When we originally joined the MMS: FOB program, the first goal for many of us was achieving the dream job. We knew that was the ultimate goal, and that the program would help us reach it.
One of the first career exercises that was offered to help us work toward that goal was the Career Advisors for MMS (CAM) program. We were paired up with a Fuqua MBA or MMS alumnus, who was in our target industry, or one similar. The first round of interaction with our new advisor would be a networking strategy session to learn more about each other, and help figure out potential career matches. The second session would be a mock video interview via Skype, followed by a discussion on interviewing skills.
The CAM program not only provides students with a chance to improve interviewing skills but also more occasions to network with Fuqua alumni. As our network of MMS alumni continues to grow, more and more of them are becoming advisors. I had the opportunity to work with an MMS alumnus from the inaugural Class of 2010 as my CAM. In our first session, I was able to learn about the marketing industry from his perspective, as well as his product management duties. My interests were, and still are, in the marketing field, and he was able to address some of the options that I could look into based on my background and experience.
The best part about my sessions with the MMS alumnus was that he was able to relate very specifically to my situation as an MMS student looking for post-graduation employment. He knew exactly what the workload is, and offered advice to help relieve stress that comes as an MMS student. I felt connected with him and comfortable having a professional conversation about future opportunities. Breaking the ice is so much easier with someone who has been in your shoes before.
In the second session, I had provided him with the description of a job that I would potentially want to interview for. I benefited heavily from doing this, as he took the time to look over the job description, and tailor our mock interview to that specific position. He was able to prepare questions that would potentially be asked and even portrayed himself as a real employee of that specific company. It was a very professional mock interview and was extremely helpful for me to get an industry professional’s perspective on my interviewing skills. After the mock interview, we were able to review it, and he provided me with tips and tricks to improve my interviewing skills going forward.
Overall, I’m glad the CAM program was a mandatory exercise for us. It was a starting point for expanding my MMS alumni network, as well as improving my interviewing skills. If there’s one thing that I loved the most about my CAM experience, it’s knowing that MMS alumni, as well as Fuqua alumni in general, are always willing to help fellow colleagues. We all really are part of the famous Fuqua Family…forever.