2018-19 ePortfolio honorees recognized at 1st Annual Showcase

The 1st Annual ePortfolio Showcase was held on Monday, October 28th at The Cabral Center on campus. The event, attended by more than 50 students, alumni, and faculty, recognized the top 4 ePortfolio ‘authors’ for 2018-19: Josh Gelinas, Jessica Kline, Jingyi Lyu, Liz McCarthy.

Dr. Ed Powers

Dr. Ed Powers kicked off the ceremony, providing an overview of the ePortfolio program and how it has evolved as a central feature of the Corporate and Organizational Communication master’s program at Northeastern. The honorees were selected by a panel of members of our Alumni Advisory Council.

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How to leverage your ePortfolio after graduation

When I first heard I would have to complete an ePortfolio as part of my program at Northeastern, I wasn’t sure if it would be valuable to me. It instead felt like any effort I put into it would be duplicative of the effort I was putting into my LinkedIn profile and resume. I was working full-time while trying to balance school and other priorities, so it was hard for me to even figure out when I’d have time for this.

I also felt like the ePortfolio would only be valuable for someone looking for a job – something I had no plans of doing because I was already comfortably employed. Well, now being on the other side of my degree, I am so happy I had and still have this ePortfolio.

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Fitting into a workplace in another culture

How do stereotypes influence our behavior at work? Are our instincts accurate? A recent article in the online magazine Swissinfo described some of the challenges, large and small, amusing and potentially embarrassing, of working as an ‘incomer’ in a Swiss company. Would you expect to be formal with Swiss colleagues? Think deadlines are important? Expect consensus must be reached in meetings? For those of us in communication roles, deciphering the cultural cues and office codes is especially critical. As my colleague, Patty Goodman, often reminds me, we need to be aware of our biases, keen observers, and learn as much as we can about cultural values.

So what are the answers to the questions posed in the Swissinfo article?

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How to answer the “Why do you want this job?”​ interview question

This question usually comes early on in the interview, often being used by the interviewer as an icebreaker. It’s considered one of the easier interview questions, but there’s definitely a right way to answer it.

Although this is meant as an easy question, there are a few things you’ll need to include:

1.   Your core messages – why you’re qualified/how you can benefit the company. If you’re not sure what I mean by this, I’ll explain more below.

2.   The reason the role excites you

3.   The fact that you understand the job

4.   The fact that you want this job, not just any job at the company

5.   The way the job connects to your career plan

6.   The fact that you intend to stay in the job for awhile

You can see that even though this isn’t meant as a complicated question, it has some elements that you might want to brainstorm about before your interview.

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What this consultant learned by doing

Georgiana Pierre-Louis, a graduate of our Corporate and Organizational Communication master’s program in 2012, wanted to be a consultant someday, but that was a plan for a later date – until, that is, a reorganization at her company gave her a nudge in the consulting direction. She could relocate with her organization, which, as a new mom, wasn’t ideal at the time. Or she could get a new job. Or, she could take a risk, follow the germ of an idea in the back of her mind, and learn what consulting was really like.

She opted to start her own consulting business, and five years later, she says she’s not sure she could ever go back.

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You’ve heard of ROI — what’s ROE?

What motivates adult learners to pursue a graduate degree? There are, of course, a multitude of reasons. In an era of digital disruption, many communicators seek new knowledge or skills. Others are interested in experiential opportunities to strengthen their resumes. Still others view a graduate degree as a pathway to career advancement — credentials do matter! We all expect a return on investment in our time and money. But we’re talking about something more consequential — a return on education. That common motivational thread for students in our Corporate and Organizational Communication program is a passion for communication, a passion for learning.

This is what Professor of Practice Ed Powers learned in an interview with Josh Gelinas, a PR professional from North Carolina who will soon be completing his master’s program.

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Northeastern’s new alumni networking platform NUsource — initial impressions

NUsource is a brand-new platform designed exclusively for Northeastern alumni. Much like LinkedIn, the site can be used to create professional connections, but it’s also a great place to develop mentoring relationships and solicit and share career advice with other Husky alumni.

Functionality and User Friendliness

To begin, the homepage includes a dashboard which allows you to access your calendar, inbox and user profile. Additionally, recent posts, latest resources (basically site tutorial videos) and personal recommendations reside here.

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Unintended consequences — how a capstone project expanded my professional network

From the onset of my graduate career, it was important to me to draw parallels between my professional life as a public affairs officer for a federal government agency and my continuing education. Not only did this approach help gain the support of my colleagues, but it also underlined the connection between my work to my studies. So, without hesitation, I chose a capstone project that proved to be as enriching professionally as it was academically.

My goal was to develop a resource guide for my public affairs colleagues, especially the newcomers. What I had no way of knowing was how the project would morph into a major networking opportunity.

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Mapping an intentional career strategy

Ed Powers and Carl Zangerl had the pleasure of interviewing Emily Wong, who is graduating from our program in May. Emily, who is originally from Hong Kong, describes why she selected Northeastern’s master’s program – “amazing experiential learning opportunities” – as well as her capstone consulting project, during which she was able to translate what she learned in the program to a Boston nonprofit’s public relations challenges.

She also shares some terrific job search tactics that have resulted in a job at a strategic business and communications advisory firm serving the life sciences industry.

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Unlocking Opportunities! Part Two in a Three Part Series

Welcome back colleagues!

I hope you enjoyed the first part of my story, Why I chose CPS to pursue my dream! Part One in a Three Part Series.

This second part is about what was, for me, a remarkable journey and experience at CPS. My time in the MS COC  program was full of global workplace learning opportunities, intellectual challenges and my personal and professional growth.  There is a quote by Benjamin Franklin that is very close to my heart and my personal philosophy of life: “To succeed, jump as quickly at opportunities as you do at conclusions.”  And, this quote guided me throughout my learning journey at CPS.

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