CAMPUS LIFE Victor the beaver's guide to the interwebs

9 out-of-the-box ways to secure your dream job/internship

by ValoreBooks

You know the routine: search endlessly for a job or internship, submit a cover letter and resume, then cross your fingers that you stood out enough to get called in for an offer. In some rare cases, however, an applicant will break the routine, get creative, and do something crazy to stand out. This approach can be risky, but if done right it can be just what you need to land your dream job or internship. Check out how these people did just that:

1. Create a billboard ad

Billboard ad - 9 out-of-the-box ways to secure your dream job/internship

Adam Pacitti put the last of his cash to good use and created a billboard ad with the words “I spent my last 500 (pounds) on this billboard. Please give me a job.” Beneath this quote was a URL that lead to his digital CV. Although this type of investment might seem like a big risk, if executed correctly, it can really pay off in the end. In Adam’s case, he received 60 job offers.

2. Make your resume edible

Chocolate Bar Resume

What’s better than giving your resume to an employer on high quality paper? Giving it to your employer in the form of a chocolate bar. Informative and delicious! Who can say no to that? Consider other ways you can incorporate your resume into something edible. This would be especially effective for any job in the food industry.

3. Put together a social media campaign

Braden Young resume social campaign

Although most people wouldn’t consider communication via social media a realistic way to ask for a job, but when done right it can set you apart from other applicants. One prospective employee created a large scale campaign he called “Hire Me, Krispy Kreme”. He performed social outreach with all of Krispy Kreme’s social channels in hopes they would hire him. Guess what? It worked! Any communication method can be a good one. Why not social?

4. Take advantage of the company’s site

Pinterest job Application

There is hardly anything more appealing to a company than their prospective employee having interest and proficiency in their product. Jeanne Hwang was pursuing a job with Pinterest, and translated her CV to Pinterest’s interface to make a creative and personalized resume. Although she didn’t secure a job with Pinterest, she did receive an offer from Pintics, a leading Pinterest analytics company.

5. Make an interactive video

Graeme Anthony Interactive job application

Why hand over a resume on a piece of paper when you can utilize the power of the internet and create an interactive video? This concept was successful for Graeme Anthony not only because it showed a creative use of digital resources, but it also made his credentials public and brought job seekers to him. He is now employed full-time.

6. Use childhood inspiration

Lego job application

Legos are cool no matter how old you are. Leah Bowman made use of her childhood skill and personalized her resume by creating a Lego version of herself, emphasizing her transferable skills. You don’t have to use Legos specifically, but tap into something that really matters to you and take advantage of the empathetic effect it might have on potential employers.

7. Advertise on Google

Google Ad job application

Google AdWords has some pretty nifty targeting tools. Alec Brownstein put these tools to use by using the names of top executives as keywords in his campaign to be hired. When these top executives “Googled” themselves, they found a personalized message requesting a job from none other than Alec Brownstein himself.

8. Create a humorous video

Google Please hire me creative job application

Conveying to potential employers that you too have a sense of humor might be just what you need to land a job. Matthew Epstein had a dream to work at Google. In order to entice them to hire him, he acted as a mustachioed Ron Swanson-esque character who promised Google that he was an invaluable asset to their product marketing team. Although he didn’t get a job with Google, he did get an interview with them! He ended up working for an innovative startup called SigFig.

9. Have the employer apply for you

Reverse job application - 9 out-of-the-box ways to secure your dream job/internship

After tirelessly searching for jobs the traditional way, Andrew Horner took it upon himself to turn the tables on his job search. Instead of reaching out to companies to ask for interviews, he created a website that described himself and his reasoning for why companies should be applying to hire him as an employee. His effort showed the right amount of confidence and wittiness and landed him a job at a start-up.

How to increase your productivity

by ValoreBooks

A student is, by their nature, constantly busy. There’s always too little time and too much studying to do! Fortunately there are ways to get more work done in less time. Here’s how:

How to increase your productivity

1. Make task lists—and order them by priority.

Knowing exactly what needs to be done and in what order will help you focus on the most important tasks first. Plus there’s nothing quite as satisfying as crossing an item off a list.

2. Take breaks.

This seems counterproductive, but it’s really not. Psychologists have shown time and again that taking short breaks while working, even if it’s just getting up for coffee or to look out the window for a few minutes, improves concentration and productivity.

3. Reduce stress.

Spend less time worrying about what you have to do and more time actually doing it. The best way to stress less? Sleep a little more. Eat breakfast. Exercise.

4. Develop a routine.

Do you work best in hour-long chunks followed by short breaks? Do that. Do you like to sleep late but also work late? Do that. It’s all about finding your “butter zone”—the mental space where it’s easier to concentrate and work because you’re doing it on your own terms.

5. Take a nap.

Seriously. Studies show that 20 or 30-minute naps (no longer) taken in the afternoon help accommodate the daytime sleepiness that’s pre-programmed into your biological clock.

One Does not Simply Take a quick nap

To pledge, or not to pledge

by ValoreBooks

To Pledge or Not to Pledge

At many universities, the question is unavoidable. If your friends and fellow students are joining fraternities and sororities, you might reach a point where you too have to decide if you want to join in. To that end, here are the pros and cons of Greek life:


1. Social benefit

Developing a steady social life and strong friendships is an inherent part of Greek life. In addition to your own brothers or sisters, you’ll meet and converse with members of other fraternities and sororities at mixers and other social events.

2. Professional benefit

The connections made in Greek life are not necessarily limited to current members. Since you have entered a national brotherhood or sisterhood, you develop a social tie to anyone who has ever been in your fraternity or sorority throughout the U.S. This can serve as a great foot in the door when searching for a job.


1. Time commitment

From initial pledging requirements to the various events that are held by your potential frat or sorority, there is a substantial time commitment to pledging. If you love your frat/sorority, this shouldn’t be a problem, but if you hope to vastly diversify your social life, you might want to reconsider pledging.

2. Possibility of hazing

Hazing is the ritualistic initiation of new members. The rituals are sometimes unpleasant.  Although it is against school code and not every fraternity/sorority does it, many continue to haze. If you are worried about hazing but still want to join a fraternity or sorority, do some research and try to figure out if the particular brotherhood or sisterhood you are interested in participates in hazing.

To pledge, or not to pledge

Although Greek life can be an amazing social entry point to a school and possibly even a future career, it is not for everyone. There are many other ways to diversify your social life and plenty of other students who are seeking friendships outside the world of Greek life. In the end the decision should be based on your personal preferences, interests and goals.

Should prisoners get a free college education?

by ValoreBooks

Should prisoners get a free college education?

NPR recently ran a story detailing New York governor Andrew Cuomo’s recent controversial efforts. The governor proposes that New York prisoners should be offered a college education free of charge—paid for by New York taxpayers. He feels that if college courses are offered to prisoners, there is a smaller chance those prisoners will return to a life of crime. But like any political debate, both supporters and opposition of the policy have points to make:

The Economic Issue

It costs about $60,000 a year to hold a prisoner in a cell. Once released, that prisoner has about 50% chance of returning to a cell due to future crimes, costing the government more money. A college education for each prisoner would cost an additional $5,000 a year, but has been proven to reduce prisoner retention rates. Therefore, giving prisoners a college education would increase initial costs but would save taxpayers a lot of money over time.

The Moral Issue

Those who oppose the policy, generally republicans, argue that giving a free college education – what they see as an earned privilege – to those who have been convicted of breaking the law would be wrong. Politicians who oppose this issue claim that the government should protect the rights of law-abiding citizens, rather than spending time (and money) sending criminals to school. In their opinion it wouldn’t be fair to current college students, many of whom are paying for their own education out of their own pocket. Why should a prison sentence be a ticket to a free education?

What do you think? Should prisoners be educated for free? Let us know in the comments!


6 weird study tricks that actually work

by ValoreBooks

Most students think that locking themselves in a library for long uninterrupted study sessions is the key to performing well on exams. But it turns out doing so can actually hurt your grades. Who knew? Try these odd (yet proven!) study tricks instead:

1. Move around

6 weird study tricks that actually work

According to the New York Times, something as simple as switching the location in which you are studying can boost retention of material. This is a great excuse to head to a coffee shop and study there for a couple hours.

2. Study less

6 weird study tricks that actually work

The Pomodoro Technique, developed in the late 1980s by Francesco Cirillo involves working 25 minutes followed by taking a 3-5 minute break. Apparently this improves mental agility and makes you more productive. Who knew studying less could in fact help you do better on a test?


6 weird study tricks that actually work

Fish is a great study food. It was included in WebMD’s “Brain Foods that Help You Concentrate.” Rich in omega-3 fatty acids that are key for brain health, sushi can help your memory and even your long term health. A perfect excuse to go out for dinner!

4. Take a nap

6 weird study tricks that actually work

Naps are something we often feel guilty for. Turns out, a 90-minute catnap at around noon can increase your learning capacity later that day. Rest up!

5. Laugh!

6 weird study tricks that actually work

Studies show that laughter can have psychological benefits that help students learn—if the laughter is tied to what you are studying. Laughing boosts retention dramatically, so bonus points if you can make up a joke about your math homework!

6. Gummy bear incentive

6 weird study tricks that actually work

Okay, so this one isn’t backed by science, but it has to work, right?! What better way to make studying irresistible than systematically placed gummy bears?


Have any great study tricks you want to share? Let us know in the comments below.