QUESTIONS FOR... Chris Hildreth
Steve Dalton M.B.A. ’04
Robert Bonnie M.E.M. ’94, former Undersecretary for Natural Resources and Environment at the U.S. Department of Agriculture, returned to Duke as a Rubenstein Fellow to explore conservation in rural America.
Jada Brooks B.S.N. ’05, Ph.D. ’11 launched a cardiovascular study of Lumbee Native American women in southeastern N.C. after receiving a grant from the National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences.
Sterly Wilder ’83, associate vice president for alumni affairs, talks with Steve Dalton M.B.A. ’04, the director of daytime career services at the Fuqua School of Business and the author of The 2-Hour Job Search (Ten Speed Press). In his role at Fuqua, Dalton is charged with helping the business school’s 900 daytime M.B.A. students master the job search before they leave Duke.
You started off your career as a chemical engineer. How did you find your way into career services at Fuqua?
no amount of work on your résumé will ever get you a job. But if you can consistently turn strangers into advocates, you are going to be employed for the rest of your life.
Before business school, I had played it safe. I became a chemical engineer, but I really wanted to go into marketing. I eventually did that, got my dream job at General Mills, realized I hated my dream job—and then had no idea what to do next. I didn’t know how to navigate the real world and how to find jobs after the college career center goes away. I decided to interview people who were happy with their jobs—and that included two colleagues at Fuqua. The next thing I knew, I was working in career services at Fuqua.
How can alumni and students leverage technology for their job search?
So how can job seekers figure it out? What are they doing that isn’t working? Adam Baker
Shirley Collado A.M. ’96, Ph.D. ’99 was named the ninth president of Ithaca College in New York. —Sarah Haas
Have news to share about your achievements and milestones? Submit a class note and read your classmates’ latest news by logging into alumni.duke.edu.
I think people get overwhelmed by treating the job search process as infinite. For example, the likelihood of success from applying for an online job posting is close to zero, but it costs you definite time and definite energy. A job seeker can apply for job after job online, but the reality is that’s not the way companies hire. The bottom line is that
I’m a big believer in right tech rather than high-tech. I think there’s always going to be a new app, a new website, a new flavor of the day that will demand an hour of your time and then discourage you more. Take the example of LinkedIn. You could devote a lifetime to learning all that LinkedIn does and building out your profile. But in reality, only a couple things are critical to learn how to use—such as LinkedIn groups. When you join a group, you can look up members and message them for free. Similarly, think about the new Duke alumni network. It’s a wonderful resource that alumni and students can use to exclusively message alumni who may be able to help them in their career journey. Or, take the example of a website I like called www.email-format.com. Let’s say you’re looking for the e-mail address of someone at a certain company and you can’t find it online. This site will suggest the format of that e-mail. In the end, it’s less about using all technology and more about using the technology that moves the needle.
—Edited by Christina Holder
Includes Duke Forward campaign insert