mind when you write your standfirst. If they lose patience, you lose a reader. Force yourself to express the article on a very high level, or even by some other means, such as metaphorically or with a (non-cliche) rhetorical question. Here’s an example from one of our President Jonathan Allen’s first articles on the L&T Blog:

‘TL;DR: Microsoft’s new CEO sent a ‘meh’ email today. Too much about him and not enough about the company. Speak to your audience and get out of your imaginary interview chair!’

Writing is counterintuitive because the order of operations for the two processes involved — thinking and writing — are necessarily distinct. This counter-intuitive nature means that a lot of written content out there, especially online, shows evidence of the scaffolding created by writers to help them actually get something onto the page. Don’t be afraid to tear the scaffolding down: your ideas are sturdy enough to stand on their own.

By Oliver Cox

Alumni Spotlight: Meagan Wansong (NYU ’15)

Meagan Wansong (NYU ’15) who currently is a Senior Talent Executive at Vettery, has answered a few questions for our Alumni Spotlight Series.   

  • What was your major field of study?
    • I was in the Global Liberal Studies program, with a concentration in Politics, Rights and Development, and a minor in Environmental Studies. A mouthful, I know! My focus was actually Urban Green Space Development and I went abroad to Berlin to study the public parks there for my thesis!
  • What is your current position?
    • Currently I am a Senior Talent Executive at Vettery. My job is to work directly with job-seekers to make sure they’re onboarded to Vettery and have a positive experience once they start their search with us. I coach them through interviews, prep them for negotiations, ensure communication between them in the company is fluid and review their resumes so that they can be as successful as possible. 
  • What is the best career advice you received in your job or past internship?
    • Don’t focus so much on the title of a position, or fixate on a particular role when looking for a job. When I graduated, I wouldn’t have thought that “Talent Executive” was the job for me. Before Vettery, I worked for a women’s nonprofit organizations in their marketing and fund developments departments. At first glance, it seems like I did a complete 180 from my last job to hear but once I learned about the position here at Vettery I saw that I had plenty of transferrable skills that would help me succeed in the Talent Executive position. For example, the experience I had building relationships with donors helped immensely when I needed to begin building relationships with job seekers. 
  • What advice would you give a current student on preparing and/or being successful at a future job or job search?
    • Definitely take advantage of Wasserman, both the online portal with job postings and the staff on campus that can help you with interview prep. Many of my friends never stepped inside the Wasserman office, but I know the ones that did were a lot more confident going into interviews and landed great jobs! Also, don’t forget to start building your network before you graduate. Find out what people around you have done in their careers (alumni, professors, family friends, etc.) and see what connections you might be able to make through them. 
  • How did you find your current job and what Wasserman services, or programs did you use, if any?
    • I had someone at Wasserman look over my resume and they provided me with some really good edits. I also served on the Liberal Arts Advisory Board at Wasserman so I got to host and attend many events there with really awesome speakers on different industries and career paths. We had alumni come in who had decided to go to graduate school, start their own businesses, or found great jobs in NYC (these are also great people to network with!).  

Mission: to provide a more transparent recruiting process for everyone involved and to help make meaningful matches between hiring managers and job-seekers. Now over 15,000 companies and thousands of job-seekers connect with Vettery. They are working non-stop to improve the hiring process, developing machine learning algorithms and matching people from all over the world across all industries.

“Our job is finding yours. A meaningful connection, like the one we formed years ago, can change your life. Hopefully we can help change yours.”

Employment Outlook: Canada

By Mary Anne Thompson, Founder and President, GoinGlobal, Inc.

To sustain its growing, healthy economy, Canada looks toward a growing immigrant workforce and expats to take up the slack for its skills shortages, aging population and declining birthrate.

Canada is a wealthy, high-tech, industrialized society with plentiful natural resources and a highly skilled work force. Its economy is strongly linked to that of the US, which receives 75% of Canadian exports, making Canadian markets vulnerable to the economic fluctuations of its southern neighbor. Despite some unrest with the US/Canada relationship over the past couple of years, the economic outlook for Canada this year is positive, with both exports and investments on the rise, which is good for the job market.

Canada has one of the highest immigration rates among OECD countries. In fact, immigrants have accounted for nearly 90% of the country’s labor force growth over the past few years. Because of Canada’s aging population and declining birthrate, its working age population is not growing. In response, the government has set a goal of accepting 1 million immigrants by the end 2021.

Canada’s new immigration system Express Entry (English, French) expedites the process of bringing in foreign workers with skills in short supply in Canada. Jobseekers fill out an online form that then matches them with available job openings. In addition, each Canadian province and territory has its own Provincial Nominee Program (PNP) (English, French), which allows provincial officials to nominate workers interested in settling in a particular area. In addition, the recently reopened Parents and Grandparents program allows Canadian citizens and permanent residents to sponsor parents and grandparents to receive permanent residence status in the country.

Employment Outlook

Overall employment grew by 2% over the past year. There were increases in both full and part-time jobs. The current unemployment rate is 5.8%. However, Canada’s unemployment rate for workers aged between 15 and 24 is a high 10.8%.

Business confidence remains high, according to the most recent Business Outlook Survey by the Bank of Canada. Companies also report positive hiring intentions, especially companies in the services industries. More and more firms are enlisting managed services providers or outside consultants to tackle large projects or those projects requiring specialized knowledge.

Short Term

Canada’s job vacancy rate hit a record high last year, with just under 550,000 job openings. The greatest number of job vacancies is currently in the provinces of Ontario, Quebec and British Columbia. Manpower’s employer survey reports a positive hiring outlook for the near future, with 16% of employers planning to hire and 80% of employers expecting to make no changes to current staffing levels, leaving only 4% unsure of hiring plans.

A recent Hays survey of employers found that 52% expected to increase permanent staff hiring this year, and 58% planned to increase hiring of temporary staff. Employers in British Columbia and Ontario are predicted to do the most hiring.

Long Term

The International Monetary Fund expects the unemployment rate to hover at around 6.2% this year into next, and then to slowly climb to 6.5% by 2023. By 2026, the Canadian government predicts that the labor market will generate a total of 1.8 million new jobs. A quarter of the Canadian population will be aged 65 and over by 2035, when it is estimated that immigrants will account for 100% of population growth. It is predicted that Canada will need 350,000 immigrant workers per year by 2035 to meet its labor needs.

By Sector

Over the past year, the private sector has added 319,000 new jobs – an annual increase of 2.7%. However, the public sector has seen an increase of only 0.7% in employment. Employment has risen the most in professional, scientific and technical services (+6.8%) and public administration (+3.6%) according to Statistics Canada. Other industries have seen little significant change.

ManpowerGroup reports that employers in all ten industry sectors plan on adding jobs over the next few months. The transportation and public utilities sector has the strongest hiring plans, followed by public administration and manufacturing. The weakest hiring outlook is in construction.

By Region

British Columbia (BC), Ontario, Quebec and Saskatchewan currently have the lowest unemployment rates. BC and Saskatchewan also saw the highest rates of job growth in the country over the past year. Job growth in Quebec has remained flat, but New Brunswick was the only province that actually saw a decline in employment over the past 12 months.

Areas of Job Promise

The job market looks good for most industries into the near future.

Top 25 Occupations Expected to See the Highest Growth and Salaries

  1. Utilities manager
  2. Engineering manager
  3. Pipefitting supervisor
  4. Pharmacist
  5. Public administration director
  6. Health care manager
  7. Business executive
  8. Banking and credit manager
  9. Veterinarian
  10. Marketing and public relations manager
  11. Air traffic controller
  12. Statistician or actuary
  13. Dentist
  14. Pilot and flying instructor
  15. Audiologist and speech language pathologist
  16. Telecommunications manager
  17. Mining and quarrying supervisor
  18. Specialized engineer (agriculture, textile, biomedicine, etc.)
  19. Computer systems manager
  20. Construction manager
  21. Aerospace engineer
  22. Economic development director
  23. Software engineer
  24. Head nurse and medical supervisor
  25. Scientific research manager

Source: Canadian Business

Talent Shortages

It has been estimated that 5 million Canadians will retire by 2035, creating a significant gap in the workforce.

Hays reports that 82% of surveyed employers are suffering from a skills shortage. Thirty-one percent of employers attribute their hiring difficulties to fewer workers entering the job market in their industry. This is especially true for the construction, manufacturing and logistics, and procurement sectors. Another quarter cite a lack of candidates with the right training and skills.

By Sector

The following sectors report the strongest hiring intentions for permanent and temporary workers this year, according to a recent survey by recruitment firm Hays.

Sector Percentage of employers reporting plans to hire permanent staff Percentage of employers reporting plans to hire temporary staff
Office professionals 77% 40%
Architecture and interior design 65% 25%
Legal 65% 21%
Sales and marketing 52% 48%
Construction 52% 28%
Human resources 52% 24%
Manufacturing and logistics 50% 24%
Accounting and finance 48% 23%
IT/ Telecommunications 45% 13%
Resources and mining 36% 23%

Source: Hays

Industry Sectors Expected to Add the Most New Jobs Annually Through 2026

  • Health care
  • Construction
  • Food services
  • Management, administrative and other support services
  • Elementary and secondary schools
  • Legal, accounting, consulting and other professional services
  • Computer systems design and related services
  • Social assistance
  • Finance, insurance, real estate and leasing services
  • Retail trade, architectural, engineering, design and scientific R&D services

Skills in Demand

Selection factors under the revised immigration program include one’s age, level of education, work experience, the presence of a valid job offer and the likelihood of the candidate to settle permanently in Canada. Employers may also prefer skills such as English-French bilingualism, and local diplomas or certificates.

‘Canadian experience’

For newcomers, the all-important ‘Canadian experience’ can be an obstacle to finding a good job. What ‘Canadian experience’ really means is having the required soft skills that are valued in Canadian society. In fact, 60% of Canadian employers value soft skills over hard skills. Having the required hard, or technical, skills can get a candidate an interview, but only those with the necessary soft skills will likely get the job. Many Canadian employers report difficulty finding the right combination of skilled workers with soft skills. Valued soft skills include:

  • Communication skills (verbal and written)
  • Knowledge of local language (includes learning professional jargon)
  • Presentation skills
  • The ability to make small talk
  • Leadership and initiative (people management, goal setting, problem solving, etc.)
  • Conflict resolution and negotiation
  • Accepting constructive criticism
  • Flexibility
  • Business etiquette (hand shaking, making eye contact, etc.)

Newcomers should learn Canadian social etiquette, be aware of Canada’s cultural diversity and engage in cross-cultural communication. A Robert Half survey reports that 90% of managers say that a candidate’s fit into a company’s culture is just as or more important than work experience or skills.

A great way to learn Canadian workplace etiquette is by volunteering. For more information, see this guide’s section on Non-Profits and Volunteer Organizations. In Quebec, the Canadian Practice Firms Network (CPFN) (English, French) offers newcomers the opportunity to practice doing a job (and thus getting experience) within a simulated environment.

Conclusion

Canada has opened its doors and arms to many immigrants over the past several years, and it has done a good job of integrating them into the workforce, a workforce that will come to rely on them more and more over the coming years. As Canada deals with an aging population, a declining birthrate and skills shortages, it must look now, more than ever before, toward its newest inhabitants and willing expats to take up the slack in its labor market.

http://www.goinglobal.com

Alumni Spotlight: Isabella Kundu ’16

Isabella Kundu graduated from NYU in 2016 with a degree in Dramatic Writing. She is a fifth-grade English teacher at Success Academy Bronx 3 Middle School.

From my earliest years in elementary school, I always knew I wanted to go to college. I also knew that getting good grades so that I could get scholarships is how I would be independent and make choices for myself. I went to school in Massachusetts with a large number of English language learners, and I could also see that my peers were placed in lower level classes year after year simply because they entered school not knowing English. While I, along with my mostly white and native Englishing speaking peers in the honors classes, zoomed ahead, the ELL kids fell further and further behind. They didn’t necessarily have college as an ambition until high school, and by that time, it was too late for them to catch up.

Witnessing this inequity from a young age informed my interest in working in education. I wanted to play a part in helping all kids have the same opportunity I did to go to a great college and pursue their passions in small classes with brilliant professors. After college, I sought out an organization that prioritized college readiness for all students and I found Success Academy.

Success Academy valued all the things I did, including a classroom focus on critical thinking, analysis, and feedback. I majored in Dramatic Writing at NYU, and the robust discussion and feedback in my classes profoundly improved my writing and my thinking. As a fifth-grade English teacher at a Success Academy middle school in the Bronx, I am able to bring that model and mindset to my students. When they are made uncomfortable by feedback on their writing, I share with them my experiences as an undergraduate. “This is exactly what you do when you’re a college student!” I explain to them, “You constantly receive and incorporate critical feedback on your writing and thinking.”

At NYU, I had the opportunity to work as a reading tutor through a Work Study with America Reads. I knew from this experience that I liked working with kids in the classroom, but over the three years of working at Success Academy, I have discovered many other aspects of teaching that I love. For example, I never liked “group work” at school, so I didn’t expect that collaborating with my colleagues would be so fun and fulfilling. Many of my co-workers are like family to me — they make me laugh, they challenge me (we debate everything from the novels we’re teaching to the latest political developments!), and they help me through the most difficult parts of the year. Everyone has a truly “all hands on deck” attitude: When problems come up, I know I can trust my team to help me figure it out.

Another thing I have found surprising about teaching (and my non-education peers probably would too) is the variety of my daily work. Most people think teachers deliver a lesson, give an assignment, and grade homework — and that’s it. But at Success, we put an amazing amount of thought into planning a lesson and figuring out how to deliver material in a way that makes kids want to learn it. It’s like putting on a performance — and I’ve found it’s my favorite part of teaching. I love breaking down the lesson into sections that are manageable and interesting and thinking about the questions I will ask to help kids master the skill I’m focusing on. In a way, it’s like playwriting, where you have to break down the story into sections — scenes — and carefully construct dialogue that moves the story forward, advances the audience’s understanding of the characters, and entertains them!

Last but not least, I didn’t expect teaching to introduce me to an entirely new passion and potential career. Through my work at Success, I have learned that I love planning lessons, activities, and questions that will meet the needs of all my kids. The field of curriculum development is something I never even knew existed, but now I know it is the aspect of education that I find most interesting, creative, and intellectually challenging and it is the path I plan to pursue after teaching.

Attending NYU, where I got to be part of a safe and supportive community while exploring an endlessly exciting city and growing and expanding as an artist and individual, was a unique and life-changing experience. I feel so lucky that this first phase of my career at Success Academy has provided something similar: a nurturing, supportive community and the opportunity to grow personally, intellectually, and professionally — all while fulfilling my lifelong desire to help kids access the educational opportunities they need to pursue their dreams.For more information about working at Success Academy, visit their Careers page.

Top Tips on Writing a Postgraduate Application for the UK

Amy Chandler from the University of Exeter, UK provides tips on all things UK Education and building a successful application.

Top Tips on Writing a Postgraduate Application for the UK
You’ve decided further study is for you and there’s a fabulous course at a fantastic university which you’d just love to attend.  Writing a great postgraduate application will put you in a strong position to do just that.  The personal statement is perhaps the trickiest part to get right, so here are 8 tips to help you: 

Doing your homework on the Institution and the course is crucial.

Plan ahead

  • Preparation, as so often, is the name of the game. You’ll need to submit your application as early as possible, particularly if the course is very competitive.
  • Consider having a one to one appointment with a Careers Consultant to discuss any aspect of applying for postgraduate study. Think ahead to who you could ask for feedback and references; more on this later.
  • Read the Rules and Guidelines provided: It’s vital to read the instructions supplied by the Institution regarding completing your personal statement. Many universities will have a particular procedure they want you to adopt and will give you advice about this. Also check the selection criteria.

Structure your personal statement

  • Your statement should have an introduction, main body and conclusion and should grab the reader’s attention from the beginning.
  • Roughly half of the main body should focus on you and your interests and the other half on the course. Finally summarise why you’re the ideal candidate.
  • Regarding length, check the guidelines given by the university you’re applying for, otherwise it should be one and half sides of A4, around 1000-1500 words.

Show you’re ready to undertake postgraduate study

  • Give the admissions tutors evidence of your enthusiasm, commitment and motivation for further study and research.
  • Give evidence of your skills, academic and non-academic, and how they’ll fit with the course. Demonstrate how you’re motivated to do high levels of independent research, and mention completed projects and dissertations.
  • Show you can manage yourself and meet tight deadlines and show your academic credentials such as critical analysis and communication skills.

“The Career Zone offers one to one appointments for feedback on postgraduate personal statements. It’s also a very good idea to show your statement to an academic in the field.”

Do your homework on the Institution and the Course

  • Researching the course and the Institution will pay dividends. Show admissions tutors you know something about the Institution you’re applying to. Say why you want to study there and what makes the Institution stand out from others.
  • Are there certain modules exclusive to this Institution, a specialisation which particularly interests you, links to industry or an academic you’d like to work with?
  • Be specific, and if you’ve visited the institution or spoken to a course tutor or current student, remember to mention it in your application. 

Show how the new course links to your past studies and your future career

  • Is this course a completely new direction for you or is it a development of what you’ve studied before? If the former, you can show how you will deal with the academic challenges which might arise.  If the latter you can demonstrate how your current academic study is relevant, and outline particular skills you have to offer.
  • Express your interest in the subject, perhaps including some academic references or readings. Giving some indication of which career you might want to get into will show selectors you have a good motivation for doing well on this course. Show evidence that this is an informed and mature career decision.

Thoroughly check your grammar, spelling and punctuation

  • Your written communication skills are also being assessed so taking the time to get these right will be time well spent.

Ask for feedback

  • You may have read your statement a hundred times over, but it always helps to have others look over it too. The Career Zone offers one to one appointments for feedback on postgraduate personal statements. It’s also a very good idea to show your statement to an academic in the field.

References

  • In many cases you’ll need to give the names of two academic referees.  These should be lecturers or tutors from your course since they need to comment on your academic capabilities and suitability for the programme of study you’re applying for.
  • A great personal statement shows just how much you’ve got to offer the programme, as well as what you’ll get out of it and also why you deserve a place on it above other candidates.

Amy Chandler from the University of Exeter, UK will be in Palladium Hall Lobby from 11am – 2pm on Tuesday 30th April. She is happy to talk all things UK Education, the benefits just one year Masters from just £17,600, courses, quality, location and the application process.

About the University of Exeter, UK

The University of Exeter, UK currently has 29 subjects ranked in the TOP TEN – only Oxford and Cambridge have more! A stunning campus University, 2 hours outside London, ranked 12th in the Sunday Times Good University Guide (Out of 128 Universities!). We offer 3 year degrees, with a high on-time completion rates and very competitive tuition fees, as such we attract an ever increasing number of America students to both our degree and postgraduate courses.

Find all our postgraduate courses with the entry requirements and all our scholarships.

The University of Exeter is located in the south west of England (2 hours by train from London), with a beautiful campus just a short walk from Exeter city centre and 20 minutes from the inspirational coast. With 22,000 students, including 5,000 international students from 140 different countries.  A member of the prestigious Russell Group, awarded TEF ‘Gold’ (Teaching Excellence Framework) based on student satisfaction, with an on-time completion rate of 96% and excellent graduate prospects -95% are in employment or further study within 6 months.

For more information on how to apply for a postgraduate degree in the UK – watch this helpful video.

NYU Presidential Intern Spotlight

As we recruit a new class of NYU Presidential Interns (applications due April 2nd), we want to highlight our current Senior interns! 

william

Name: William Chen
School: CAS
Major: Economics
Year: Class of 2019
Host Unit: Treasury Management  

Describe your work: As a Presidential Intern in Treasury Management, I spent the majority of my time researching current applications of blockchain in higher education and finance in order to find potential implementations of the technology at NYU. Working closely with the University Treasurer and other groups within the department, I prepared a comparative analysis of possible blockchain solutions for current university systems and databases.

Other NYU activities: Welcome Week Leader and a Presidential Honors Scholar

 

sara

Name: Sara Mendez
School: CAS
Major: International Relations with a minor in Economics
Year: Class of 2019
Host Unit: NYU School of Law Dean’s Office    

Describe your work: One of the most rewarding projects I worked on last semester was an initiative to offer more support and resources for international LLM students who want to learn more about American culture and improve their English language skills. This project was particularly exhilarating for me because it pushed me out of my comfort zone and allowed me to travel through the city in search of advice and resources to help us jumpstart our initiative. I also valued the face-to-face interactions I got to have with the students themselves at our weekly conversation groups, where we covered everything from politics to idioms and slang.

Other NYU activities: AnBryce Scholar and CAS Presidential Honors Scholar

 
Anesu

Name: Anesu Nyatanga
School: CAS
Major: Social & Cultural Analysis
Year: Class of 2019
Host Unit: Undergraduate Admissions     

Describe your work: During my time in Undergraduate Admissions, I’ve had the opportunity to work on a variety of projects promoting college access. One of my most fulfilling projects was presenting and speaking with 6th – 8th grade students at the Hispanic Scholarship Fund College Camp. Hearing their dreams and aspirations, and speaking with them about future possibilities, reminded me of why I pursued this internship in the first place: I wanted to promote access and student success like others did for me.

What do you enjoy in your free time? Going to the gym, watching movies with friends, and arguing about pop culture over dinner.

 

Khirad

Name: Khirad Siddiqui
School: Steinhardt
Major: Applied Psychology
Year: Class of 2019
Host Unit: Office of Academic and Student Affairs at the Graduate School of Arts and Sciences      

Describe your work: Working at the Graduate School of Arts and Science has been an illuminating experience, especially as an undergraduate student. One project I particularly enjoyed was the opportunity to learn about the process of finding and writing grant proposals for the GSAS Pathways to the PhD program. Through that experience, I learned about the kind of materials that grants require, and the best strategies for writing them.

What do you enjoy in your free time? In her free time, Khirad loves to travel. She recently went to South Africa for the Global Leadership Summit over summer break, where she was able to present on the theme of de-coloniality. 

 

Interested in applying for the Presidential Internship Program? Learn more about the application requirements on our website and apply today!

NYU Wasserman Center Internship Grant Past Winner Spotlight!

We have highlighted a past winner below to showcase their internship experience and the impact the grant had on their time at NYU.

Bio:
Jessica Chimoff is a second year Counseling and Guidance graduate student (NYU Steinhardt ’19). She is currently interning at Fiorello H. LaGuardia High School of Music & Art and Performing Arts as a counseling intern. She graduated Summa Cum Laude from Muhlenberg College, completing her undergraduate degree in Psychology with a minor in Women’s and Gender Studies.

What is it like working at Fiorello H. LaGuardia High School of Music & Art and Performing Arts?

Interning at Fiorello H. LaGuardia High School of Music & Art and Performing Arts is an incredibly enriching experience. As a counseling intern, I have the opportunity to learn from insightful counselors as well as from remarkable students. The students that I work with at LaGuardia are exceptionally talented, insightful, and creative, and being in this environment allows me to witness how students at a young age can possess such passion and dedication, which is extremely motivating.

What is the best part of winning the Internship Grant?

The best part of winning the Internship Grant is feeling that my work outside the classroom is encouraged by my university. I am grateful to know that the Wasserman Center serves as a resource for me and supports the work I do at my internship.  

What has been the most challenging or rewarding part of the internship?

The most rewarding part of my internship is being able to see the students I work with grow not only as students but as exceptionally talented individuals.  

Why shouldn’t you shy away from a non-paying internship?

Internships are an excellent way to allow students to augment their skillsets, and students should not shy away from a non-paying internship if it is in a field they are passionate about. Additionally, there are resources available to students that can assist them assuaging the costs of a non-paying internship.

 

Deadline for the Spring 2019 Wasserman Center Internship Grant is open to February 28th. Apply today! 

 

The Ultimate Guide to Secure Your Dream Job

Finding a job is something the vast majority of us is going to have to deal with at least once in our professional lives. It is a big decision to make, especially when (and let’s be honest here) most of us don’t go to school knowing what they want to do when they grow up.

It is hard to tell if what we study is what we’re going to end up doing, or even if it’s what we want to do later on. Some of us have a clear view of the path we’d like to take while other will most likely change their careers multiple times. There is no right or wrong here, but there is a way to make job hunting easier and more enjoyable.

When looking for a job or an internship, there are a few things you want to keep in mind to make sure you’re finding the position that’s right for you:

  • Are you looking to work for a big company or would a small startup get your wheels going faster? Different people have different preferences, some need more stability while others seek for thrills.

  • I’ve personally tried both – As soon as I graduated from Law School I started working at major corporate-like law firm which provided me with financial security, a clear career path and a lot of stability, but I also felt like I was going nowhere and making a very slow progress in life. After a while, I decided to make a career change and went to work for a small early-stage startup, and boy, what a rollercoaster it was. I learned so much in a course of a year, but with the thrill also came the ongoing sense of uncertainty – Are we going to take off or are we making no progress?  

  • I realized that I loved the thrill but also needed a little bit more stability, and there came along monday.com (where I currently work), which provided me with a good balance and advantages of both worlds. Today I’m happy to say that I still get to be working on different projects, take on new initiatives, bring ideas to the table, while maintaining what I call a ‘flexible order’, and personally, I love it!
  • Who do you want to work with? This is a crucial aspect of your professional life as you’re going to work with mostly the same people every day. When interviewing for a job, try to look around the office and see who you’ll be working with – Does it look like you can have things in common with them? Do they look happy? This can tell a lot about what it would be like for you to work there.

    Make sure that you’re entering a work environment which will get you motivated. You don’t need to be best friends with your co-workers, but you do need to like working with them, otherwise you wouldn’t want to go to work.
  • This item might be tricky, but it’s also important for your own growth. Try thinking of where you would like to be in 5 years from now. Have you always been dreaming of a specific role or industry, being in a management role, etc. You don’t need to have a clear answer right now, but try to at least have an idea as it will help you choose the right career path for you.
  • Keeping all of that in mind, the most important thing you need to think about is what gets you going in the morning? You want to make sure you’re passionate about what you do and that you actually like waking up in the morning, getting out of bed and going to work. Think of the last role you’ve had, what was the part of it you enjoyed most? Great, now look for a job that allows you to pursue it.

Now that we know what we need to take into consideration when searching for a job, let me tell you how I searched for a job and what I found useful on my way to securing the best job ever:

Make sure you do your research. Look for all the optional positions in your field, see which roles you could enjoy the most and focus on those.

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Write your resume/cv, cover letter and make sure you have anything needed to apply. You really don’t want to submit partial applications as it’ll decrease your chances of even having your application being fully reviewed.

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  • Send your resume/cv to as many companies/organizations as you want. Sometimes you’ll be interested in a position but when looking at the job requirements you’ll start thinking ‘Am I a good candidate? Is my resume enough to qualify for a job?’ My suggestion for you is to apply even if you think you might not qualify. If you are a strong candidate with a great application, the lack of experience might not be as relevant as it would be for other candidates.
  • You scheduled an interview? Great news. Now, research the different companies/organizations you’re interviewing for. What do they do? What do people say about the company? What’s the average salary for the role you’re seeking? Read the reviews, come prepared.

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  • Congratulations! You got a job offer. You’re almost at the end of the road. Make sure to carefully read the offer, see that you’re satisfied with the salary and terms and don’t be afraid to negotiate (but also stay realistic and know what is the industry standard). Take a deep breath, sign the offer and go celebrate with your family and friends.

The road to securing a job can be very stressful, but if you do it right you might find yourself enjoying it. So what have we learned here?

  • Think of what will make you wake up happy in the morning.
  • Choose a work environment which will motivate you – The industry, the size of the organization and the people who you’ll be working with.
  • Apply to relevant positions and make sure you have your cv and any other required documentation up do date.
  • Do your research and come prepared to all your interviews.
  • Go to monday.com/lp/students to see how we can help make your life as a student better and way more fun. You might even be eligible for a free account!
  • Go to monday.com to see if there’s a relevant position for you – we’re always looking to add more people to our team.

 

Business Boot Camp for Non-Business Students

Open to first year and sophomore undergraduate non-business students only. The Business Boot Camp sponsored by Morgan Stanley, will equip those interested in a career in business with the knowledge of industry terminology, an understanding of transferable liberal arts skills, insight into corporate culture, and a basic understanding of various career tracks in business. Lunch will be provided. Apply today for the Business Bootcamp!

 

NYU Wasserman Survey!

Need a study break? Take this short survey and be entered to win a giftcard or swag!

NYU will once again be participating in the Universum Survey! Your responses provide great information for our team to better know what you value from employers, your future career goals, etc. which informs programming and future services provided by our office! Complete the survey for your chance to win one of many prizes!

Survey found here!

Should You Consider A Career in Fintech? Advice from N26

Considering a career in financial technology? N26, an app designed to help users achieve their financial goals, shares three reasons why you should.

Technology has penetrated every aspect of our day-to-day lives: dating, dieting, learning, and transportation. It was only a matter of time before it reached our wallets. Enter fintech, the intersection between finance and technology. From budgeting apps to automated investment services, the fintech industry has revolutionized our relationship with money. Here are three reasons you might want to consider a career in fintech.

You’ll make a difference
Fintech is still young. In fact, a majority of the businesses in the sector were created within the past decade. If you land a gig at a startup, you’ll have the opportunity to play an integral role in shaping the company’s future. You’ll likely join a close-knit team, perhaps even in the single digits, which means more ownership and agency over your work. For some, the pressure can be daunting. For others, it’s the greatest inspiration there is. Stephanie Balint, Strategy and Operations Manager for N26 in New York, is just one of the employees working towards the app’s forthcoming 2019 launch. She believes that the entrepreneurial spirit is contagious.

“At N26, each employee gets to work independently, drive their own timelines, and determine their own workstreams,” she explains. “You get to have a really big impact on the direction the company is going to take in the next two or three years.”

You’ll actually enjoy coming to work
Startups have set the bar for creating state-of-the-art working atmospheres that keep their employees motivated. Many tech gurus have traded in their suits and briefcases for hoodies and sneakers. The kitchens are stocked with fresh fruit and cold brew, and the well-lit open floor plans are littered with four-legged furry friends. And the perks aren’t limited to the office space.

“We’ve had quite a few social events so far here in our NYC office, from lunches and happy hours on rooftops to Escape the Room challenges and axe-throwing,” says Amaan Lakhani, Strategy and Operations Associate at N26. “We are a pretty adventurous bunch so we’re always coming up with interesting ideas for places to go.”

You’ll impact everyday lives
It’s a fact — more people are dissatisfied with their banks than ever before. Working in fintech, you’ll be part of building personal finance solutions for millions of everyday consumers.

“N26 offers a traditionally unfriendly service through an extraordinarily friendly medium,” explains Sam Davidson, N26’s Head of Legal, Compliance and Risk. “Our clean and user-friendly products are a direct result of our amazing teams. Our engineers and designers work hard every day on innovative features, constantly pushing to improve our product.”

Interested in learning more? Prior to our upcoming launch, we’re hiring campus ambassadors to join our #N26 Campus Crew. To support our growth in the US, we’re looking for students to represent and promote the N26 brand. The ideal candidate is actively enrolled at NYU, is comfortable speaking and meeting with their peers, and is already well connected with groups and organizations on campus. This is a great way for you to gain experience in the fintech industry, network and get access to a community of technology enthusiasts, receive tons of swag, and make money working on your own time with no minimum commitment. If this is something you’re interested in, please stop by our table in the Palladium Lobby on Tuesday 12/4 from 2-6pm. See you there!