Obama, can you make me a job?

While Obama's State of the Union address tonight was somewhat encouraging to the unemployed, I got a lot more encouragement from the career-related progress I made today.

In keeping with my pact to take advantage of NYU's career development center, I went to Wasserman's One Stop Shop today. I interviewed with a recruiter from Uncommon Schools, a not-for-profit organization that starts and manages charter schools in New York and New Jersey. It sounds like a really cool organization, and I will definitely follow up.

Also, I heard back from one of the internships I applied for yesterday, the Gulf Coast Fund. I'm going in for a meeting sometime next week.

And the icing on the cake: the Gramercy Staff Meeting was CANCELED!! Sweet.

Maybe I should start working RIGHT NOW?!

I'm not looking to work full-time job during spring semester, but an internship that could potentially turn into a full-time job after spring seems like a good strategy. And even if it doesn't turn into a job, then it's still something else to increase my experiences and legitimize my interests. However, adding a job to a full course load, being an RA, and extracurricular activities might be a challenge... but we'll cross that road when we come to it.

I just applied to two positions (is it appropriate to give out this information?):
Gulf Coast Fund - Spring Intern
Do Something - Business Development Intern

I'll keep you posted if I hear back.


Moving Forward

I’m still a bit jostled by being waitlisted for TFA, and after talking about it to my friends and family, and I’m ready to make start making progress in my job search.

I sent out the mass e-mail today, and I (semi-)personally invited all of my supporters to read this blog. I hope that you will continue to check back for updates, hold me accountable for making progress, and that one day, you’ll check back and learn that I finally accomplished my goal.

But for now, I’m starting small. I’ve decided that my first step will be to exhaust the resources provided by NYU’s Wasserman Center for Career Development.

I’ve already attended “Business Boot Camp for Liberal Arts Students,” which is a 2-day conference style event meant to expose participants to different careers in business. It was kind of like Career Day at high school… but with much higher stakes. I was most interested in the presentations about investment banking (Morgan Stanley), human resources (Earnst & Young), and consulting (Deloitte). I think I could do those jobs. I just need to convince someone else that I can do it.

Anyway, I plan to take advantage of four upcoming events at Wasserman within the next month, and I'm not going to flake out! I'm committing to following through with this goal, and this blog (and anyone reading this) is going to keep me accountable for it. So, here are the events that I plan to NOT blow off:

One Stop Shop, January 27, 2010, 3pm -6:30pm.
Wasserman offers one-on-one sessions for resume critiques, industry specific advice from working professionals in not-for-profit, and mock interviews.

Spring Job Fair and Diversity Expo, February 3, 2010, 11am-3pm.
Deloitte, Citizen Schools, and Comrise Technology will be there, and I will talk to them. Maybe they will also talk to me.

Dining for Success, February 11, 2010, 5pm-7pm.
Mostly, I’m doing this because it’s a three-course meal at The Smith for $10. But I guess it couldn’t hurt to learn how to make a good impression with your mouth full of steak and spaghetti!

Boot Camp for Future Professionals, February 26, 2010, 9am-4pm.
This is a one day workshop where I will allegedly gain “insight into adjusting to corporate culture and business trends, effective communication strategies, advice from recent alumni, and interactive teamwork and professional skills training.”

It’s not exactly sending out resumes, but I think it’s important to use all the resources that I have at my disposal. And by attending these events, I’ll hopefully make a lot of connections with people who can help me in my job search, as well as other students who are going through their own searches. At the very least, I’ll get a good meal out of it.


Mission Statement

My name is Ramil Ibrahim, and I need a job. I'm currently a senior at New York University, and the end of my college career is fast approaching, so I want to secure a job before I graduate.

I know that I have a lot to offer, and that I am a competitive candidate in numerous applicant pools, however, finding a job isn't exactly a piece of cake. The current economic climate has greatly reduced the number of entry-level jobs, and has also increased competition between college graduates. There are fewer spots available, wages are lower, and companies usually hire from within.

To compound the problem, I am extremely idealistic. I am desperately hanging on to my childhood dream of changing the world. I still believe that one day, I will be responsible for significantly promoting positive change, either by reducing international poverty, or improving educational access, or ending chronic homelessness, or something else. I've dedicated my life to improving the lives of others, and I am continually searching for ways to maximize my impact. I want to promote justice in the greatest possible way that I can... but I also need to eat.

So last November, I applied to Teach For America. It's a great organization that's dedicated to providing quality education in underserved schools, and my past experience has prepared me very well to serve as a Teach For America Corps Member. I researched the organization for months, talked to a lot of people about the application process, completed the interview, and waited to hear back. I was pretty confident that I was a shoe-in, and so I was full expecting an acceptance. Yesterday, I got the e-mail:

While the Committee has offered admission to some candidates and denied admission to others, it has recommended your acceptance to Teach For America but has placed you on the waitlist because of a few uncertainties impacting this year's corps.

Needless to say, I was very upset. I felt like all my hard work had all been a waste of time. I realize that TFA is very competitive, and that a waitlist isn't a rejection, but I can't help but feel inadequate.

That said, I'm ready to move on and continue looking for opportunities that will allow me to both support myself and realize my dream of changing the world. I'll still wait to hear back from TFA (March 6), but in the meantime, I have to take a more active role in my future.

So, I'm writing this blog as a kind of accountability partner in my job search. I'm going to record all my efforts, obstacles, opportunities, setbacks, and hopefully some victories, too. If all goes as planned, this blog will keep me on the right track and result in full-time employment. There are 4 months before I graduate, and a world of opportunities to explore. While I am primarily using this blog as a tool to track my progress, feel free to comment, give advice, offer support, connect, or GIVE ME A JOB.

Thanks for reading, and check back often for updates.