Currently pursuing MBA
I am originally from Iraqi origins, however, I grew up in Jordan.
Last year I decided to move to the United States and pursue my MBA in Project Management with Virginia International University. Moving to the States was a huge step in my life and I soon realized things were a little different than where I used to live. I soon had to adapt to different rules and a way of life here that was initially a bit of a challenge.
During my first semester I heard about a class that was being held by the Career Center Department on résumé writing. I realized that my current résumé was not written in the American style and I could not figure out how to re-write it myself. So, I decided to sign up for the résumé class.
I was fortunate enough to take the résumé class and I learned how to write my own résumé with the help of Ms. Robyn Taylor, Career Center Manager. After attending two classes I ended up creating a professional résumé.
My next step was to look for an internship. While searching for internships, I soon found that the process was not an easy task and a lot of the employers were asking for me to apply on-line. This meant I had to make sure my résumé was noticeable.
I was soon accepted to intern with The Committee or Refugees and Immigrants (USCRI). This organization was really important to me to be a part of due to it being 1 of 7 organizations, which helps the government to resettle refugees inside of the United States. After gaining the excellent opportunity to intern with USCRI, I learned a lot about management and organizational skills.
During one of the frequently held panels by the organization to help interns gain professional development skills, one discussion was about building a professional résumé. To conduct the session were two representatives from Deloitte. I was confident enough to present them my résumé for review during the class exercise. To my surprise at first, the Deloitte team used my résumé as the best professional résumé example.
Mohammed, Talib Uddin Zaffar
Currently pursuing Master of Science in Information Technology
The best thing about my time at Virginia International University (VIU) has been the opportunity for me to study what I am passionate about! My studies have allowed me an enjoyment to develop with each course and to focus my efforts to learn. What has helped me to achieve this is the constant support that I have received from my professors, throughout the past two years at VIU, as well as, having the right amount of resources at my disposal to assist me in producing my work.
In particular, Ms. Robyn Taylor the Career Center Manager, whose vitality has inspired me and contributed towards my decision to further my studies. She is the one who encourages students to participate in volunteering activities. The Career Center has helped me and many other students by conducting personality development classes, leadership skills, how to make a professional resume, and a lot more.
The Career Center of VIU is also there for students whether he/she is new or has completed their studies. The department makes relationships which never end. They help and encourage students to explore themselves and to bring out their best by giving opportunities to become a leader, even you can be a president of a student club. By conducting these types of professional development events and inviting guest speakers to our university, we all got benefit.
I am thankful to all the student body, staff, professors (especially Dr. Saiid Ganjalizadeh, Dr. Mayyada-Al Hammoshi, Dr. Dereje Tessema, Dr. Wang Paul and my Academic Advisors Son and Kroosh). Thank you for always encouraging students to attend Career Center and campus events by sending us reminder emails and giving us permission to attend.Finally, thank you so much everyone for making my studies successful! I hope everyone will enjoy the benefits of the Career Center as I did. All the best to current and new students!
As a VIU alumni, one of the best memories I have is of the Career Center. Ms. Taylor helped me to improve my résumé and cover letter. As an international student, coming to this country made me realize that the format and information in the résumé is very different from my country, Venezuela. Where I am from, résumés require a picture of the applicant, personal information, civil status, religion, and age. This is not what an employer needs to know in the US. After meeting with Ms. Taylor, I learned that each cover letter has to be different. It is important for you to be able to identify the needs of the employer and communicate them in your cover letter and résumé.
I also learned the importance of using suitable keywords to get the best results during my career search. Without using the keywords it makes it difficult for employers to notice your résumé, for you to get an interview, and for you to get your next career opportunity. Thanks to the Career Center, I have a better understanding.
Furthermore, I never thought that answering simple questions while being interviewed could be complicated. As a future alumni, you have to learn how to prepare for an interview, build your confidence, and use the right words to communicate your skills. During an interview, you have to be clear in your responses to every question that an employer may ask you. Again, the Career Center was there to be of assistance.
My reasons why you should go to the Career Center:
- If you want to work in the US (CPT-OPT)
- If you want to volunteer outside VIU (you will have to provide your résumé)
- If you want to work on-campus
- If you want your cover letter and résumé to shine
- If you want to learn how to properly answer interview questions
Thanks to the Career Center, my cover letter and résumé were attractive enough to get calls from employers for interviews. I am now employed full-time in the US.
I am pleased to have an opportunity to be one of the students to participate in “Getting the Word Out” for the Career Center. Within the past three months, I have attended five events hosted by Robyn Taylor and the Career Center team:
- Volunteer Information Session
- Career Center Open House
- Volunteer Appreciation Luncheon
- CPT Information Session
- “Marketing Yourself” Résumé Workshop
With each event, I have been able to gain professional and personal development skills.
One of the most helpful events that the Career Center organized was the résumé workshop. As a student, I was able to receive a better understanding of what I need to include in my own cover letter and résumé. I would suggest that if you need help in writing your résumé go by the Career Center for assistance.
Another highlight for me was the opportunity to attend the Volunteer Luncheon. I really appreciated the luncheon because I was able to talk with other students who share my interest in helping others. Added bonus: we all received a certificate!
My advice to all students is to visit the Career Center. They give great advice and are very nice. Make sure to sign up to participate in their events. You don’t want to miss anything!