Each project worth 14% of your course grade
- August 4: Draft of Project 4 (informal proposal) due for peer review
- August 5: Due date for Project 4 (informal proposal)
- August 14: Drafts of Project 6 (job application materials) due for peer review
- August 15: Due date for Project 6 (job application materials, the final exam)
As Project 6 is the final exam, you need to submit it on the day it is due. There is no grace period for Project 6.
The Name of the Projects
For simplicity’s sake, I will refer to your work for these projects as “job application materials”; however, you can actually focus on an internship application, a scholarship application, or a similar kind of position. Furthermore, what you write doesn’t actually have to be an application for anything. You might work on a professional web portfolio or a LinkedIn profile, for instance. The task can be defined broadly, as you will see as you read on. So while I will call it “job application materials,” remember that it can be many other things.
The Project Assignment
You may need a job or a scholarship or an internship. You may need to begin building a personal presence online. You may want to establish yourself professionally so you can network with future colleagues. No one assignment that I could design will ever fit what each one of you needs, so for this assignment, you will choose what kind of job application materials are relevant for your future. You will choose the task, do the necessary research, establish the criteria for excellence, and reflect on how well you do. This assignment is meant to be personally meaningful and useful. If it’s not, you have no one to blame but yourself.
The assignment has two parts:
- Project 4 is your informal proposal. Research the job application expectations for your field using the information in chapter 10 of Markel, your experience from internships and other jobs in your field, and the details from the Virginia Tech Career Planning Guide (available online or in print from Career Services on the Blacksburg Campus). Write an informal proposal with background on what you have found out and an explanation of what you will create for Project 6, with levels for C, B, and A work.
- Project 6 (your final exam) is your job application materials. You will create whatever job application materials you proposed in Project 4, with my approval. The specifics for this project will be up to you.
Step 1: Conduct your research
You probably know a bit about what you will need to gather for a job application after you graduate. For Project 4, you will build on that knowledge by doing a bit of research on what someone in your field needs to develop. Research the job application expectations for your field using the information in the textbook, your experience from internships and other jobs in your field, and the details from the Virginia Tech Career Planning Guide (available online or in print from Career Services on the Blacksburg Campus).
You can also rely on discussions with colleagues where you have worked, advice from faculty in your major, and information from other students and alumni. Review position listings for your field as well in order to see the kinds of material companies ask for. Look at the kinds of materials that are specifically requested as well as the kinds of resources companies often consult.
Step 2: Choose a focus
Based on your research, you should choose a broad focus for your job application materials. Some (not all) possible options are the following:
- Find a job posting you want to apply for and write the materials it requires.
- Find a internship posting you want to apply for and write the materials it requires.
- Find a scholarship you want to apply for and write the materials it requires.
- Create a personal website that provides a portfolio of your work and basic biography or resume.
- Clean up your online presence online and establish profiles in places that will help you network or get a job (like Academia.edu, LinkedIn or GitHub).
I encourage you to choose whatever project is most helpful to you. Take advantage of this assignment to get something done you’ve been putting off or to get ahead on your job search for the fall.
Step 3: Propose your job application materials (Project 4)
Following the information in chapter 11 of Markel, write an informal proposal, in memo format addressed to me, that explains what you discovered in your research and what you propose to compose for Project 6. Because this will be an informal, internal proposal, you will not need to include all the components listed in the textbook.
Please include the following sections and information in your proposal:
- summary (p. 282–283)
- introduction, which explains the findings of your research and your needs (p. 283)
- proposed tasks, that is what you propose to create for Project 6 (p. 283–286)
- task schedule (p. 287–289)
- evaluation techniques (p. 289), which outlines three levels of work:
- Average Work ( a C project)
- Above-Average Work (a B project)
- Excellent Work (an A project)
You will submit this project in Scholar on August 5 with a short reflection memo. I will provide more details in the post for August 5.
Step 4: Create your job application materials (Project 6)
Complete your project, as you have proposed it. Create whatever job application materials you have proposed, working to meet whatever grade goals you have set for yourself.
Step 5: Complete the reflection memo and submit Project 6
In addition to the job application materials that you propose to write, you will write a short (usually no more than one single-spaced page) informal memo that explains the choices you made for Project 6. When you are finished with the project, you will write your reflection memo in the Assignment tool on Scholar and give me the Google Share link(s) to your documents. I will provide more details in the post for August 14.