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Career Fair Success Stories

Not sure what the few months after graduation look like? We’re here to demystify the murky period between graduation and your next big move.

We were able to chat with Monica Harris, a School of Communication alumna, on how she turned her degree in communications to a successful human resources career. Monica graduated in 2011 with a BA in Advertising and Public Relations and like any true communication student, she learned along the way how to network and the importance of taking initiative.

Keep reading to learn how Monica was able to take advantage of the recruiters at the Career Fair to land her first job at Groupon, the career journey she’s been on and how she now spends her days recruiting future talent for her company. Monica provides resume and job searching tips in her personal blog as well and will be back tomorrow with more of these tips.

How did you land your first job?

I was a Human Resources/Recruiting Research Intern for yet another start-up company my senior year. I worked on a global healthcare account with my account manager and it was an amazing experience. From the moment I accepted the position in August through the entire 9 months I was there the end goal was to land a full-time position with the company.

Ever the cautious one though, I still attended all of Loyola’s career fairs – especially the SOC ones. At the SOC fair, Groupon was there with 2 recruiters representing them. I met Allison and expressed my interest in positions more marketing and PR related and she said that was her area to recruit for! She told me a bit about a Planning Coordinator position that was brand new (because, of course, Groupon was/is a start-up…starting to see a trend?) and I could feel myself getting super excited over the prospect of working for this young, hip company. She told me to keep in touch and that we could begin a more formal process in May. While still pursuing the full-time position at the company where I interned, I also kept in touch with Allison A LOT. I emailed her once a month (I put a reminder in my calendar) to reiterate how interested I was in Groupon and the position. Finally, in late April/early May, it was time to begin the formal interview process. I spoke with Allison over the phone and then went into the office for an in person interview. A few days after interviewing with Groupon, I had a verbal offer from my internship but no offer letter yet (the company is based out of Australia, so they were waiting for approvals and paperwork to come through). A week later, I had an offer from Groupon. I took a night to “think about it” even though my mind was really already made up. The next day I accepted the offer with Groupon.

I was with Groupon for about 1 year and 5 months and boy was it a rollercoaster of a ride. In my almost year and a half with the company, I had 10 different desks in two different buildings. Things changed fast and they changed OFTEN.

However, by the late summer of 2012 I was ready to be in a more stable environment. I began putting feelers out, applied to positions using Ramblerlink and LinkedIn and networked a little here and there. One of the positions that I applied to off RamblerLink called me and 2 weeks later I was offered the Senior HR Recruiter position at The Jacobson Group. It was an opportunity I couldn’t pass up: a step up in my career, added responsibility and the opportunity to work with a very established organization. I accepted the job and that is where I am today, just HR-ing away in the Loop!

Tomorrow Monica will be back with tips on resume and interview success!