Transforming Resumes and Building Networks: Promoting Asia Pacific Career Development

Landing that coveted job or internship in today’s competitive job market requires an understanding of how recruiters look at resumes and LinkedIn profiles. As part of our ongoing efforts to promote students’ careers in fields related to the Asia Pacific, the USF Center for Asia Pacific Studies hosted a spring semester career development workshop series featuring Emily Taylor, Founder of NextStep Careers to help students learn how to best market themselves, transform their resumes, and build their networks. 

With our original plans upended due to the shelter in place order, we quickly moved to reconfigure the originally planned one-day in-person workshop to an interactive online workshop series focused on resume writing and networking via LinkedIn. Students in interdisciplinary degrees with unique skillsets combining foreign language fluency, knowledge of societies and cultures, and economics, such as graduate students in MA programs in Asia Pacific Studies and International Studies and undergraduates in Asian Studies were particularly encouraged to participate. These students were joined by other students from the College of Arts and Sciences.

In the resume workshops (April 6th and 10th), students learned how to format their resumes to make it easy for recruiters to discover their unique skillsets and connections. Sharing their resumes with Taylor, participants received realtime feedback allowing them to immediately see their resumes transformed to now streamline their experience, highlight their strengths, and quantify their achievements.  

One of the advantages of moving to a workshop series was that students were able to integrate feedback received at the resume workshop before meeting 1:1 with Taylor to fine-tune their resumes. According to Jennifer Z, “It was a great workshop. Emily shared many practical and helpful tips to help with the job search and application process. She really helped me enhance my skills on my resume and to make it look professional and concise. I feel more confident with myself as well.” While meeting with Taylor, students were able to obtain individualized suggestions for making their resumes more resulted-oriented and quantifying the impact of their previous work experiences.

In the LinkedIn and Networking workshops (April 17th and 20th), students learned how to optimize their profiles to attract recruiters and to expand their networks. Taylor encouraged students to join their alumni group to make connections with fellow USF alums working in their dream jobs, to learn from their experiences, and attract recruiters.  For Neha C, “The LinkedIn & Networking workshop was a novel exercise which gave me the opportunity to learn the skills necessary to promote myself best on the platform. Emily provided us with quick and essential pointers to not only gain the attention of recruiters but also network with the right people in our respective target industries.”

The center looks forward to seeing the results of the workshop series and hopes to see more students in Asia Pacific Studies entering the workforce with the ability to showcase their unique skillsets and accomplishments.

Students looking to learn more about maximizing their potential and landing their dream job are encouraged to visit the USF Career Center. For more information, visit: