Professional Writing Club Holds First Meeting of the Semester over Zoom
- Olivia Alsup
- Tuesday, September 15th, 2020
On Tuesday, September 8, 2020, the Professional Writing Club held the first meeting of the Fall semester, with a focus on navigating the virtual job market. Western Kentucky University English alumni who now work at KirkpatrickPrice, a local security auditing firm, spoke over Zoom about the best practices in finding a job in this new virtual era.
Carly Mathews hosted the meeting and discussed searching for jobs in a 2020 market, provided tips and tricks for remote interviews, and provided information about the most commonly used virtual conferencing technologies.
“Nowadays, more and more companies are working remotely and allowing their employees to work remotely,” said Mathews about the expanse of remote working opportunities available to English majors. “You don’t have to look into one niche market to work from home. You can pretty much do anything nowadays.” For individuals interested in working remotely, Mathews suggests using remote specific job sites such as FlexJobs, JustRemote, ect. to cut out location specific jobs you might find on other sites.
Mathews also recommends tailoring your resume to fit a remote job application. This includes adding any virtual meeting software you are familiar with, soft skills, such as communication, and times when you were a “self-starter.”
“Anything where you didn’t wait to be micromanaged, you didn’t wait for a supervisor to tell you ‘Hey I need you to do this,’ or any instances where you can prove you were a self-starter is going to stick out to a remote employer because that’s the kind of personality they’re going to be looking for,” Mathews explained.
When preparing for remote interviews, Mathews recommends testing out equipment or links you may be asked to use during the interview and dressing professionally. She also stressed the importance of being prepared to discuss yourself as a person and not just as a hopeful employee.
“Remote employers are really going to want to hear about you as a person, not just about your past work performance,” said Mathews. “They’re hiring someone to be a good fit within their company. They need someone that they know they can get along with and that they know they can work with, and that’s going to come from learning about your personality. When working remotely, you don’t have face-to-face interactions or the normal clue-ins to figure out those working relationships.”
Along with hosting Professional Writing Club meetings throughout the semester, KirkpatrickPrice employees are also holding remote mock interviews for students within the English Department. Timeslots are still available between 9/21-25 for students to sign up and will be open until Friday, September 18. Students will be assigned to a KirkpatrickPrice writer and have the opportunity to be interviewed and provided feedback based on their performance.
Professional Writing Club meetings are held on the first Tuesday of every month, with the remaining two meetings of the semester scheduled for October 6 and November 3. For more information on the Professional Writing Club, feel free to visit their website or contact Dr. Angela Jones.