My college, Robinson College of Business (RCB) in Georgia State University (GSU), has a website called Robinson Career Connection (RCC). On this website, there are vast job/ internship postings. I went on there to find an internship; I found an opening with Turner Broadcasting Inc., in a field that relates directly to me: accounting and finance. I immediately ‘dropped’ my resume, and hoped for the best!
I’ve heard many people say things like recruiters don’t like seeing “complicated” names on resumes; but really, am I supposed to change my name for an application? Yeah, I didn’t think so either!
Not too long after this, an email from TBS came in. I remember reading that email – eagerly anticipating good news! Yours truly was called back for the first round of interviews! I was flabbergasted (I really wanted to use this word people 😀 )! I honestly didn’t want to inform anyone that I’d started the process for this opportunity; but ended up telling some family members, for prayers and support.The first interview was with a young staff, 25 years old at best, recent alum of my institution. When she read my name, and heard my accent, she figured out I was African. She then immediately said, “oh, I went to Cameroun last summer!” I said, “oh, lovely!” I could have ended there, as I’d never been to Cameroun myself, but I went a step further and asked her: “whom did you go with?” …
(Backtrack to 1 year before the interview)
At the annual accounting career fair hosted by my school, I sighted a petit woman in the Ernst and Young section, clearly African. I waited in line to talk to her. As a sophomore (2nd year college student), I knew there was no way I was getting an accounting internship with one of the big 4 firms, as they are typically offered after your 4th year as an accounting major; but, I understood the power of making connections. She seemed like someone I could relate with, and I wanted to pick her brains on how she achieved what I aspire to achieve. We talked, and she gave me practical things to do within the next year to help me prepare for a great internship. After the conversation, I boldly asked, “Can you please be my mentor?” She said yes! She said yeahhhh! Lol. A couple of meetings and cups of froyo later, we had a solid relationship.
Back to the interview, the interviewer replied, “Oh, with my friend, we went for her traditional marriage… ” Yeah! You guessed right! The friend she went to Cameroun with was indeed my mentor from a year ago! And they were BEST FRIENDS!! I quickly chipped in how my mentor, her friend (hehehe) was the one who helped me build my resume to the standard it was in.
This set the tone for a nice chat for the next half hour, and eased my nerves. Yes, yes, I got called back for the next rounds of interviews.
Stay tuned for what happened next…