Advice from a Friend: Tips to Rock your Inteview

I figure with everyone graduating and searching for jobs, that I’d write a post about interviews.  This is inspired after a classmate of mine talked to us about her rigorous interview  process  with Hubspot.  I’m not claiming to be an interview expert or anything, I haven’t even gotten a real career job yet, but this is some advice I’ve heard from classmates, friends, and professors that have helped me procure internships and jobs in the past.

You can read a million articles on how to get interviewed, watch videos on interviews, and talk to people for tips, but none of that will matter if you don’t have confidence.  You need to go into that interview like you are a rock star that is pouring with the superstar attitude you will bring to that job.  Now this isn’t to say you can be a douche bag to your potential employer, but it is essential to believe in yourself.

It is also important to do your homework before any interview.  Google search the company your interviewing with and find out as much about them as possible.  You will look very impressive if you can fire back an intellectual rebuttal to a question they may ask you about their company.  Ask them about their “core values” and how their business plans reflect the values to claim to abide by.  Not only can you learn a lot about the company with their answer to this, but it’ll show the interviewer that you really understand the roots of a good business model.  At the very least you’ll catch them by surprise and stick out.

A very wise professor told me to hold your self in high regards.  Instead of going in with the “what can I get from them attitude” go in with a “how will they benefit from me” mentality instead.  You’ve been training to be a professional for years, don’t fall into the slave mind-set that we belong to corporate America.

Now I’d like to address my classmate’s, Brittany Leaning, unique interview with Hubspot.  Hubspot is an innovative all in one marketing software company that focuses on online initiatives.  Naturally the questions were specifically oriented towards marketing and Brittany’s proficiency with it.

Hubspot asked Brittany questions like:

“If you had $10,000 to spend on (insert company name) social media, what would you do with it?”

“Give an example of a time when you feel you failed at your internship”

“If you could have 10,000 likes or 100,000 likes, which would you prefer? Why?

“How much do you think a “like” is worth and how much would you spend on a “like”?

Now I don’t know about you, but these are quite some difficult and ridiculous questions that I’ve never even thought about.  I believe they asked her these types of questions to get her thinking about the transition from an marketing internship position, into a fully-capable revenue making employee with a career in marketing.  They also asked her “what other courses besides marketing classes have you taken?”  I believe this was to establish how well-rounded she is and what other insight she can offer on topics different from a markers perspective.  Brittany described her interview as an intense process with her interviewer being extremely aggressive and harsh.  We believe this is their way of weeding out the wolf from the sheep.  Brittany handled herself like a champ and now has a job offer from them.

Not all questions are going to be as crazy as the one’s Brittany was asked, however, they most likely make you think in a way you normally wouldn’t.  It is crucial to anticipate this happening and handle the situation with confidence.  Bring in old work from live projects you’ve worked on, a list of questions to ask the company, and any measurable metrics you may have that show ROI.

You’re now an official business professional.  Act accordingly and remember to smile :).

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AHHH FINALS!

Finals are here… You know what that means, It’s CRUNCH TIME!  Tis the season for infinite hours in the library, 100 pound backpacks full of books, and going bald from ripping your hair out.  If your like me, your running on 100% procrastination mode.  This is where every excuse in the book gets whipped out.  Somehow I always rationalize things in anyway, in order not to do work.

“I can’t do work when I’m hungry, so I’ll go home and make a sandwich first”.  Or “I need to chill for a minute before I tackle the mountain of homework I have, so just I’ll watch TV for 30 minutes”.  Which is shortly followed by “Oh another How I Met Your Mother? episode is on? I’ll just watch one more”.  Then there’s always the classic “I can’t go to the library when I’m this tired, I’ll just take a quick power nap before I write my 58973901 page dissertation on (insert boring topic here).

Finals suck, we all know that.  There’s always going to be some excuse that will “magically” make finals not suck all of a sudden.  The truth is, we just have to suck it up do the work.  That way we have time for the important things like our chicken fried and cold beer on a Friday night.  Here are a couple of tips that I find really help to finish the year off strong.

  1. Go to the library:  It’s better to do work in an uncomfortable setting, sitting upright in a chair at a desk.  Snuggling up in bed with your laptop only leads to one thing… some  ZZZZZZ’s.
  2. Don’t procrastinate: Ideally people should be studying a little bit throughout the whole semester. The more time you spend studying, the higher grade you will get.  Hard work is rewarded in the end.
  3. Don’t kill yourself:  It’s important to study, but don’t over do it.  Your brain can only process so much, so spending 10 and half hours straight in the library is only a waste of time.  Take breaks, breathe some fresh air and stretch.  Your brain will feel better with breaks and you will learn a lot more effectively.
  4. Don’t go on Facebook/social media before:  It is so easy to start up your computer and check your Facebok for “5 minutes”.  The reality is 5 minutes turns into an hour of unproductiveness.  When you start off on social Facebook, you get distracted with a million of other things, which blurs your focus to a million of other things when it comes time to actually do work.
  5. Eat: Make sure to always pack food or eat before you start your work.  Your brain works best on a full stomach and food stimulates healthy brain activity.  Always make sure to eat a good breakfast/lunch before a test.
  6. Don’t re-read the entire textbook: Having the “Oh crap I haven’t even opened the book this semester, so I have to read the entire book” mentality is bad.  Not only does this take a lot of time, it’s simply a waste of time. You’re only going to fill your brain with a bunch of new information right before the test and then not retain any of the important things. Read chapter summaries, notes, charts, pictures or maps that might be in the textbook.
  7. Sleep: Sometimes people see sleep as being overrated and pull the 3-day in a row all nighters.  We all perform properly when rested.  It is crucial to get a good night’s sleep before taking a final.  It’s scientifically proven that humans perform better with a good nights sleep.  Make time to sleep; you’ll feel better and test better.  Do not underestimate the power of sleep.

Click here’s for some more studying tips to Ace your finals

(Funny video of Dom Mazzetti on Finals)

Cool Pin I found on Pinterest

Source: dr4ward.com via Elaine on Pinterest

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A Look Into The Hunger Games: May The Odd’s be Ever In Your Favor

Last weekend I finally got my chance to see the new movie “The Hunger Games.”  Having read all three books from The Hunger Games trilogy, I’ve been eagerly awaiting to see this movie.

Written by Suzanne Collins, “The Hunger Games” started off as the first of a three book series, including “Catching Fire” and “MockingJay”.  I personally loved all three of these books and read them within a week.  People are saying “The Hunger Games” is the new “Harry Potter.” I speak in terms of kick-ass suspenseful action, amazingly written plots and characters, and important underlying life-themes; not another story about wizards and witches fighting for the survival of the magical world.  The Hunger Games movie has become a huge success, racking in approximately $155 million on it’s opening weekend.  It has set multiple records, including the third strongest opening weekend behind “Harry Potter and the Deathly Hollows: Part 2” and “The Dark Knight”, according to Hollywood.com

Being a huge fan of the books, I was very skeptic about the movie and if it’d actually follow the original story line.  Often times when a book hits the big screen, critics scrutinize the movie about every detail the movie missed or did wrong.  This is not the case for  “The Hunger Games”.  I personally felt the movie did the book justice.  It followed the story line almost exactly, while cutting out unimportant information to keep the film watch-able.  Director Gary Ross worked directly with writer Suzanne Collins to ensure the movie captured the essence that is The Hunger Games.

I can describe this movie as a combination of “The Truman Show” meets “Gladiator”. It is an action packed film with the perfect amount of drama and romance sprinkled in.  Even having reading the book, the movie kept me engaged and on the edge of my seat, wondering what was going to happen next. There was never a dull moment in the 2 and half hours the movie ran and it never seemed to be drag on.

Ross did a stupendous job of picking out each characters and how we all imagine them to be when reading the books.  Jennifer Lawrence did an amazing job of portraying the rebellious, hardcore, sexy persona of the story’s hero, Katniss Everdeen.  Even the settings were beautifully depicted from the poverty stricken scenery of district 12, to the fantasy world of the Capitol, and finally the elegantly balanced nature of the blood-ridden Cornucopia battlefield.

(Attention Spoiler Alerts)

My only complaints I have are the slight variations they made to shorten the length of the film.  The movie changed how Katniss received her highly symbolic “mockingjay” pin that ultimately becomes the symbol of the inevitable rebellion.  The movie also doesn’t fully develop the background relationships of Katniss with her mother, Gale, Peeta, Haymitch, Rue, Effie and the various other people of Panem Katniss encounters.  It is not surprising they omit this out since the book spends numerous pages building these relationships.  Another thing they cut short was the saucy romance scene of Katniss and Peeta in the cave.  In the book Haymitch sends a silver parachute to Katniss containing sleeping syrup for Peeta, so Katniss can sneak away and grab the crucial backpack they need.  In the book this scene really builds the relationship between Katniss and Peeta and shows the initial spark between them.

The movie also changed the final battle scene between the ‘mutation dogs’ and Katniss, Peeta and Cato.  In the book the dogs are made from the bodies of the fallen tributes, which are reflected in their cold eyes.  This creates even more hatred from our heroes towards the Capitol and the sinister brutality they are capable of.  A final comment I have is the ending.  Although it was a good Hollywood ending, they left out the part where Peeta proposes to Katniss, as they become the first power couple to win the Hunger Games.  This sets the stage for the next book, as they must now indefinitely keep up the persona of the “star-crossed lovers”.

Even with these discrepancies, I feel the director included the biggest and necessary parts of the story.  All in all this is an amazing movie that will keep readers of the book enticed and blow the minds of new watchers.  I highly recommend watching the movie and reading all the books.

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Saint Patty’s Day: A Holiday Worth Celebrating.

Last week was the very fun, playfully hearty, highly anticipated Saint Patty’s Day.  Like me, I’m sure everyone’s celebrations was a ridiculously packed day of Guinness, Irish-car-bombs, green shamrocks, kegs, and screaming like drunken idiots.  Because I studied abroad in Ireland for a semester, I became an unofficial, official member of the Irish community on this day.  It was a great time to reminisce on my experiences abroad by doing what the Irish do best, drink.  People who haven’t been to Ireland may think I’m being stereotypical by saying this, but I speak truth behind my words.  Irish social life revolves around the pub.  It is not uncommon to have business meetings with clients or class meetings at a pub, believe me I know from experience.  There is no surprise why people ruthlessly destroy their livers by endlessly binge drinking to celebrate this day.

Saint Patrick’s Day, or the Feast of Saint Patrick is the most widely celebrated saint’s day in the world.  It is typically characterized by attending church services, wearing green attire, festive parades and floats, day free pass on eating restrictions for lent, and alcohol consumption.  It is a cultural and religious holiday that commemorates the most famous patron saint of Ireland, Saint patrick.  This day is also a celebration for the arrival of Christianity in Ireland.  It was made an official feast day in the early 17th century and is recognized by the Catholic Church, the Anglican Communion, the Eastern Orthodox Church, and the Lutheran Church.  Saint Patricks Day has become a celebration of Irish culture in general all throughout Ireland and the Irish Diaspora.

I find this is a great holiday because of everything we have gained from Irish culture.  It recognizes diversity and immigration.  Many people forget the vast hardship the Irish community suffered.  It is amazing how our society has progressed to a point that commiserates people we once segregated 50 years ago.  Plus any holiday that actually celebrates drinking is okay in my book.

For me this holiday is always the perfect break from school by hanging with amazing friends and getting silly for a weekend.  Some of my personal traditions have always produced an optimum level of fun for me.  This year was 10 a.m at the bar, day parties with kegs, and drinking celebrations at Rasputines at night.  Previous years have brought day drinking at parades, any and all drinking games, and my personal favorite playing “Hey Bob” to the movie “Boondock Saints” (For those who don’t know, “Hey Bob” is a game where you drink at a common word or phrase said throughout a movie).  My friend’s and I pick the word “Fuck”, if you’ve ever seen “Boondock Saints” you can easily see how deadly this game can be.

(Warning: Video contains profanity)

I’d love to hear what everyone else’s quirky Saint Patty’s Day traditions are. I know it’s late, but here’s a toast to Ireland –  Happy Saint Pattrick’s Day, Everyone’s Irish Tonight!

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Bahamas Baby

Last week was the highly anticipated SPRING BREAK  we all waited for.  Many people traveled to fun and exotic places.  I was one of them.  My friends Oliver, Travis, Dave and I booked a trip at the Flamingo Bay Resort in Freeport, Bahamas.  This would be a trip of epic proportion.

Let me first give some quick boring background of where we were.  Our resort was located in the Grand Bahamas, in a city called Freeport.  The Grand Bahamas is the northern most of the islands of Bahamas, and the closet of the major islands to the United States (56 miles off the coast of Florida).  The Grand Bahamas is the 5th largest island among the Bahamas Island chain of about 700 islands and 2,400 cays.  The island is about 93 miles long west to east and 12 miles north to south (so basically it is SMALL).

Okay, back to the story.  My friends and I embarked on our journey from the snowy, mountain tops of Vermont, to the beachy shores of Fort Lauderdale Florida, where we would catch a ferry ride to the Bahamas the next day.  It was great to start in Florida because we got to meet everyone going to Paradise with us, as well as getting a taste of the sunny, bathing-suit-wearing, stunna-shade-rocking, lifestyle that is Florida.  After some exploring and celebratory night-drinking, we were ready to begin our “booze-cruise” down to our SPRING BREAK 2012.   It all began with the ferry ride…

(Fort Lauderdale, Florida)

Now our impression of the cruise down to the Bahamas would be some what like the Lonely Island’s song of “I’m on a Boat“.  It would be one big party of drinking, dancing, and celebrations.  Boy we’re we wrong.  Our ferry-ride-of-death consisted of vomit, barf bags, and major sea-sickness.  Apparently roaming waves of 8-10 feet + a flat bottom boat = an ugly scene of stomach vile carnage.  It was actually quite comical now that I reflect back on it.  Picture a boat full of college students, with every other person laying dead on the floor or buried in a bag of throw-up.   It was so bad even the staff was puking.  NONETHELESS.  We arrived at our destination in one piece (some of us in pieces).

(Ferry-Death-Cruise)

The weather was GORGEOUS, the liquor was cheap, and the native Bahamians were the chillest, friendliest, easy-going group of people I’ve ever encountered.  Freeport is a very quaint little town that anyone would fall in love with.  When we arrived at our resort, we were greeted with “welcome to heaven”, and it basically was.  The resort we stayed at was amazing.  The rooms were perfect for crashing at night, and the pool was ENORMOUS.  There was a water-slide (which we raged numerous times), a lazy river, built-in pools beds, and the best part, a swim up bar.  The swim up bar was the scene for most of our insanity… Whipped-cream body-shots, lucrative chants, bar-top dancing… It was just an amazing atmosphere that combined the perfect level of relaxation and craziness.

(Our view from our room, swim-up bar & Taino Beach)

At night our adventures continued at Port Lucaya, which I can compare to the downtown scene here.  Dollar shots at every bar, a dance pit in the middle of everything, and featured stage to get your boogy on.  One night we spent at a local event called the “Fish Fry”.  This featured great Bahamian food, and a DJ dance party in a great environment.  My friend Dave and I even ended up in a hilarious dance-off against some local Bahamians.  All-in-all it was a great way to cap off my last Spring Break of my college career.  I would love to hear about everyone’s adventures and I hope you enjoyed yours as much as I did mine.

(Port Lucaya & Fish Fry)

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Meme Meme

So I don’t know if anyone else has noticed, but I feel there has been an explosion of  memes circulating around Facebook recently.  For people who don’t know, memes are those images with some kind of funny statement or comment that correlates with the image.  I’ve just learned about internet memes, so I’ll give a quick crash-course lesson for those of you that are like me.

A textbook definition of an internet meme (pronounced as meem; not may-may, or meh-meh as I like to say it) is an idea or concept that is spread throughout the internet. They rooted from the word meme which is “a behavior or style that spreads from person to person within a culture”.  Internet memes may be a hyperlink, video, picture, website, hashtag, or just a word or phrase, such as intentionally misspelling the word “stupid” as “stoopid” or “the” as “teh.

They are usually created through some sort of social interaction (reaction faces),

pop culture reference (Chuck Noris)

or a situation people often find themselves in (Awkward Penguin).

Because they are primarily seen on social networks, blogs, emails, new sources, etc. they can grow extremely fast and gain world-wide popularity in a matter of days.  They also show up almost instantly to all the major websites, which makes it nearly impossible to track who gets bragging rights for starting the meme.

There is no surprise that internet meme’s have caught the eyes of viral marketers and researchers.  From a marketing standpoint, they are a great inexpensive form of mass advertising.  PR, advertisers, and marketing professionals are embracing internet memes and using them as a source for “guerrilla marketing” to create a buzz for their product or service.  Meme’s have even created its own category or marketing called memetic marketing: which is the practice of using memes to market products or services.  People like memes because they appeal to the most recent fads in a trendy, comical, and clever way.

Here are a bunch of internet memes that I like too chuckle at.


(Old, but one of my favorites)

Find your own meme to giggle about. 

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Womp Womp

Last week I peeked behind the secret world of a hipster as I womped away at my first Dubstep show.  Yes, I went to Rusko.  To say the least, this show was AWESOME!  Rusko performed at the Memorial Auditorium, where all types of people with glow sticks, funky glasses without lenses, and bright florescent body paint gathered to listen to the tightly-coiled-productions-with-overwhelming-bass-lines-and-reverberant-drum-patterns- that is DUBSTEP.

Rusko only performed till 11 oclock, but that didn’t stop the never-ending energy of us Dubstep fanatics.  After the show, everyone migrated downtown, where Papadosio would be sending it hard, by giving us on an out of this world after party performance.  This was my first time hearing the five piece electronic rock band that purposely defies genre classification.  Like Rusko, Papadosio was AWESOME!

I find it amazing how the music world has evolved so much.  Musicians have taken it to the next level and have created their own electronic dance genre that everyone can get weird too.  Dubstep has exploded since its 1998 dark, 2-step garage music that it once was.  Since 2009, it has become a globally recognize style of music that is greatly influencing mainstream artists and songs.  We Americans have even taken Dubstep a step further and created Brostep.  This is the post-Dubstep era where we pump up our bass by 130 beats-per-minute.  Unlike traditional dubstep production styles, that emphasize sub-bass content, brostep accentuates the middle register and features “robotic fluctuations and metal-esque aggression.”  Basically it’s when an artist uses mainstream songs and WOMPIFY it.  Most people would recognize Brostep from artists like Skrillex and Bassnectar.

The very popular Bassnectar remix song “Lights”

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