My favorite speech is Steve Jobs’ “Stay Hungry, Stay Foolish” delivered at Stanford University’s graduation ceremony in 2005. It’s widely known and admired.
He discussed three points, and one of them left a deep impression on me, called “connecting the dots.”
Things we do by chance can, after several years, form a line and have a significant impact. I believe this principle applies perfectly to education and career pursuits.
Study Abroad Opens the Counter Attack Life
At that time, the choice of going abroad was actually a spare tire for me.
My undergraduate studies are financial insurance, graduate students want to test finance. At that time, the graduate school I wanted to test, the acceptance rate of fresh graduates was 10 to 1. What do you mean? That is to say, with my meager brain power, there is a great probability that it will take two or three years of full-time review to be admitted.
Just kidding! Scare who? Somehow we also admitted to the college entrance examination Renmin University of China, such a challenge I certainly… I feel totally worthless! Good youth, spend two or three years in the study room to brush topic endorsement?
Although I was low in the workplace at that time, I fortunately had a bottom line.
But what’s the alternative if I don’t take the postgraduate entrance exam?
Looking ahead, there are only two paths: finding a job or studying abroad. However, regardless of which path I choose, I feel like I’ve already lost at the starting line. My classmates who are focused on graduating and working have already accumulated numerous impressive internships, their shining resumes blinding me completely. As for those classmates who aspire to study abroad, they maintain outstanding GPAs that guarantee them admission to prestigious universities, along with impressive internships at multinational companies and noteworthy research papers. I’m too embarrassed to even greet them.
After much thought, I recalled my mother’s words: “How can you survive without a master’s degree?!”… (omitting ten thousand words of detailed discussion). Thus, in the summer following my third year, I hastily withdrew from the Chen Wendeng Math Crash Course and immediately registered for the GMAT, clutching my money tightly. Everything started in such a rushed and chaotic manner.
I regret not planning earlier, not figuring things out sooner, and wasting the first three years of university without purpose. As the saying goes, “Lack of foresight leads to immediate worries,” and “Born in suffering, die in ease,” it perfectly describes my situation.
I swear that if I study abroad for a master’s degree, I won’t continue living like this.
The GMAT made me feel good about studying abroad
Soon after I started preparing for the GMAT, I began to realize that I might have picked the right path by mistake.
Compared with the Postgraduate Entrance Examination, the GMAT is the most scientifically designed test I have encountered in my long career as a student.
Because the GMAT is not designed to screen people, but what skills are needed to test what skills.
The GMAT can be understood as the entrance exam for Western business schools, but they don’t take linear algebra, which is something that Mathias would never use in a real business life. What skills are most needed to run a real business?Ability to reason logically, express clearly, be sensitive to numbers, and read quickly (without words).
What a coincidence, people GMAT test this.
So when I was preparing for the exam, I really felt I had learned something. Not knowledge, but skills.
Reading is not the central idea of guessing (with standard answers), but the ability to exercise speed reading and quickly understand logical carelessness. This ability is particularly helpful when reading English news later.
Logic is not a brain teaser. It trains you to think carefully and make reasonable inferences based on information. The ability to invest is important. If the logic of an investment idea is flawed, you have to be able to identify where to ask questions and where to gather data to support or refute it.
After all, business emails are not love letters. What matters is clear structure, clear ideas and concise sentences.
So you prepare for an exam, walk out of the examination room at that moment, there is no sense of nothingness that all the knowledge of a button is flushed down the toilet, and feel that your skills get equipment upgrade is further away from eating chicken, this experience is very novel.
My interest in studying abroad has suddenly increased.
Studying abroad requires you to step out of your comfort zone
School choice, paperwork, online applications, all kinds of toss. Applying to several American schools is not exciting. Impressed by a photo of a summer lake in Chicago on a school website and a modest scholarship, I signed my name with the stroke of a pen and handed over the next 10 years to a city I knew nothing about except the Bulls.
When I came to the United States, I was traveling, not studying.
When we got off the plane, we were picked up by two Chinese brothers who had lived in the United States for many years. We got in their car and found that the song in the car was SHE. Brother Lu answered a phone call and directly resented the Beijing dialect. Said to take us to dinner, and then familiar with the road to Chinatown. I remember that I was a little confused at that time, which was a little far from the image of the overseas Chinese who I had imagined as completely westernized. I even have the illusion that I’m still in China.
After a long time, I realized that this is normal. The United States is such a diverse country, everyone can have their own circle, do not need to cater to the so-called “mainstream,” even English is not necessary. In Chicago’s Chinatown, the lingua franca is Cantonese. As long as you can speak Cantonese, even if you can’t speak English, you can still live leisurely in Chinatown.
Why do you want to share this feeling?
Because I want to pour cold water on the children’s shoes who think that “English is naturally good when they come to the United States, and they will naturally blend in after a long time.”Especially when you go to a school where Wuyang and Wuyang are all Chinese faces.If you don’t choose to step out of your comfort zone, your life will be no different than in China.In addition to listening to English in class, you can buy Korean dramas online like you do in China, and you can also find roommates to kill hot pot werewolves when you are tired of playing.
You choose America because it’s inclusive and diverse. But if you count on this “inclusive and diverse” environment to push you along, it will only respect your choice to “stand still.”
The requested internship
Remember my failed college project? I want to get back in the graduate school. With graduation two years away, I set my sights firmly on finding a summer internship.
Looking for an internship requires a strong resume. My resume at the time was as sparse as a middle-aged bald head, with only a few lines of text, and it was all about my experience in China, and it was really hot to take it to find an internship. I wanted to have a job in America on my CV, even if it was just a librarian or something. At the very least, I wanted to have Chicago at the top of my CV.
I soon found my first school job. This opportunity is not my online application, I asked for it.
When I heard that a finance professor was working on a research project, I saw the opportunity eagerly: He couldn’t say no to the free labor that came to him to do his research. However, I don’t know this professor, and I didn’t take his class that semester. What should I do? Sly I asked about his classroom, until the end of his class, squatting at the door of the classroom blocking him, he rushed up after class.
Now that I think about it, I actually have a talent for loan sharks.
I simply ended up with myself, and then I told him how much I wanted to work for him free of charge to participate in his research project. It is estimated that he has not seen a few of these figures, moved by my beauty and sincerity, let me go to his office to talk. Sure enough! He was short of people, so I became his research assistant.
Little did I know at the time that this research assistant job I found became the first DOT in America.
You might say, it’s not a big company, and you’re embarrassed to put it on the table and talk about it if you don’t even pay for it.
First of all, to pay the resume is Research Assistant of Professor XXX, and really really involved, you don’t say who knows which is official which is obligatory?
Second, no matter how many people have a starting point, how many people who can’t afford to fight for their father can make a lot of money on their first job? When you have many choices, you are qualified to choose; when you have nothing, it is the best strategy to find a chance to do it in a down-to-earth manner.
Once, I overheard the news that one of my classmates had found an internship in Chicago and called to ask for advice. He told me that he was not born to vote, but purposefully selected a dozen companies that he was most interested in. Found a way to connect with the head of the company’s actuarial department (he studied actuarial), sent emails one by one, and got 4-5 interviews, one of which gave an offer for a summer internship.
Sigh? Can there be such an operation? Strangers are so effective! Then so can I!
But where to find the contact information of the company contacts?
At this time, the CFA Society of Chicago, which I had forgotten, suddenly came to me. In addition to conducting industry events, the organization provides all members with a membership contact list, including name, company, and email address. I started researching the list, picking out people who worked for companies I was interested in, as well as members who appeared to have Chinese names, like three or four hundred people, and started a mass email campaign that was inhuman.
But how did it work that year? As you can imagine, 95% of people… There was absolutely no response.
I really received a few phone interviews without warning, answered the phone with a blank brain, and when I introduced myself, I couldn’t even remember anything on my resume (so then I started carrying my resume in my pocket all the year round, and my brain was blank to scan at least two eyes). I asked each other twice that I didn’t hear me clearly, and I was embarrassed to ask again.Generally speaking, from beginning to end, hang up the phone to know that the fate of this life is over.
So, you ask how to improve the interview? I said which book or website you go to, it doesn’t solve the problem. It is the most effective way to constantly face and constantly fail.Because you have really lost, lost someone, you will start to think about how to improve with a gas.
In order to land a desirable internship
Me! Spell! It!
More than a month after the mass email, my turn finally came.
I received a letter, the company is a very large financial company in Chicago, the department is unknown, the job content is unknown, the manager said that his department is considering hiring an intern, do XX products, and asked me if I am interested.
I replied to my ass, and I didn’t follow it for a few days. But after those failed phone interviews, this time I learned to be good, knowing that HR calls could come at any time, so I began to prepare for it. This time, there are more than just resumes in your pocket, as well as a variety of common interview questions and your own written answers. In those days, I did nothing else, I kept practicing in the mirror, and I felt that when I said something awkward, I checked the Internet to see if there was a better way to say it, to see if there was a similar model article to learn from, and I also looked for Career Services’s teacher to do Mock Interview.
A week later, I got a call from HR. The hand is still shaking, but the answer is much more reliable, and for the first time after hanging up the phone, there may be a sense of drama. The next day, I received an on-site interview invitation from HR, a week later.
It was already April, and I had signed up for the CFA Level 2 exam in June, and I hadn’t read much, so I missed the interview. Succeed or perish.
What to do? Fight!
This week, I seem to have all the classes are skipped, shut myself in a study room, the behavior question all listed out on the internet, one by one.
I have prepared about 10 of their own experience, there is teamwork, communication, leadership experience, innovative thinking, the biggest advantages, the biggest shortcomings, the biggest achievements, the biggest failure, career planning, hobbies. Write the answers down and start talking to the wall over and over again.
You’ve probably been taught that you shouldn’t memorize answers in interviews. But I couldn’t, because my accumulation at that time didn’t guarantee that my words would be accurate enough to blurt out, and my stories would be concise enough to tell. At first I thought it was my language, but now I think the language has something to do with it, but not the most important thing, the most important thing is actually logic.
In other words, ask you an interview question out of the blue, even if asked to speak in Chinese, you may be too long-winded to tell people dizzy.Therefore, the significance of the preparation is to sort out the logic of the story, you can use a framework called STAR (Situation, Task, Action, Result), to simplify in advance, remember the most important key words, and control each answer within 2 minutes.
The answer is organized to say repeatedly, when it comes to proficiency. Because the answer is written by themselves, so it should be very natural, not rigid. If it’s a mouthful, make sure to change it to make yourself comfortable.
You may be confused. If every question needs to be written down in order to answer it well, isn’t it a mistake to ask unprepared questions? And you don’t have to write down any questions for the rest of your life, do you?
It may take you an hour or two to prepare for each experience at first. It’s hard work and can’t be lacking.But when you have prepared more than 10 experiences, you will find that you are more comfortable, and some problems are not prepared, but you can apply the experience that has been prepared. Later, you can just think of a framework, you can answer the question more clearly. This is something I’ve learned over the years while preparing for interviews.
The most important aspect of studying abroad is to unleash a powerful version of oneself
A week later, I went to my first on-site interview in America.
You can’t say that you are confident, but you have 10 pages of answers to various questions that you have practiced repeatedly in your pocket. At least your heart is more practical, so you are relatively relaxed and your state is more natural.The answer to my email turned out to be the hiring boss, who was the last interviewer. He told me that he appreciated that I emailed him for an internship, and that the internship didn’t exist until I emailed him. He just had an idea to hire an intern, but before he could implement it, it was my email that made him decide to finalize the position.
I thought I had saved the galaxy in a previous life.
A week later, in the spring of 2008, amid the financial crisis, I got an offer for this summer internship.
At that time, I went to the United States for a full eight, and I also worked hard to sow eight dots. Until that day, out of all the dots I sowed, there was finally a line.
You might say I was lucky. I did a few things and it turned out.But what I didn’t tell you was that I planted a lot of other dots and I did a bunch of other thingsI volunteered; I am looking for American college students who want to learn Chinese to do study buddy practice English;
I went to talk to alumni; I went to almost every workshop at Career Services. I even went to college job fairs, Latino job fairs, accounting job fairs. Looking back, the dots were not connected.But you have to believe that the more you do, the more dots you will have, and the more likely you will be to connect.
So,you ask me if I want to study abroad? I still think I should go abroad. Not only to see a wider world, but more importantly, to inspire a stronger self.
Without this environment where parents are alone and only dream, they will not achieve a stronger self, and will not achieve a youth that strives for their dreams.
Many people may have doubts, the motherland is now developing so fast, opportunities emerge in endlessly, the treatment of returnees is getting lower and lower, the investment is really worth it? I recognize these phenomena,But I don’t think it’s worth just taking one offer to evaluate whether studying abroad is worth it.Imagine that even if I did not find a job, all the abilities I have accumulated through my life will benefit me for life. These are in front of you can not see, and will be in the future work life accumulated, slowly release.
Studying abroad is just a starting point, and the rewards come in a variety of ways. There is still a long way to go, but I believe that it is never wrong to continue to invest in yourself, and now this age should be to constantly clear the property to improve themselves. Road will be more and more broad ~ mentality will be better and better!