How do you convey all the stuff you do? How can you share with someone what inspires you? What about all that you are learning at UR? Your professional story is who you are and what you’re all about. Your task is to define it, translate it to a professional audience, and present it in the most effective way possible.
A compelling story communicates your most meaningful experiences, competencies, and accomplishments to an audience. The most common mediums to tell your story are through resumes, cover letters, applications essays, online profiles, networking/informational conversations and interviews. We can help at the Greene Center with all of these, and help you craft your story over your time at the University of Rochester.
Crafting your story
Great stories are a delicate balance of comprehensive and concise. Learning to craft this takes several reflective steps.
- Reflect on your story includes drawing on your inspirations, most meaningful experiences, competencies and accomplishments
- Your audience considers who you are telling the story to, why you are communicating with them, and what will be meaningful to them.
The Greene Center has developed a specific resource to help you draw out and discover your story prior to documenting and delivering it.
Mediums for Your Story
- A great plan to start telling your story is through a tailored resume, CV, and cover letter! The Greene Center offers templates as guides to help get you started.
- Align the story you are telling through your social media presence (The Meliora Collective, Handshake, LinkedIn and other platforms) with your search documents so that you are telling a cohesive professional story!
- Create a web-based portfolio that highlights your skills and projects competencies. This web-based portfolio can highlight different projects you’ve completed, and also will showcase that you can create an online portfolio. Consider using Wix, WordPress, GitHub, or other online portfolio or data repository websites.
- Practice your interview skills.Practice with colleagues, your network, and Greene Center advisors.
Enroll in Courses at UR That Can Help You Explore and Tell Your Story
CASC 104: Design Your Life (+Career!) is an eight-week dynamic course that applies a design-thinking framework and mindset to career exploration and development. Students will learn to get curious, try stuff out and talk to people through experiential activities in and out of the classroom, self-reflection, readings and discussion. Through successful completion of this course, students will be able to design their experiences at Rochester and beyond, and be better equipped to adapt to change and disruption while navigating academic and career decisions.
WRT 27X: Offered through the Writing, Speaking, and Argument Program, the WRT 27X series is designed for students in certain majors to explore professionalism, career identity, and how to communicate these to others.
Login to UR Student for the full course description and offerings by term/semester.
Negotiating an Offer
Once you receive an offer, the final part of telling your story involves knowing and communicating your worth to a future organization or employer. Negotiating an offer moves beyond your portfolio and interview, and into the power position of knowing your worth, what you will bring to the organization, and how you can be compensated for that.
This is a critical space for starting your position and your future compensation off on the right foot, and something candidates tend to be uncomfortable with. There are lots of resources, learning opportunities and guidance on how to navigate the process, no matter your experience level, background or the employment market.
Talking to PeopleNetworking and interviewing is a two-way street, and deeply involves your ability to communicate your own story, interests and ideas. See our page Talk to People to learn more about taking your story and turning it into a conversation.
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