I Graduated… What Now?

Lessons and advice on the job search from one recent graduate to another.

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“Why are you still here?” This question, posed by Rob’s college professor, woke him up. At 21 Rob’s income more than doubled that of his professors. Should he stay at Wright State, cutting hair and working part-time on his direct sales gig? Or, should he take a non-conforming approach, and concentrate solely on what he does best- connecting?

So, what did you decide?

I decided to take the professor up on his suggestion. I followed my dream.

It’s been five years since that decision. What are your thoughts?

I’m glad that it happened the way it did. One thing I gained was experience, which takes you to the next level, unlike your course work.

But the direct-sales gig didn’t end up being the be-all end-all?

When I was in college, the position earned me $5,000/month. When I dropped out and focused 100% of my time on it I was making between $15,000-20,000/month. Life was good. Unfortunately, the company downsized and so did my paycheck. One thing I wish I would have done better, was invested in relationships with people that weren’t involved in my business. I made the amateur mistake of only surrounding myself with people that were doing what I was doing. I cut-off anyone (and everyone) that didn’t share my desire for the money chase. Luckily, I was young and had time to recover (those friendships, and my bank account).

I loving refer to this as your “financiaholic” days (copyright pending.) How did you accomplish this?

I took 6-8 months of reading, studying, and investing in myself. During the course of my direct sales marketing run, everything was about external presence. To be fulfilled, I had to get passed the feelings of failure, and make myself knowledgeable, which would ultimately make me an asset to my next endeavor.

Which was?

I got into Real Estate, which helped me recover, and allowed me to build relationships and feed my desire to connect with people. This led me into philanthropy, non-profit, and national networking events. Finally, it wasn’t about the money, but rather the satisfaction of helping others.

What do you do now, Connectionaire?

I can’t just give away all my answers! To find out, check me out on LinkedIn, and my blog.

“Everyone wants to ride in the limo with you. But, you want the friends that want to take the bus with you when the limo breaks down.”


Never one to back down from a challenge, this maverick has decided to take on a corporate internship position while keeping up with her freelance work. Claire took the time to open up with us about where she is, where she’s going, and how she’s doing it. Familiarize yourself with this decorated graduate and learn from her experiences.

What is it about graphic design that has you so determined to make it a career?

I’ve wanted to be a graphic designer since I was in eighth grade, so it’s just always been a dream of mine. I think it’s the idea of communicating through art that really draws me to the field.

If your resume could talk, what would you want it to SCREAM?


What’s your perfect career scenario?

In an ideal world, I would love to work for a graphic design firm with other creative people. I love environments where I can brainstorm with other people and be constantly surrounded by creativity.

Given the current economic situation, what are you doing to stay in the “we need this girl” hiring category?

Currently, I’m serving a few days a week to pay the bills, and also working with OhioHealth as a web design contingent. I’m doing all I can do to be able to both pay my bills and get experience in the field of graphic design.

What is the wildest design request you’ve ever received?

Once a security guard at Otterbein College asked me to recreated Jones Soda labels featuring himself and his wife for their wedding reception.

OK, Claire. Thank you for your time. Where can I see your work in person?

IMG_3804Currently, my work is featured as the poster and marketing designs for Otterbein College Theatre Department’s 2009-2010 season.

Don’t be shy- Contact Claire!


Prepare to be impressed!




    Comment by KATHY | October 30, 2009 | Reply

  2. hay. how much u charge for speaking engagements. i didnt see your email or phone number. iono?

    Comment by sam | November 23, 2009 | Reply

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