Work Experience

For College Students, Grads & Seasoned Workers

  • Calendar of Posts

    February 2014
    M T W T F S S
    « Sep    
  • Archives

  • Categories

  • Meta

  • Pages

  • Recent Comments

I’m Moving!

Posted by Judy Anne Cavey on September 1, 2012

I’m shopping for a better place to serve you.

Once established, I’ll post the information so you won’t miss a blog. 

In the meantime, you can enjoy 343 posts here, explore the many links and check out the resource listing.

Follow me on Twitter @WorkExpBlog.

Thank you for being loyal readers!

Posted in Announcement | Tagged: , | No Comments »

Earth-Friendly Jobs Growing Fast

Posted by Judy Anne Cavey on August 20, 2012

Experts are predicting nearly 1.2 million new green jobs by 2012.

Here are five great green jobs you might not have considered from Catherine Ryan’s article, “Is a Green Job Your Dream Job?”, Self magazine:

Urban Forester

Average Income: $55K

Job Description:

Plant and care for trees in parks and along city streets. More than 3,400 communities have earmarked big budgets to promote tree care, according to Arbor Day Foundation’s Tree City USA program. Having said that, a reality check of some communities: budgets have been cut–some severely–depending on the city. So it pays to do research first, to see where the budgets are still in tack.

Background Necessary:

Biology, environmental science or urban planning with a Certified Forester credential–the industry’s gold standard endorsement. Study forest management at a university accreditd by the Society of American Foresters (SAFNet). Students and grads should amp up their resume by volunteering with the Arbor Day Foundation to plant trees.

Green Event Planner

Average Income: $77K

Job Description:

Organize eco-friendly, low impact conferences, weddings, parties and trade shows. Sustainability is popular right now, and small-footprint events are on the rise. Membership has tripled in the Green Meeting Industry Council, the organization educates eco-minded event planners.

Background Necessary:

A degree in hospitality or event planning and management. See Hospitality-1st for a list of schools, but do check them out thoroughly. Real life experience counts a great deal here. Sign-up for workshops run by the Green Meeting Industry Council at GreenMeetings.

Carbon Accountant

Average Income: $80K

Job Description:

Measure and track the production of greenhouse gases.The EPA mandated in September of 2009, that utility companies start reporting their emissions. Then in October of 2009, President Obama asked federal agencies to start detailing their greenhouse gas output and to devise ways to educate their vendors to cut emissions. Basically, what all this means is that companies lightening their carbon footprint will get more federal contracts–a big incentive.

Background Necessary:

A degree in math, science, or accounting and knowledge of emissions auditing. See training programs through Greenhouse Gas Management Institute (GHGInstitute).

Sustainability Manager

Average Income: $82K

Job Description:

By researching energy-efficient heating, for example, you can assist a company have less of a negative impact. Experts say these positions are increasing in demand.

Background Necessary:

Business experience, but that doesn’t necessarily mean an MBA. Join the International Society of Sustainability Professionals (ISSP) to begin networking.

Eco-Responsibility Marketer

Average Income: $95K

Job Description:

They promote and publicize the company’s or client’s green ways, while verifying all outgoing information for accuracy. A need exists for fact-checking to prevent misleading consumers.

Background Necessary:

Knowledge of public relations, marketing and communications is essential, along with being ecologically savvy. See Ithaca College for information on their well-respected sustainability webinars (Ithaca College). Also see GreenWashingIndex to learn how to spot “green impostors”.


If you found this blog interesting or helpful, re-tweets and sharing is appreciated!




Posted in Choices, College Grads, Hot Jobs, Internships, Planning Ahead, Veterans, Volunteering | Tagged: , , | No Comments »

Keep Your Job, Stay Young!

Posted by Judy Anne Cavey on August 18, 2012

Age discrimination is a very present and ugly side of the world of work–don’t let it happen to you.

While I’m not going to advocate dressing like you’re 20, or skateboarding to work, I will provide a few simple tips to help you feel and look younger. Outsmart those wanting to do away with mature, experienced and loyal workers by:

  1. Get a good nights sleep every night. Several researchers have found your body restores itself in a restful sleep over a period of approximately 8 hours. Your brain functions much better too when you are able to get the right amount of sleep every night. You will not only feel the difference, you’ll look different too, no more bags or dark circles under your eyes to add years.
  2. Eat healthy every day. Would you put water in your cars gas tank? Of course not, so why put junk into your body? What you eat has a direct effect on how you feel, your weight and day to day functioning. Each day, start with breakfast, fruits and whole grains. For lunch, skip the fatty and chemical-laden lunch meats–bring healthy leftovers from home–a chicken breast, salad, and skip the soda. At dinner time, think lots of veggies, protein the size of your palm, and limit alcohol (which disturbs sleep and adds pounds).
  3. Get some exercise. You can actually feel 10, 20, even 30 years younger if you take the time to move your body and pump some iron. No, I don’t want to “pump you up”, rather build strength, something lost as we age. Walk at least 20 minutes, three times per week, use hand weights, do lunges, squats, and more. If you haven’t worked out in a while, start slow, build up gradually to 5 days a week. You’ll be surprised how much energy you have–and how much better your clothes fit too!
  4. Wake up your brain. Feeling and looking younger isn’t just about your body–it’s also about your mind. It doesn’t take much: enroll in a class, start a new hobby, meet new people. Change up your regular routine: drive a new route to work, shop at a new grocery store, rearrange your furniture. And don’t pass up opportunities to learn something new at work.
  5. Look in the mirror. I don’t advocate spending a small fortune getting plastic surgery, but taking care of your skin can make a world of difference. Many products on the drug store shelves these days can offer a chance to wipe away a few years. Face creams, eye creams, hair colors, special undergarments to hold in bulges, the list goes on and on. Take advantage of products that can help you look 10 years younger.
  6. Listen to the music. If your FM dial is always set to 60′s or 70′s music, believe it or not, that’s good for you! A Harvard University study found people who were placed in an environment that reminded them of their youth (movies, music, etc.) experienced marked improvements in their memory. Not only that, it could elevate your mood. So dust off your old LP’s and take a trip back in time.
  7. Accentuate the positive. Dr. Elizabeth Lombardo, PhD. and author of A Happy You, states, “The goal is not to deny the less-than-pleasant stuff that is happening, but rather to focus on what’s going well.” Thinking more positively will supply you with more positive energy to motivate you to do interesting and youthful things.

These are seven simple things that can change your life and give you new vitality. Take the initiative to look better and feel better–and stay young!


Posted in Quick Tips, Stay Employed, Workers 50 and Over | Tagged: , , , | No Comments »

Did They Really Say That?

Posted by Judy Anne Cavey on August 15, 2012

Keep Your Sense of Humor!

Feel like pouring some audacity into your Wednesday morning coffee via Max Messmer’s “Resumania”?

It’s hard to believe, at least it is for me, that these people actually thought they’d get a job based on what was in their cover letters:

“Argh. I need a darn job already!” -And so do nearly 15 million Americans!

“Every time I get a tip about a company that’s hiring, I find out they just filled the position, they restructured or it’s a frozen yogurt shop that wants to see a resume. I’m not wasting my inkjet cartridge on that!” -It’s safe to assume an employer won’t waste their time on this person either.

“All the employers I have had interviews with are nothing but jerks.” -Perhaps the problem isn’t with the employers?

Sadly, these examples show how frustrated job seekers are right now. But take a tip from these examples; don’t vent your job hunt frustrations on your resume!

*Comments in italics are mine.



Posted in Keep Your Sense of Humor | Tagged: , | No Comments »

Redefine Success: Follow Your Heart!

Posted by Judy Anne Cavey on August 13, 2012


“Follow your heart”, advice many of you have gotten at one time or another–usually not regarding a major or career.

Often we become “practical”, choosing a safer route, perhaps one suggested to us by parents, guidance counselor or friends. Do you yearn to become a writer? Great, but how do you intend to pay the bills after majoring in Journalism? A promising musician? Why not? But can you support yourself and one day, possibly a family? You want to become an artist, however, your parents want a doctor in the house. Sound familiar?

You Must Change Your Life

I recently read an article by writer Ali Liebegott, Live Your Dream Life, (Self Magazine), which gave her personal account of stacking cat food in a store to support her love of writing. She tells the reader how she awoke, two years ago, with a line by poet Rainer Maria Rilke in her head: “You must change your life”. And so she did, quitting a prestigious college teaching job, and opting for a house sitting stint that lasted three months. There, she spent her time writing.

Work, in her family’s eyes, was a real job, one that a person went to and put in an honest days labor. She wanted to write, but that didn’t qualify as a job with the family. It wasn’t until she was shopping at a food co-op, and mentioned to a friend who worked there, that her teaching career was bogging her down in stress, that a change began. Her friend suggested she apply for a job at the co-op where many employees were writers and artists, wanting work, but also wanting time to hone their craft. Not only did she get the job, she received a 20 percent grocery discount, health insurance, 35 percent off vitamins and matching 401(k) contributions–all this, and time to write!

Your Own Definition of Success

Ms. Liebegott recalls while working, a former colleague showed up at the co-op, stating that she envied her new simpler existence. Yet, even with that, she had her own twinge of envy. She lamented, in the working world, a professor is perceived as “successful”–not a grocery clerk that stacks cat food cans. However, that’s all in the eye of the beholder, isn’t it? Each of us needs to define success for ourselves.

The doubts Ms. Liebegott had about her career change eventually faded, especially after having 30 hours a week to write. She ends her article with this, “That may not be visible to the outside world [extra time to write] , but it means the world to me.” The author has published two critically successful books and is a freelance writer. Not bad for someone who stacks cat food cans at a co-op!

Make it Happen!

What dream do you have? Are you following your heart in your choice of major and career? Perhaps it’s time to redefine what success means to you in order to get a clearer picture of what you really want for your future.


If you found this blog helpful or interesting, re-tweeting and sharing is always appreciated!


Posted in Choices, Decisions, Follow Your Dreams, Goals | Tagged: , , | No Comments »

College Fund for 50+ Workers

Posted by Judy Anne Cavey on August 11, 2012

Life-long learning has new meaning for older workers…

If you have children, you’ve probably socked away money for their higher education in a 529 college savings plan, but now, an expert says you should start one for yourself.

Ted C. Fishman, author of Shock of Gray, drives home the idea in his interview with Money magazine, that more workers in their 50′s and 60′s are forced to take early retirement and must continually update skills. He believes older workers must maintain their value in the workforce by returning to school periodically, and that takes planning, especially if your employer won’t foot the bill.

Mr. Fishman states, “…you should open a 529 for yourself–separate from what you might already have for your kids’ education. The money in a 529 grows tax-free if you spend it on qualified expenses, like tuition at just about any post-secondary institution. And if you don’t end up needing the savings, you can always change the beneficiary on a 529 account to a child or grandchild one day.”

Adding my two cents, I’ll say when going back to school, do research what to take, and where to take it, to provide more bang for your buck. And even if your employer does not pay for tuition, be sure to let them know you are in the process of updating your skill-sets. This shows your boss you’re willing to go the extra mile, and you become more marketable, should you find yourself unemployed.



Posted in Quick Tips, Stay Employed, Survival Tips, Workers 50 and Over | Tagged: , , | No Comments »

More from the Trenches

Posted by Judy Anne Cavey on August 8, 2012

Keep Your Sense of Humor!


The following are from Max Messmers “Resumania”…these are actual cover letters and resumes. While it’s great to express your individuality and show off your abilities, these folks went too far:

Skills: “I know how to tackle my way to the top.” -He’s been watching too much Monday night football.

Resume: “I will punch out the moon for you.” -What did the moon ever do to him?

Cover Letter: “I’m like Socrates on an IV line of Red Bull, and upon hiring me, expect nothing less than total victory!!” -Here’s a perfect example why you shouldn’t drink too many energy drinks and then write a cover letter!

*Comments in italics mine



Posted in Quick Tips | Tagged: , , | No Comments »

Limit Stress at Work

Posted by Judy Anne Cavey on August 6, 2012

Women, as well as men, fall victim to stress at the office…

Data from the Women’s Health Study, which was sponsored by the National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute, found women who reported high job strain–doing demanding work with little or no decision making authority or the use of creativity and skills–increased their risk of cardiovascular disease by 40%. They also had an 88% increase in heart attacks.

How should women (and men) manage stress, since there’s no escaping it?

Three Easy Steps

Health magazine advocated these changes which could help to reduce the harmful effects of stress:

1.) Get a Head Start! Plan on arriving at the office 10-15 minutes earlier. This allows you to assess your schedule for the day, catch up on e-mails, and prepare yourself for what’s ahead without interruptions.

2.) Get a “Work Spouse”! There’s always someone we connect with at the office who turns into an ally we can usually count on–let that person be your sounding board and be theirs. While it’s important to vent about politics in the workplace, be sure you do it in the proper place, you wouldn’t want others to overhear your conversation.

3.) No Work at the Table! While you can’t always leave work at the office, you can control when you don’t give those at home your undivided attention. Be sure to establish reasonable guidelines for yourself, not cheating those you love out of their time with you. Never have your cell or computer at the dinner table, let that be a special time to connect without interruption.




Posted in Quick Tips, Stress, Survival Tips | Tagged: , , | No Comments »

Resume and Cover Letter Hell

Posted by Judy Anne Cavey on August 4, 2012

Keep Your Sense of Humor

Proofreading is everything when constructing a resume and cover letter. It’s easy to miss something another set of eyes might catch. See the mistakes below from Max Messmers “Resumania”. These mistakes probably cost the poor people who wrote them a job. Don’t be one of them!

Education: “Completed some coarse work toward my bachelor’s degree.” -It must have been rough!

Job Duties: “I started an assignment assassinating a senior accountant.” -So let me get this straight, in your last position you were an assassin?

Cover Letter: “I look forward to hearing from you. I am contractable 24/7.” -We would like to know, when do you sleep?

Work History: “Most recently worked on a maturity assignment.” -Have you grown up since?

Other Skills: “Able to compete a Rubik’s Cube in less than two minutes.” -We’re puzzled as to why you’d mention this on a resume.

*Comments in italics mine


Posted in Keep Your Sense of Humor | Tagged: , , | No Comments »

Don’t Make These Mistakes!

Posted by Judy Anne Cavey on August 1, 2012

How many of these mistakes have you made on your resume?


As you know, the job market is tight, that’s why your resume must be perfect. Take a look at the suggestions below and check your resume for any of these errors:

  1. No Duties-Don’t write about your duties. Instead, show how your skills have helped you accomplish something measurable. Think of the person reading your resume–what would impress them about what you’ve done?
  2. Current Only-Stick to recent accomplishments and responsibilities. The most recent position should have the most bullet points, past jobs very few.
  3. The Facts-Avoid self-ascribed attributes. Instead, use specific examples of those attributes by substantiating them.
  4. Their Needs-Be aware of what they really want. Address those needs in the employers order of importance in your cover letter.
  5. Proof Read-It’s been estimated that 20% of resumes have typos. Always proof several times and then go back one last time before handing it over to someone else to proof it. You can take your resume and cover letter to a One Stop to have them look it over for you.

There are many suggestions regarding resumes and how to write them, but keep in mind you’ll want to get an employers attention in the end. This can be done by taking the time to understand what’s imperative in this time of 9.1% unemployment. Gone are the resumes that once listed references, hobbies and marital status. Employers don’t have much time to go through a stack of resumes therefore, yours must stand out from the rest.

See my “Resources” section for more suggestions to help you compose the best resume possible!


If you found this blog interesting or helpful, re-tweets and sharing is appreciated!


Posted in Quick Tips, Resumes and Cover Letters | Tagged: , | No Comments »