A Texas State student media panel made up of five experienced students in mass communication spoke to high school students from Laredo's LBJ High School to discuss what is important for incoming freshman to know before ever setting foot on campus as an official college student.
Dan Jakpo, a member of Bobcat Nation and Bella Vista; Veronica Garcia, Ad Club; Joey Hernandez, public relations major; Miata Shaw, Apple employee; and Adrian Omar Ramirez, University Star news reporter, were part of the panel.
The panel expressed to the high school students that internships, networking and job shadowing were key.
"Even if internships are unpaid, which most of them are, it's experience to add to your resume," Garcia said. "Job shadowing helps you learn if you really want to do what you think you want to do."
Whatever path high schools choose to take in their career fields, they should know how to do a little bit of everything.
"Don't feel limited by what you haven't done yet because you are going to do it," Ramirez said. "Get involved in social media and a variety of different media. The more skills you have on your resume the more impressive it will be to employers."
Most students seem prepared from a resume standpoint but were a little confused when it came to internships and what they were all about. The panel stressed while it's not required to have an internship, it is unlikely to land a job if an employer cannot see experience that can easily transition into the position being applied for.
Shaw, who works for Apple in Apple's college program at Texas State, believes that just putting yourself out there is a big reason why students become successful.
You never know who you may meet," Shaw said. "Print your own business cards and make you have them with you at all times."
Even the simplest problems like grammar, spelling and punctuation cannot be overlooked, which students often times may not realize is hurting their applications, resumes and first impressions with potential bosses.
"It's important to write well in any field you go in to because it's the most basic form of communication," Jakpo said. "Approach talking to professionals in as professional a way as possible."