Peer Advice From Riley ’22

My name is Riley Bel Bruno and I am a senior Communication major. When it comes to career exploration, I am a huge advocate for starting early and starting now. The best decision I ever made was walking in and making an appointment at the Knowlton Center during my first year on campus. If it weren’t for the advice and guidance offered to me by the career advisors throughout the years, I wouldn’t have found confidence in my networking and interviewing skills. I know career exploration can be intimidating but the Knowlton Center is here to ease the process. In addition to making an appointment with an advisor, keep reading to learn three helpful tips I wish I had known earlier!

  1. Make connections with your professors that extend beyond the classroom. Having an adult on campus that you know, and trust is extremely valuable. One way I make this effort is by setting an appointment up with my professors early in the year. During the meeting, I outline my strengths and weaknesses as a student; this opens the door for meaningful conversation and helps me hold myself accountable. Maintaining a relationship with professors helps provide a sense of stability and support, and it has made all the difference in my Denison career.
  2. Plan ahead and incorporate Denison opportunities in your career pursuits. What are your career goals over the next four years? Write them down so you can visualize them, then look at what Denison’s campus has to offer and find opportunities that will help you achieve your career goals. Take some time now to think of leadership positions, clubs, research, and other experiences that could be building blocks to achieving your career plan.
  3. Start networking now! When I began to dive into my exploration, I assumed that being an extrovert would carry me through the process. While a friendly demeanor certainly helps, there is much more to networking than simply knowing how to talk to people. It’s about knowing what to ask, and what to share. Networking is a skill, just like any other skill, it requires practice. The best way to start practicing is to reach out to young alumni, so choose a student that you saw in a lot of your courses that graduated recently. Connect with them on LinkedIn and ask if you can set up a time to learn more about their postgraduate transition. Get out there and start networking!

I look forward to meeting you all at the Knowlton Center 🙂

By Riley Bel Bruno
Riley Bel Bruno Drop-In Peer Coach