“It’s not what you know, it’s who you know.”
“It’s not what you know, it’s who you know.” I am sure each of you reading this blog have heard that before, but here I am saying it one more time because it is 100% true. Over my years as a family and consumer sciences student, professors have preached this over and over. Well, I am a true testimony to just how true that statement is.
For me it all started in Prof. Susan Turgeson’s Family and Consumer Sciences 290: Introduction to Family and Consumer Sciences course. One of our assignments in that class was to complete outside-of-class observations in different family and consumer sciences-related fields. Prof. Turgeson knew I was contemplating furthering my education someday as a high school counselor, so she gave me Brigitta (Altmann) Austin’s (a 1999 UWSP FCS alumna) name at the Stevens Point Area Senior High (SPASH) Career Center. I had no idea who Brigitta was and had never stepped foot inside the doors of SPASH before, but I took that brave first step and sent Brigitta an email asking if I could come observe in the Career Center.
In October 2014 I entered the doors of SPASH for my very first time and observed for an hour in the Career Center. It was a beautiful room offering all sorts of college, career and life ready opportunists for students. While meeting Brigitta for that very first time she asked me if I was looking for an internship? My eyes light up, as that spring I would be in need of an internship.
In January 2015 I began my internship in the SPASH Career Center. I spent about nine hours a week interning in the Career Center and loved each and every day I was there. I would search for jobs in the Stevens Point area and post them for the students, help them with job applications, resumes, scholarships and so much more. I went into classrooms and taught Career Cruising lessons and organized Career Conversation events that were held each month in the Career Center. Every day was something new and I was always interacting with students and meeting different teachers and faculty. I truly loved what I did and was reassured that I wanted to continue on my education path into becoming a high school counselor.
This September something very exciting happened for me. I was offered a full-time job in the SPASH Career Center. What all started as “just another homework assignment for class” turned into a full-time job for me! Even more exciting is that, I have this full-time job a semester before I graduate with my Bachelor of Science degree in Family and Consumer Sciences with a business administration minor.
Next time you think, “I’m too busy to go into the community and do an outside of the classroom assignment,” stop first and think about where this opportunity could take you in the future. It’s all about networking and getting your name out there. I can’t even begin to thank my professors enough who preached these words to me over and over again. I truly love what I do each day at SPASH and look forward to continuing my education and pursuing my dreams of becoming a high school counselor. It is amazing how much I have accomplished this last year alone and I look forward to every career goal that is ahead of me yet.