The importance of being resourceful (Published on MinorityMBAs.com)

Resources can be the difference between success and failure. While resources are critical, being resourceful is a vital attribute in itself. Being resourceful helps one achieve their goals whether it’s short or long term and thus is a key skill to develop.

Attending an Ivy League school provides students with vast amounts of resources. It serves as a huge advantage in terms of getting a job amongst others compared to attending a small liberal arts college. Even without attending an Ivy League school, there are numerous ways students can tap into resources of large universities.

Internships in renowned research institutions allow interns to attain experience while also tapping into the university’s resources. The Columbia Institute for Tele-Information at Columbia Business School offers a challenging research internship program for undergraduates and graduates. Another way to leverage on university resources is to get in touch with professors at research institutions to see if they require assistance in their research studies. Also volunteering at university conferences gives students an access pass to the event while boosting resume credentials. Schools also have partnerships with other universities which allow students to take classes in any of the participating schools.

When it comes to applying for jobs and internships, most are familiar with Monster, HotJobs and CareerBuilder. With the ease of applying to jobs and internships through these career portals, employers are stormed with hundreds of online applications especially when the national unemployment rate for March 2010 was at 9.7 percent. From applicants’ perspective, it’s hard to stand out and even to get a response; from companies’ perspective, they have a huge pile of applications and might have second thoughts on posting a job online next time. Thus, lesser known career portals become perfect alternatives to the mass-marketed job search engines. Startuphire.com is a great online resource for individuals interested in start-up jobs and internships. LinkedIn is another valuable resource and as the cover story of the April issue of Fortune magazine claims, if you don’t have a profile on LinkedIn, you’re nowhere. It also states that the reason LinkedIn works so well for professional matchmaking is that most of its members already have jobs. Also, there are some jobs posted exclusively on LinkedIn.

It is ever more important to be resourceful at a`time`when the labor market is tight. Hard work, perseverance along with some creativity could help both students looking for internships and graduates looking for jobs.

This article is featured on MinorityMBAs.com

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