All posts by Wanda Kimsey

Elevator Pitch! What? How?

elevator pitch introduction

What is an elevator pitch and when would you use it? If you were to meet the CEO of your dream company in an elevator, would you know how to talk about yourself? Could you tell your story in one or two sentences? An elevator pitch is a concise, compelling 30-60 second statement of your skills, experience, and career goals. Think of your pitch as a short recap of who you are and what you do. Your objective is to spark interest by briefly describing your story so the listener will say, “Tell me more!”

Important Components of an Effective Elevator Pitch:

1. Identify Your Audience:

Tailor your speech/pitch to the individual you are talking with. Let your target audience know exactly what you are interested in and what you are seeking. Consider having more than one elevator pitch so you will be ready to give your “30-60 second speech” no matter your audience.

2. Remember Your Time is Limited:

Recognize the best way to showcase your skills, strengths, and talents. Be strategic in how you introduce yourself. Give a short recap of who you are, what you do, why you do it, and what you hope to accomplish. Mention your goals, let your audience know your exact topic of interest, and highlight why you are a valuable asset.

3. Be Persuasive:

Although your elevator pitch needs to be brief, make sure you are able to share information about yourself. Focus on your strengths emphasizing what you can provide to the employer or organization. This will entice the listener to want to continue a conversation with you and learn more about you.

4. Add Your Personal Twist, and be Creative:

Pace yourself when you speak. Avoid rambling while keeping an appropriate level of enthusiasm. Let your personality show and remember to smile!

5. Follow-Up / Business Card: 

Before your conversation has ended, exchange business cards. This is a great way for you to follow-up with them after your “brief introductory” meeting. If you do not have a business card, share your contact information with them via smart phone/email. Whatever your goal is, if you are interested in a job with their organization or becoming a member of their club, remember to follow-up!

Did you know that interview preparation includes a great elevator pitch?  One of the first questions asked during an interview is, “Tell me about yourself.” Think of your elevator pitch as a condensed version of your answer to that question.

In addition to a job interview, you can you use your elevator pitch at the following:

  • Community or Transfer Fairs
  • Job and Career Fairs
  • LinkedIn summary
  • Networking events and mixers
  • Professional association programs
  • In a classroom and at college club meetings
  • Workshops

You do not get a second chance to make a great first impression, so make your first impression memorable! To learn more, attend our Elevator Pitch / Interview Preparation Workshop on Tuesday, July 23, 12:30pm to 2pm, second floor of the Library, room 209, Clearwater Campus.  For more information, contact Wanda Kimsey at

Follow us on Instagram or Twitter at #careerspc,  #spcintern,  #workforcespc.

Interview Anxiety – Interview Preparation

Photo of a man and woman shaking hands

Interview anxiety is a real thing. Let’s be honest, no one likes doing interviews. Why is that? Perhaps if we felt better prepared, we would not have this innate fear of interviews. Instead, we would confidently take part in an interview. Clearwater Career Services department will be hosting an Interview Preparation Workshop on:

Thursday, April 4th at 12:30 pm in the Library, 2nd floor, Room 209

What is an interview?

An interview is what separates you from other applicants. It is your chance to prove you are the right person for the job and gives you a chance to shine. Whether you are a fan of interviews or not, it is imperative you do everything possible to ensure you are prepared. You will never have a second chance to make a good first impression.

First Impression

You are being evaluated even before the first question is asked. The first impression begins the moment you walk into the building. It begins with the first person make contact with through the handshake of the interviewer. Some helpful ways to do this are:

  • Initiate handshakes
  • Maintain eye contact
  • Warm smiles
  • A confident introduction of self
  • Good posture
  • Acknowledge each person along your journey: the parking attendant, the receptionist, those in the elevator, and of course the interviewer(s)

By implementing these positive gestures, these help build your confidence in interviews and everyday life. The goal of the interview is to leave knowing the interviewer(s) are confident in your abilities to perform the job successfully. Being able to communicate your talents, skills, and experiences can help the interviewer(s) know why you are the right fit. Just like you want to begin the interview on a strong note, you want to end it the same way.

Company Research

However, it is not enough to be able to talk about yourself. You should also do research on the company. Utilizing company websites, LinkedIn, Glassdoor and others can give you insight into the company culture. Look for their mission statement and how they work within their community. At the end of the interview, you will be asked if you have any questions. Use the research you did ahead of time to compose your questions. A good rule of thumb is to have three questions on hand (in the event one or two are answered during the interview). By having your questions ready, you show your interest and more importantly, you are prepared. A few good questions are:

  • What do YOU like about working here?
  • What types of training opportunities does this department provide?
  • What can you tell me about your new products or growth plans?

It is not uncommon to worry about how to answer interview questions. Optimal Resume is a great resource for SPC students to practice answering interview questions. Some of the interview examples included are initial face-to-face, hiring manager, and panel interviews. Each type of interview has at least 10 practice questions to help you be more prepared. You can learn more about it at: (click on student login, then click on the My Courses tab, scroll down and on the far right-hand side you will see the link to Optimal Résumé).

For more information about the Clearwater Campus workshop, contact Wanda Kimsey, Career Specialist. A special thank you to Adam Kayne, Clearwater Campus student worker, for creating this blog article.

Follow us on Instagram or Twitter at #careerspc#spcintern,,  #workforcespc.

Degree Programs Open House

degree programs SPC Transfer Fair

Which degree programs are for you? Is your interest in Associates in Science or Bachelor’s Programs at St. Petersburg College?

Clearwater Career Services is hosting an Open House Wednesday, March 20 from 11:30 am – 1:30 pm. We are focused on SPC degree programs. This event will be held in the Library Building, 1st Floor, Community Room.  Take advantage of this great opportunity to meet one-on-one with professionals.

Associate in Science Degree Programs

  • Biomedical Engineering Technology
  • Biotechnology Laboratory Technology
  • Building Design and Construction Management
  • Business Administration
  • Computer Programming and Analysis
  • Early Childhood Education
  • Engineering Technology
  • Environmental Science Technology
  • Paralegal Studies

Have you been wanting to get your bachelor’s degree, but not sure where to start? Learn more about some of the great bachelor programs offered at Clearwater Campus.

Bachelor’s Degree Programs

  • Biology (B.S.)
  • Business Administration (B.S.)
  • Education (B.S.)
  • Paralegal Studies (B.A.S.)
  • Public Policy and Administration (B.S.)
  • Technology Development and Management (B.A.S.)

Consider these facts when you are pursuing different SPC degree programs:

  • Computer Programming and Analysis programs provide hands-on training on specific languages you will use as a programmer with flexible scheduling and online options.  All programs can be applied to our Technology Development and Management B.A.S. degree.
  • Our bachelor’s degree in Biology prepares you for careers in health care, education, conservation, research or advanced study.
  • Paralegal Studies program offers an associate degree, a bachelor’s degree, and an advanced certificate program.  And, these programs have been approved by the American Bar Association.
  • SPC’s bachelor’s degree in Public Policy and Administration prepares you to make decisions and influence a wide variety of public policies.  You learn the ins and outs of policy making and how to become a leader.  You also gain strong skills in policy analysis so you can design effective policies. 
  • Early Childhood Education programs follow a pathway to prepare you to work effectively with early learners (birth to age 4) and their families in both the public and private sectors.  SPC can also meet your professional development needs for early childhood credentials.
  • SPC Business programs gives you the leadership skills to succeed in business.  Our programs are designed with input from local business leaders who know what it takes to succeed.
  • Engineering, Manufacturing and Building Arts programs give you the cutting-edge skills and industry certifications you need for jobs in growing fields.  SPC’s engineering technology program is recognized as a model for associate in science programs around the country.

Mark your calendar. Stop by our Open House on March 20.  Discover the great degree programs available to help you succeed in your career!

Follow us on Instagram or Twitter at #careerspc#spcintern,  #workforcespc.

Handshake: Not Just a Greeting Anymore

handshake typeset logo

Handshake is a powerful career management tool to help students find jobs and internships.

What is Handshake?

Did you know that over 14 million students and alumni from more than 700 colleges and universities use Handshake?  Only 13% of SPC students have completed their profile in Handshake!  If you still haven’t activated your account, take 5 minutes to do so.  You will be surprised to discover the amount of great employment and internship opportunities you have access to in Handshake.

Have you activated your account?  If not, what are you waiting for?

Why Handshake?

  • Search for jobs or internships by employer industry, by your major, and even look for jobs by location. You can also search by employment type, such as part-time or full-time positions.
  • Build a strong profile, receive personalized job and career recommendations, and track deadlines.
  • Connect with more than 250,000 employers, including Fortune 500 companies.
  • Gain access to information about online and on-campus career events available in one place, such as Job and Career Fairs.
  • Have convenient access through the Mobile App (Use it on the go!).


Where can I find Handshake and how do I activate my account?

If you are a current student:

  1. Log into MySPC
  2. Go to MyCourses
  3. Scroll down to Additional Resources
  4. Find Handshake hyperlink on the bottom, right corner of your screen under “Career Planning” heading
  5. Use single sign-on to access your pre-loaded profile


SPC Alumni are also able to create and request an account on SPC’s domain at

Choose, “Sign up for an Account,” and this will then push to the registration page where you can select your  user type and school name:

Once you choose your school name from the list, a set of instructions will appear – the default being:

“Your school may have already created an account for you, which is pre-filled and ready to go. This account will be registered under your school email address (your .edu email address). Please try logging in using your school email first.”

Next, Students/Alumni will complete the registration details:

Congratulations, you have created or activated your account.

Take 5 minutes and activate your Handshake Account today – you will be glad you did!

Follow us on Instagram or Twitter at #careerspc#spcintern,,  #workforcespc.


Job Fairs: Calling Job and Internship Seekers

Job Fair Graphic

Get ready for upcoming Fall 2018 job fairs at St. Petersburg College.

Looking for a new job or a new career?  Looking for an internship? Then mark your calendar for Oct. 16 from 11:30 a.m. – 2 p.m. for the Job Fair at the SPC Clearwater Campus. If you can’t make the Clearwater Campus Job Fair, you will have a second opportunity at the Seminole Campus Oct. 23 from 12 – 3 p.m.

Clearwater Campus Job Fair

Clearwater Campus Career Services is hosting a Job Fair in the ES Building, Room 104.  We are expecting 30 employers who are looking to hire for part-time and full-time positions. They are also looking to secure interns. Stop by and meet with employers from a variety of career fields, including:

·         Business ·         Instructional Teachers ·         Education
·         Management ·         Biological Sciences ·         Quality Control
·         Technology ·         Accounting ·         Manufacturing
·         Marketing ·         Sales ·         Auto CAD Drafter
·         Hospitality ·         Detention Deputy Recruit

Take advantage of this great opportunity to network with local employers, participate in face-to-face interviews, and have an engaging conversation with a potential employer.  Everyone is invited!  Bring plenty of resumes with you and dress to impress!  Remember, you will never have a second chance to make a first impression. Make sure your first impression is a great one.

Would you like your resume reviewed prior to the Job Fair?  Stop by our Resume Review workshop on Sept. 26.  Clearwater Career Services is hosting the workshop from 12:30 – 2 p.m. on the second floor of the new library, Room LI 209.  Bring a printed copy of your resume and a professional will review your resume.

Tips for job fairs

On Oct. 16, be ready for on-the-spot interviews and remember these important interview tips (they’re true for most job fairs!):

  • Wear appropriate business attire (no shorts or ripped jeans)
  • Introduce yourself with a confident handshake
  • Make direct eye contact
  • Maintain good posture, stand upright, and do not fidget
  • Be prepared with your 30 – 60 second “elevator pitch”
  • Be confident and positive
  • Smile!
  • Remember to thank the employer/interviewee for their time

Some of the employers who will be attending are:

·         Raymond James ·         MIDFLORIDA Credit Union
·         Tech Data ·         Northwestern Mutual
·         Sandpearl Resort ·         Warner Architectural Associates
·         Winn Technology Group, Inc. ·         Childcare Careers
·         Pinellas County Schools ·         Enterprise Rent-A-Car
·         Pinellas County Government ·         Hertz Corporation
·         Pinellas County Sheriff’s Office ·         GSP Retail
·         Network Insurance ·         Valpak
·         Eyekon Medical ·         Bluegreen Vacations
·         JMI Resource ·         J.P. Morgan & Chase
·         Fastenal ·         Startup Space

For additional information or any questions, please contact Wanda Kimsey at Clearwater Career Services via email at

Seminole Campus Job Fair

If you can’t make the Clearwater Campus Job Fair, you will have a second opportunity at the Seminole Campus.

Join us Tuesday, Oct. 23 from 12 – 3 p.m. in the Conference Center located next to the library.  Students and alumni, plan to use The Ready Room for last-minute advice, resume review and an appearance check. Contact Jacob Wortock, SPC’s Employment & Internship Coordinator, at

Follow us on Instagram or Twitter at #careerspc#spcintern, and #workforcespc.

Flier for Fall 2018 Job Fairs

Public Service Career Options for ALL Majors

career choices public service

Ever consider a public service career or a position in local government? In the busyness of school and life, we get distracted and miss some great career opportunities. Did you know that every major offers the possibility for a position in public service? Whatever type of degree you are pursuing, you have the potential to develop a rewarding career in public service.

Public Service Career Opportunities – Save the Date

Clearwater Career Services is hosting its Third Annual Government Forum on Tuesday, Nov. 13, at 11 a.m. in the ES Building, Room 104. We invite you to join us to learn more about the wide variety of positions and opportunities available in public service. This event is open to the public as well as students.

Career Examples:

Accounting Communications Emergency Management
Engineering Information Technology Network Administration
Urban Planning Public Administration Risk Management

The theme for this year’s event is, “How to find, hire, and retain men and women into public service.” This forum is a great opportunity to meet and engage with local city managers from Dunedin, Pinellas Park, and Tarpon Springs. Discover why and how they chose to enter into public service. Our guest panelists will share their insight, knowledge, and first-hand experiences about working in public service and in government. The guest panelists include:

Local governments have excellent career options available and these agencies offer rewarding careers with competitive salaries and benefits. With low unemployment rates, local governments are faced with the added challenge of competing with the public sector for recruiting and retaining qualified personnel. According to the survey findings in the 2018 State and Local Government Workforce: 2018 Data and 10 Year Trends Report, 82 percent report that staff recruitment and retention is a top workforce priority.

Mark your calendar for Nov. 13 and come listen, meet and network with our guests. Learn first-hand how working in public service and in local government can be very rewarding!

Flier for public service career event

For any questions regarding the forum, please contact Wanda Kimsey in Career Services.

Follow us on Instagram or Twitter at #careerspc, #spcintern, and #workforcespc.

Why Should I Register Early for Classes?

Fall 2018 Early Registration Information

Did you know there is a relationship between early registration for classes and student academic and career success? Registering early for classes can have a positive effect on students, and the earlier you register for classes the more benefits you receive both in college and beyond.

Success is where preparation and opportunity meet.” – Bobby Unser

At St. Petersburg College’s Career Services, our goal is to help students acquire the necessary preparation to achieve long-term success beyond college. We want you to get the most from your education and ensure you reach not only your academic but career goals.

Here are three benefits to early registration:

  1. Get the schedule YOU want

How many times have you tried to look for a class and the schedule you wanted was not available? Class openings typically fill up quickly, so registering early will increase your chances of finding classes that are the most suitable to your wants and needs. Registering early gives you the advantage of having the best class selections. You also have more options in selecting your instructors and the type of classes you want to take when you register early.

  1. Have time to plan and prepare

By registering early, you can plan ahead and make adequate preparations. If you encounter a hiccup, whether you receive a hold on your enrollment or your financial aid doesn’t go through, you will have more time to handle unexpected problems.

  1. Save time, money, and frustration.

Avoid long lines, lengthy waiting times, and the stress that comes with it by registering for classes early. Registration season increases student traffic in Student Services. You will also have more time to apply for the Tuition Payment Plan and won’t have to pay tuition all at once.

Did you know that you can also receive a $10 textbook voucher for the school bookstore by paying your Fall Term tuition by July 13? Save time, money, and avoid stress by registering early for classes.

Why wait? Sign up for early registration.

Fall 2018 classes start Aug. 13.

Take advantage of these opportunities and register early. Check out our academic calendar, browse through your MLP (My Learning Plan), or set up an appointment with your academic advisor, and register for Fall Term classes today!

Follow us on Twitter at #careerspc, #spcintern, and #workforcespc.


Make Your Resume ‘Optimal’

Bullet Proof Your Resume

Do you have a resume?  When was the last time you updated it?  Think of your resume as an excellent marketing tool to help employers see your value.  Clearwater Campus Career Services will be hosting a Resume Writing workshop. Learn about Optimal Resume and other tools that take the stress out of your job search. Get the know how that will get you hired!

March 29 at 12:30 pm in the New Library, 2nd floor, Room 209

Webster’s College Dictionary Defines a resume as, “A brief account of personal, educational, and professional qualifications and experience that is prepared by a job applicant.”  Anyone who is seeking employment needs a résumé.  The Résumé Writing Workshop will show you how to use Optimal Résumé, an online tool located in “My Courses.”  Optimal Résumé  has more than 500 templates designed to help college students and graduates prepare their résumé.  Résumés should be tailored to the job you are seeking, not generalized.  Career Services is here to help you create a resume that is targeted to the profession you are seeking.

Learn more about the three standard résumé styles and find out which style is best suited for you:

  • The Chronological Résumé – most recent employment is listed first
  • The Functional or Skills-Based Résumé – best for first time job seekers or career changers
  • The Combination or Hybrid Résumé – merges both the Chronological and Functional Résumé styles

Every résumé should include these sections:

  • Personal information including full name, mailing address, email and phone number, and military status if applicable
  • Qualifications and Professional Profile
  • Employment history or work experience including job title, employer’s name (address may also be required), starting and ending dates(month/year), and employment status (full-time or part-time or hours per week) for government jobs
  • Education, skills,  and accomplishments including related knowledge, attributes, publications, volunteer work, certifications and awards

For more information or to attend the workshop, contact Wanda Kimsey, Career Specialist by email at or by phone at  727-791-2431.

Links: (click on student login, then click on the My Courses tab, scroll down and on the far right-hand side you will see the link to Optimal Résumé).

Follow us on Twitter at #careerspc and #spcintern.

Attend the Feb. 13 Clearwater Campus Transfer Fair

Clearwater Campus Transfer Fair

Join the St. Petersburg College Clearwater Career Services team and representatives from various state universities in Florida at our Feb. 13 Clearwater Campus Transfer Fair, and learn more about the additional educational opportunities that are available to you.

Clearwater Career Services is hosting the fair  from 11:30 a.m. – 1:30 p.m. in the Ethics and Social Sciences (ES) Building, Room 104.  This is a great opportunity to speak to advisors/representatives from major universities in Florida and ask questions about transferring, admissions, and degree options.

  • SPC partners with more than 15 Florida universities including the University of South Florida, Saint Leo University, and the University of Tampa. Representatives from these universities will be attending this year’s transfer fair.
  • Learn more about the types of bachelor’s degree programs offered at SPC including in: Business, Information Technology, Education, Health Sciences, Science and Environmental Technology, Nursing, Orthotics and Prosthetics, Public Policy and Administration, Paralegal Studies, Public Safety, and Veterinary Technology.
  • You can also earn your bachelor degree through the University Partnership Center. UPC offers more than 100 bachelor’s and graduate degree programs and certificates through a variety of fully accredited colleges and universities.
  • Check out the Transfer Evaluation Tool! This tool compares SPC course credits with those from other colleges and universities. This tool is reviewed and updated continually.
  • Learn more about the Associate in Arts Degree (A.A.) – General Studies to Bachelor’s Degree Program. An associate in arts degree is designed to transfer to a bachelor’s degree at SPC or to a state university. You can find the requirements for approximately 250 university majors and track your progress toward completion through the A.A. transfer evaluation tool on the FloridaShines website.

All SPC students, alumni, and the public are welcome to attend the Clearwater Campus Transfer Fair! Whatever your interest is, stop by the fair, and learn more about the variety of educational opportunities available to you.


Get Tips and Expert Resume Review at the Nov. 13 Workshop

Bullet Proof Your Resume

Are you having difficulties on how to create a resume or would you like a professional resume review?

Get Resume Review FeedbackThe Clearwater Career Services will host a Resume Revolution Workshop on Nov. 13 from 12:30-2 p.m. in the ES Building, Room 125, at the Clearwater Campus. Career Services will provide you with a better understanding on how to improve your resume by:

  • Keeping your resume to one page
  • Including your previous and current academic and career achievements
  • Developing a resume style that is appropriate to the job you are seeking
  • Using proper vocabulary, grammar, and punctuation
  • Choosing the best resume style and format

Career Services invites you to bring your resume. Or, if you have not created a resume, we can help you create one at our Resume Revolution Workshop.

One-on-one resume review

Get Resume Review TipsIn our workshop, you will have one-on-one interaction with a professional who will offer you additional feedback on how to improve your resume.  Career Services will show you how to use great resources, such as Optimal Resume and O*NET.ONLINE to find and incorporate suitable language into your resume for the position you are interested in seeking.

If you are applying for a specific position in an organization, make sure to do your research on the requirements the employer is looking for pertaining to that position before you write your first draft resume.  When writing your resume, remember to include relevant information and appropriate action verbs regarding the profession or career you are seeking.  Employers usually only spend one minute reviewing resumes and look for key words to determine if someone is qualified for the position.

Career Services is here to help you create a resume that is targeted to the profession you are seeking. Mark your calendar for Nov. 13 event!