BEHIND THE BULLET POINTS: The Hidden Career Advantages of Global Co-op

We’ve all come to love that Northeastern is synonymous with all things global and experiential!  Dialogues of Civilization, Study Abroad, the hallmark Global Co-op program, a large international student body, and many other avenues to name a few, are ways in which our students gain critical exposure to an array of foreign cultures.

Alane De Luca, Peace Corps Volunteer, photographed with two Senegalese friends

To be a university student in America offers a certain right of passage – to ‘find’ oneself – to be able to explore courses of interest, entertain various career options, and take advantage of the many co-curricular options often promoted on campuses across the country.  Now is the time to seize this luxury opportunity – to indulge oneself – to imagine the possible and realize the impossible!  The convergence of this moment offers students multiple of directions from which to chose their path – my advice – be open to the new and different.  I did just that when I joined the Peace Corps, and it was one of the most transformational experiences of my life.

Much discussion about the benefits of Global Co-op revolves around the unique work experiences students can expect and the interesting companies and organizations co-ops are offered.  What many students miss at first glance, is that a Global Co-op also offers invaluable learning opportunities and cultural exposure way beyond the 9 to 5.  It’s the day-to-day living in a foreign culture that cannot be assigned a price tag – the complete immersion into how business is conducted in another country, soaking up the language, and easily overlooked nuances of communication among people. These are the exact bullet points that are difficult to add to your CV, but that are so critical to self-realization. They might be hard to articulate, but so powerful once experienced.

Alane De Luca, Global Employer Relations, here with newly married couple in Indonesia

Here, for example, after a day of meetings, I was spontaneously invited to attend a weekend wedding (not your usual turn of events given that I did not know the family), and what an incredible chance to seize a one-in-a-lifetime opportunity that would be forever imprinted in my mind.  How incredible it would be for a student to have a similar experience – no, this activity is not necessarily resume-worthy, but as a Global Co-op and to absorb and reflect upon these types of cross-cultural interactions, is what will give you the ‘career advantage’ over your competition and indelible passion for diversity in years to come.

I am often struck by the smells of foreign lands.  Burning wood in Bali, simmering curry and saffron in India, barbecue steak in Argentina.  Who would think that something so powerful as the sense of smell would be part of a career blog?

Alane De Luca, Global Employer Relations, here talking to children in central India

 Exactly.  No one.  To my point, when a Global Co-op ventures to their work site across the globe, part of the journey is to relish in the new and different.  Global Co-ops are laser-focused on developing new skills and adapting to their new employer as they should (mapping out resume-worthy bullet points the key goal), however, it would be short-sighted to overlook the permeable grittiness of day-to-day life in a new environment.  Something as innocuous as smell can lend to deeper learning – an up-close-and-personal diary of sorts about society the economic advantages and challenges, the geo-political climate, and the societal norms, to name a few.  When I was in India, for example, I was metaphorically slapped in the face with economical inequities – one that brought me right back to my Peace Corps days.  Knowing now what I didn’t know then made me realize that I could not have put a price on how an experience from 25 years ago would prepare me for feeling so at home in a place surrounded by such rich and contrasting realities.

Sometimes the simplest things are the most profound.  Travel is an education – unbound by walls with endless horizons to take in.  My hope is that this blog will inspire one student (if not hundreds or even thousands) to take a chance on a Global Co-op.  A Global Co-op experience will put you on the front lines of the impossible, where strength is challenged and growth is inevitable.  Impressive CV’s are a common commodity in today’s economy – what will make you different?  How will you stand out?  What will be your story – one that can be told as if you are painting a picture – what impression will you leave your next employer, and employer after that, and so on and so on…?

Alane De Luca, Global Employer Relations, watches as boy and his mother buy ice cream on a busy street in Hong Kong

In closing, I will leave you with this – I was struck by seeing this simple ice cream truck on the side of a busy road in Hong Kong.  The little boy and his mother were rushing and hailing their hands to make the truck stop for them (just like we would do here).  What struck me is that I would not necessarily notice this seemingly traditional pastime of buying ice cream from an ice cream truck in my own neighborhood – but, given I was in a new culture with senses heightened, to me, observing a mother and child buying something as simple as ice cream seemed so poignant in a foreign land.  Definitely not a bullet point for the resume, but oh how cool it was to witness on that hot summer day….

Alane De Luca oversees the Global Employer Relations team and global lead-generation initiatives within Career Development and Cooperative Education.  She comes to Northeastern with 25+ years of experience working in the international education arena.  Alane’s passion for global experiential learning began when she was a Peace Corps Volunteer in West Africa, where she worked alongside NGO’s and native Senegalese in rural parts of northern Senegal.  Upon returning to the states, she assumed a position funded by the United States Agency for International Development focusing on initiatives set forth by the Asia Pacific Economic Cooperation and administered at Northeastern.

Alane De Luca, Director of Global Employer Relations, Northeastern University

She also has experience directing global and experiential learning programs within academia at Merrimack College, Salem State University, Suffolk University Law School, and Saint Anselm College.  She is a dual citizen of Italy, holds an M.Ed. from Northeastern University and a B.A. from The College of the Holy Cross. www.linkedin.com/in/alanedeluca

“Not all those who wander are lost.” – J.R.R. Tolkien

Aerial View of Northeastern University

The idea of having an aerial perspective has always thrilled me. I think it opens up an entirely new dimension in filming. The excitement of being able to see and capture the world from a whole new level drove me to buy a drone for aerial photography. I am glad I was able to get one after coming to the U.S. because my favorite pastime has become exploring new places and taking trips to fly my drone while capturing the beauty of Mother Nature. I also share all of my work on my Instagram account and YouTube channel.

Nestled in the heart of the city the Northeastern University campus always gave me an aura of life and energy with the students hustling through the campus sipping coffee and the ever-busy buildings. It has always been a very competitive and enthusiastic environment for me. Being a proud Northeastern student, the idea of capturing aerial views of the university excited me. I am glad that the video gathered some attention and was shared on multiple Facebook pages. Drones have become a very delicate issue and I was very cautious to avoid flying over crowds of people or even at peak times. Though I could not seek official permission from the university, I got an unofficial nod from NUPD with some restrictions. I filmed mostly early in the morning to avoid unnecessary attention. From buildings to art inside the campus, I tried my best to capture every detail which reminisced the “Northeastern experience.” To view the video click here.

The idea was to make a video to show my friends and family. Had I known that this video would get thousands of views I would have made sure to go the extra mile for getting the output more “presentable” and professional looking, but the entire experience was very fulfilling. While I am still an amateur in making videos and editing my passion drives me to learn and continue to be creative. I’ve always been an admirer of the beauty of Boston and  I plan to make more captivating videos capturing it’s beauty to share with my audiences.

Currently, Himanshu Chintalapudi is a graduate student majoring in Bioinformatics from College of Sciences at Northeastern University and will be graduating in 2018. He can be reached on the following:

Instagram: himanshu_34 (https://www.instagram.com/himanshu_34/)

YouTube: http://www.youtube.com/c/HimanshuChintalapudi

 

Beyond the Green Line: Charlotte, NC

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BEYOND THE GREEN LINE is a blog series featured on the Northeastern University Career Development Blog, ‘The Works’.  Each post highlights a major city and gives you an inside look at the local food, culture, music scene, the industries that are thriving there, and some current job openings in the area.

This post authored by third year Northeastern student Molly Osmulski.

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Charlotte, NC is often thought of as the ‘city of bankers’ – hosting the headquarters of Bank of America as well as many major Wells Fargo offices, it is the second largest banking center in the country, trailing only NYC. But that’s not all it is. Charlotte also boasts large healthcare, insurance and energy industries. There are 14 Fortune 500 companies headquartered in North Carolina, with 8 in the Charlotte area including Duke Energy, Mctron Technologies, Nucor and Clariant Corp.

According to the Charlotte Business Journal, Charlotte has added over 30 jobs per day over the last decade. Not only can you find a job in Charlotte, but you can find an engaging career – Forbes ranked Charlotte #1 on its list of “10 Cities with the Best Employee Engagement.” Also, your hard earned money will go further in Charlotte – the cost of living is 1.3% below the national average, which is a welcome change from Boston’s rates.

Several Northeastern students have co-oped in Charlotte including industrial engineering grad student Sahil Shah who’s currently working at Siemens Energy. Sahil shared that,

“Charlotte has definitely been a great experience in terms of my co-op as well as the city experience. It is a bit laid back compared to the ever-vibrant atmosphere in Boston, but very peaceful…and the temperatures here are also very pleasant compared to Boston’s terrible winter.”

And if you’re worried about blazing a trail to Charlotte, Northeastern has a big presence there already with a Regional Campus in Charlotte that just celebrated it’s 5th anniversary. The campus offers graduate programs to serve the region’s unique industry needs in areas such as health informatics, project management, leadership, education, and business. Additionally, there is an alumni community in Charlotte which would welcome you with open arms.

So, why else should you consider Charlotte? Just a few more reasons…

Food and Drink:

  • Enjoy some famous Carolina BBQ and fried cornbread

    charlotte-food

    One of Mert’s Heart and Soul’s amazing dishes

  • Eat some Southern comfort food – Mert’s Heart and Soul is a local institution
  • Sample all the best fried pickles in Charlotte (this could take a while)
  • Explore the Charlotte craft beer scene at one of the many breweries and cideries

Culture:

  • See art from around the globe at the Mint museum
  • Check out the NASCAR Hall of Fame

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    NASCAR Hall of Fame

  • Explore greek culture at Yiasou! Greek Festival, one of the largest cultural festivals in the city
  • Enjoy free jazz concerts in the summer at Freedom Park
  • Stroll along the Charlotte Liberty Walk and see 15 historical sites

Activities:

  • Daniel Stowe Botanical Gardens

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    Crowder’s Mountain summit views

  • Hike Crowders Mountain – it’s a challenging hike, but the views from the Pinnacle are worth it
  • Visit the Common Market
  • Root for the Carolina Panthers and Charlotte Hornets
  • Go rafting at the U.S. National Whitewater Center

 

Job Opportunities – log into NUcareers today to apply!

  • The Allstate Corporation Infrastructure Engineer; Service Engineer
  • Aetna Manager, Medical Underwriting
  • American International Group (AIG) IT Project Manager, Corporate Systems
  • Red Ventures Software Engineer, Data Science;  Staff Accountant; Sr.Digital Marketing Analyst
  • Impact Financial Systems Business Analyst/Engagement Manager; Support Engineer
  • Pfizer Professional Healthcare Representative
  • Twenty-First Century Fox News Producer; Highlights Coordinator, On-Air Promotions
  • Tresata Data Engineer
  • Capital Bank Treasury Management Officer; Senior Commercial Loan Officer
  • Avidxchange Staff Accountant – Treasury
  • PassportParking Software Engineer; iOS Developer
  • Sonic Automotive Business Systems Analyst; Monitoring Engineer; Inventory Consultant
  • Command Partners PPC Manager; Website Developer

Coming up in early 2017: Beyond the Green Line – Denver, CO!

We want your feedback! Feel free to leave us a comment if there’s anything we’ve missed or a particular city you’d like us to profile.  If you’d like to have your photos considered for the next post, send over your Denver photos now!

This post was authored by Molly Osmulski, a third year Northeastern student. Molly is working toward a degree in Marketing with a minor in International Affairs. She works part time at the Northeastern Career Development office and has previously completed a co-op at Travel + Leisure Magazine in NYC and has studied abroad at the London School of Economics. When she is not studying or searching for her next co-op, she loves travelling, thrift shopping and trying new foods. You can contact her at osmulski.m@husky.neu.edu.