What’s Your Career Story?

Jasmine Christel Bouvron Andrew Olaleye Kevin Tay Brad Callow Ashley Conti Colin Barclay

Jasmine He T'13, Cardinal Health

Jasmine was intent on working in the United States. As an international student she knew that navigating the requirements of Permanent Work Authorization (PWA) would be tough, but through a simple strategy – applying to anything that interested her – she nailed the perfect opportunity with a company that had never recruited at Tuck before and usually required PWA.

“I cast the widest possible net. I applied to dozens of jobs, even those that weren’t perfect ‘on paper,’ because you can only find out their true intentions and hiring expectations by talking to them. I was open-minded about the potential for any resource, contact or conversation to lead to an opportunity.”

Christel Bouvron T'13, Walmart

Christel came to Tuck knowing exactly what she wanted to do: consulting. But after the second round of interviews, she knew better. That’s when she realized that sometimes the best offer comes later. You just don’t realize it until it happens.

“When I needed help, I asked people for advice, not jobs. They told me to pay attention to my values. What did I want out of a job? How did I want to be treated? That’s why Walmart resonated. The job was very relationship based, plus I got big-company experience, cross-functional team management, and a great network.”

Andrew Olaleye T'13, Colgate

Andrew knew Colgate’s global reach would provide a great internship, but he couldn’t ignore his competing desire to have an on-the-ground experience in Africa. So instead of one internship, he took two – and showed that taking a few risks was the key to pinning down his dream.

“I told the company, ‘You don’t have to pay me. I’ll fly myself out there.’ For me, the most valuable experience is just getting the experience itself. I wanted immersion in a developing market and I got it. My best advice: Use the internship to get exposure not just to your first job, but to your dream job down the road.”

Kevin Tay T'13, McKinsey & Co.

Kevin wanted to intern in general management somewhere in Asia. His first offer was in marketing strategy for a traditional company, but Kevin’s desire to make more of an impact lead him to take a less conventional internship with the Department of Health in the Philippines … and gave him a story that continues to open doors.

“I worked with government authorities to improve community health in mining areas. I learned skills I never would have gained elsewhere. And I left with an easy conversation starter for fulltime interviews. The upshot: (I received) offers that partly came my way by taking the risk of a non-traditional internship.”

Brad Callow T'13, RunKeeper

Maybe Brad could have convinced himself he’d be happy with a consulting job. But when it came to his internship, he decided he’d rather trade prestige for what really got him excited--a new area of healthcare called the “quantified self.” So where could he meet the right people who shared his enthusiasm ... and could help him land the right job?

“At Tuck I realized how many avenues there were to explore for jobs. I found taking advantage of conferences was the best way to meet people outside my network. It actually became fun because with the help of the CDO and these conference connections, I could swing for the fences, but I could do it in my own way.”

Ashley Conti T'13, DDJ Capital Management

Ashley recognized that a job referral could come from anywhere, so she set a goal: have a networking conversation or send at least one career-related e-mail every day. The connections added up, and by the time she interviewed with the perfect company, she already had the “in’s” needed to nail it. 

“You never know when and where there will be an opening. Don’t get discouraged if there aren’t opportunities with the first ten people you call – it’s impossible to know until you ask. As a wise T’12 told me: You might get fifty ‘no’s’, but it only takes one ‘yes.’”

Colin Barclay T'13, ToughMudder

Colin had entrepreneurial ambitions. And a list of criteria – small company, early stage, preferably working for an MBA boss – that led to a few leads; none a good fit. But when the going got tough, that’s when someone in his network mentioned ToughMudder.

“There are risks in doing your own thing. You have to scramble. You have to be comfortable being the last person in your class to get an internship. But high risk means high rewards, and if you talk to as many people as possible, and have a strategy and stick to it, then it’s easier to trust that things will work out in the end.”

Jobs for the Class of 2013: Plentiful and Diverse

Ashley Conti T’13 converted an internship into a dream job in investment management. Learn how her classmates found theirs.

More »