Job Search Conversation: Jasmine Clay

Jasmine ClayJasmine Clay is currently the Assistant Director of Chadbourne Residential College, at the University of Wisconsin-Madison. Jasmine has been involved with higher education for 5.5 years full time as well as an additional 2 years as a graduate assistant. Jasmine received her master’s degree from Indiana State University.

In high school, Jasmine was on a teen television show and her interest in being a TV news anchor began. However, when she entered school at North Central College, she realized the early start time and her interest slipped…fast. As a super involved undergrad, Jasmine had a supervisor that told her she would do that for a living. She graduated with a degree in Organizational Communication and a minor in Organizational Leadership.

I was able to have a phone conversation with Jasmine about the job search. Below are some things that Jasmine had to say about the questions I asked her.

What should I do before I jump into the job search?

Jasmine says that it’s really about evaluating where you want to work and what will make you happy. Thinking about your opportunities- how they worked out? What are the expectations and needs you will have as a professional. Knowing what YOU need.

Jasmine also suggested the book Nice Girls Don’t Get the Corner Office: 101 Unconscious Mistakes Women Make That Sabotage Their Careers by Lois P. Frankel. I have it on order!

Resumes & Cover Letters are tough to get just ‘right’, what are some pieces of advice you have for grads in the search process?

Make sure you take the time to personalize them to the position you are applying for: why YOU are important for THEM, take the time to make YOU stand out.

Make it easy for them to look at your resume and take the time to look at what they want. Use the categories they use in your resume and cover letter. Talk about your experiences and transferable skills.

And as always….READ the position description and institution! (Check and double check)

Describe some of the toughest situations you’ve faced in the job search.

Jasmine talked about the fact that there are so many people who know each other in this field that you hear opinions on every institution you are looking at. Just because someone likes that institution or position because of their experiences, it doesn’t always mean that you will have the same feelings.

I’ve received word that I am up for an interview, so what should I be doing to help myself prepare for it?

Take the time to look at the information about the institution online (via their website, Social Media accounts, etc.). Do your own homework- you are interviewing them as well!

Jasmine also notes to know you, be true to yourself. Are you being honest with yourself about this job?

On campus- what’s it all about?

It’s a 24/7 interview. Everything is part of the interview process. She says to always stay true to you. Let them see the appropriate levels of your personality.

Take the time to get to know the area. Ask where do people grocery shop? Where is the mall?

Where is the best frozen yogurt? Ask them because it will help with part of your sanity outside of work. The activities the community offers (exercise, spirituality) play a part in your success as a person too. Can you find your outlet here?

When you were going through your job search, what were some resources that you found helpful?

Jasmine stressed the importance of having a network of supportive people around you during this process. She talked about the strong people in her life that helped her through this somewhat stressful time.

What advice would you give to a graduate student who is in the job search?

Jasmine had some really great piece of advice. I think we should remember this, not only in the job search but all of the time.

  • Be calm.
  • Know in the end, everything works out.
  • Stay true and honest to yourself
  • Don’t try to change to someone you are not just to get a position


I’d like to thank Jasmine for her time and help, not only to help me but to you my readers and fellow grad students.

Connect with Jasmine via Twitter


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