Communications Employer Panel: Getting Your Foot in the Door

Photo by: Holy Family University Marketing and Communications

By Amber Schiffner

On Thursday, September 21, 2017, Communications students had the opportunity to take part in the Communications Employer Panel, hosted by the Careers Center. In the employer panel, students were able to listen and hear what future employers in their field look for when seeking possible candidates to hire into their companies. Among the panel was Heather Dotchel, Executive Director of Marketing and Communications at Holy Family University,  and Jenna Sherlock, President of Jenna Communications, a Public Relations firm located in Philadelphia .

Throughout the panel, both Dotchel and Sherlock responded to questions, provided knowledge on several in-depth details regarding how their fields work, as well as the types of skills required by people trying to break into the Communications field.  One common point both panelists emphasized was the monumental importance of networking.

Dotchel and Sherlock vouched for the need to know people, stating  that an effective way to get your name out is to introduce yourself and constantly follow up on applications and questions. A key piece of advice that Sherlock shared  from personal experience is even if you are turned down for a job or internship, always make sure you ask if there is anyone else you can speak to. Persistence is a crucial  strategy in the job searching process that can mean the difference between landing the position or sending a resume out to a different company.

“Networking is an important part of any job search and can provide a student advantage when trying to enter the communications workforce,” Dotchel said. “There is no easy way to build a network; it involves getting over the discomfort putting yourself and your work out there to people that you don’t know. Talk to family members and friends to see if they know anyone in industry and ask for an introduction.”