Advice for University Students

It’s already the end of April and for many of the university students I’ve been conversing with over the last week or so they are about to start or finish finals. If they’re lucky or worked hard at it, they’ve either already found an internship for this summer or already secured their first job post graduation. If they haven’t, time is quickly becoming their enemy.

According to the 2014 Internship & Co-op Survey by the National Association of Colleges and Employers:

  • 96.9 percent of responding employers plan to hire interns and/or co-op students in 2014.
  • Employers choose schools for recruiting interns and co-ops based on academic majors offered, perceived quality of the programs, and past recruiting experience at the school.internship-pic
  • The average hourly wage for interns at the bachelor’s degree level is $16.35.
  • The average hourly wage for interns at a master’s degree level is $22.50.
  • Employers made full-time offers to 64.8 percent of their interns
  • 79 percent of interns accepted a full-time job offer with their internship employer

For parents this may be eye-opening, for students this may be completely new news.

My professional job deals with hiring both interns and soon to graduate university students in Computer Science fields, so some of the statistics are a bit different, but none of the information is surprising.

When I was studying at my university I always held a part-time job and didn’t know many people who had serious internships, let alone paid internships and since I always had a job it was hard for me to fathom going somewhere to gain experience without a paycheck. Times have changed though and the greater majority of what I refer to as legitimate internships are not only paid, but offer experiences and learning opportunities far beyond getting someone’s coffee.

So, if you have a student in your life have a frank conversation with them and make sure that they are planning out their summer breaks in such a way that it will benefit them in the long run and encourage them to take internship shopping seriously. I promise it will benefit them so much more than just getting a job for extra cash.

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Declaring 2014 the Year of Better

2014 Better

Over the last week I’ve watched online as friends and family proclaimed what their resolutions would be for the year 2014. Several people started by declaring words or phrases that would be important to them in the new year and I liked that much better than saying I’d do this, that or the other. But what would my word / words or phrases be?

I’ve decided on these:

1. Better – I want to better myself in multiple areas including:

Be a better wife and helpmate to my husband.
Be a better employee.
Be a better friend.

2. Focused – I want to determine what’s are the most important things in my life and really put a laser like focus on them

To do this I will have to add the third and final word to my new year which is:

3. Purge – I want to rid my life of all things that are unnecessary and in the way

I’m also wanting to blog more and I suspect those posts will center around these three areas during the coming months.

Excited to get this New Year started.

Not Much Can Happen in a Week

UPDATE: I actually typed this with a headache that started when I woke at 4:30 am. Ended up having a migraine for the entire day and didn’t actually go back to work until the next day.

I’ve had many people tell me that they don’t know how I do it.

The it they refer to is that they seem to think I’m on the go a lot and that I sleep very little. Nothing could be further from the truth, although online I seemingly sleep little. The reality is that during the working week I do tend to stay up later than most and on the weekends when I can I hibernate every chance I get. Nothing says weekend more to me than being absolutely lazy and watching some Bourne flick. (Not sure if you know this, but given any Saturday or Sunday you WILL find a Bourne movie on cable. Guaranteed.)

But this week has been quite different and really not much has happened.

Last Wed., Dec. 11 my husband and I arrived at Seton Medical Center at 4:30 am. The hospital doors aren’t even open then. We had a nice security guard buzz us in. We waited for a little while until they admitting lady started taking peoples information. After they called my name we went back into my post op room, undressed, changed into a super glamorous hospital gown with ventilation, bagged up the clothes I was wearing, laid down in the hospital bed as a nurse began taking my vitals and on his second attempt finally started my pic line in my hand. Ouch! First time I had ever had a pic line and I knew immediately I wasn’t a big fan. The area still hurts a week later.

I had a few meet and greets with the anesthesia nurse, the anesthesia doctor, my doctor and then at 6:30 am the two nurses came in – one was talking to Charles telling him it was time for him to go to the waiting room, the other nurse was speaking to me and telling me she was going to put something in my pic line . . . and I woke up in a different room, in a different hospital gown totally groggy about 5 hours later. I was to learn later that the drug they gave me was pretty much the same thing as the date rape drug.

I remember nothing. Five hours of my life totally disappeared.

Which I guess is really fine. They gave me an epidural, which was really one of the things I was least looking forward to, but I don’t recall it. They said I was speaking, but couldn’t really tell me what I said.

It took some time from when I began to awake for the hospital to have my room ready. Once it was, they wheeled me down halls and to my room all the while I was still semi-awake. Too many turns for my liking though and just as we entered my room I started vomiting. Fun stuff!

Charles arrived in my room a bit after I did. I spent the next couple of hours between awake and half-asleep. Started posting on social media by 3:45 pm that day and had already started the process of getting out of bed and taking a few steps.

We left the hospital by 4:30 on Thur., Dec. 12.

A week later, my new hip is on the mend. I had a few people come to visit at the hospital, friends and family sent me gifts for my short stay, at home I’ve had meals and flowers delivered, a few friends come by to check on me, met with my at home physical therapist twice, and most importantly become a walker super-user.

My husband has been at my beck and call and I’ve been working hard at not checking work email and resting up.

Today I return to work – albeit from home. Anxious to see what I’ve missed in a week.

Christmas Comes Early

And my Santa is a wiry little man with round, tiny glasses named Dr. Jack Seaquist.

Along with the parts for the new hip, I’ve also asked that Jack include the following in his big bag of goodies:

Dr Santa

  1. When I roll out of bed in the morning, I’d like it to be effortless.
  2. When my feet hit the floor I’d like to begin walking right away instead of thinking OUCH how am I going to make this next step?
  3. I’d like to descend and ascend our stairs like a normal person instead of taking a step and then putting my second foot on same step. This method, while less painful, is tedious and I’ve got places to go.
  4. When lying down I’d like to be able to find multiple comfortable positions in which to lay and sprawl
  5. When getting in and out of a car I’d like it to be a smooth transition that doesn’t include me holding on tightly to anything in the near vicinity for fear of falling down.
  6. When walking down the halls in the office I’d like to walk in such a way that people won’t ask, “Oh, what happened?!”

Oh the joy of opening up presents that come early!

And our house promises to have no orthopedic issues this coming year. Our Isabella, Jack Russell + Chihuahua rescue came to us with two broken legs on the mend. Charles broke his collar bone in the fall. This is it. For sure!

Your Turn

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Making last minute preparations for my hospital admission on Wednesday and I’ve received a few pieces of what I expect is good advice. I suspect there’s more out there. This is what I know:

1. Don’t worry about buying a new night gown. I’ll probably stay in hospital garments. I’m bringing my short robe since I know I’ll be up and around working on how to use my new hip.

2. Drink lots of water. Meds will be messing with my digestive system, so I’ll have to stay on top of it.

3. Be aware of my pain levels. The hospital has been adamant that I shouldn’t grin and bear it.

4. The incision will be hot and I expect itchy.

What else should I be aware of?

Anything I should pack and bring with me?

What should I leave at home?

Your turn. Go!

Wrapping Things Up

It’s December and wrapping generally refers to wrapping gifts and presents . . . not in this case . . .

Out-of-Office

Just hit send on an email to alert my hiring managers that I’ll be out of the office for a wee bit very soon and ideally didn’t give my co-worker that will be covering things a heart attack.

It’s scary to put things on hold from my manager’s perspective, I’m sure. Scary for me too. A lot can happen when you’re away from the office. Things that you never anticipated breaking do. Drills that you never imagined, warrant all hands on deck. Meanwhile, I’ll be dozing away and when awake practicing leg lifts with a new body part.

While I realize time away is necessary and that I’ll be of little use, I admit I’m a bit of a workaholic. I don’t think I’m totally diagnosable with FOMA (Fear Of Missing Out), but I do like catching up on Facebook and Twitter and I’m constantly checking emails. So putting away technology for a day is unfathomable.

I suspect I’ll live through it though and until then . . . much to wrap up!

Visions of Next Wednesday

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Seven days from this evening I’ll be spending my first night ever in a hospital bed. I will have arrived before dawn, been prepped for surgery, sedated, my worn out hip removed, my me hip installed and fingers crossed that before I go to sleep have taken my first steps.

As I learned about what I will be experiencing it amazed me how quickly I’m expect to be rehabilitating and how many people will be involved with the procedure.

I’m thankful that I have an amazing family and friends support team. I’m completely comfortable with the medical staff. If there’s just one thing I could add it would be my pets. I know I’ll miss them terribly. Will the realize mom’s away getting a fantastic new build? 😜