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Personal & Professional Development

Personal & Professional Development

Guiding your professional and personal growth.

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Personal and Professional Development is where you can find tips, stories and resources that will boost your professional trajectory, and personal growth. From resume-building to staying on track at work, the following resources will teach you how to conduct yourself personally and professionally.

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Accepting Feedback and Learning to Take Criticism

Taking and implementing criticism is a difficult but important part of professional life. Read on to see how to make it easier on yourself when you get a bad review.

David Oyetola
What Does it Mean to Make an Impact with Your Studies?

David Oyetola’s Semester in Dialogue experience and how you can learn to make an immediate impact on the world while studying your career.

Woman sitting at table looking at her tablet.
Working in Social Media Marketing When You’re An Introvert

I imagined that working in social media would be a walk in the park. After all, I’ve spent about half my life rotating through different apps every day like a very boring episode of Black Mirror. What I forgot to take into consideration was that despite its name, I’m not actually the most “social” person at all. Keep reading to learn all about my experience working in social media marketing as an introvert. 

Two women looking at a computer
My First Virtual Day with the Government of Canada

Working at any new job is a nerve-wracking task, but being online makes us feel like we start a few more steps behind. Read's Kit's perspective on her first few days working at the Government of Canada, and how to make those really important connections over the webcam. 

Four students in red t-shirts manning an info table
Going from an SFU Student to an SFU Employee

I started my first co-op with high expectations (and nerves) – I was finally going back in-person at SFU, but this time for my first co-op. I was more nervous than I expected, there were so many questions and I had no idea what to expect. 

Two women talking while sitting at a  coffee table.
On Self-Care, Capitalism, and Social Justice

I didn’t go into Co-op thinking that I would learn how to take care of myself. I was expecting to gain the traditional benefits–building up your resume, strengthening your professional skills, obtaining good references–but it ended up becoming much more than that.

Image of False Creek
Cycling Out of a Cycle

As I was finishing my third and final lap biking around the Stanley Park Seawall, my legs felt like Jell-O. I never biked this much before (a whopping 53 km that day, by the way), which made me wonder why I agreed to go on a “short” bike ride with my new co-workers at Vancouver Coastal Health. Looking back, however, I am glad that I agreed to join the bike ride. Continue reading to learn how this activity got me to know my co-workers outside of work – something that I didn’t know I needed.

A piece of paper with "New Years Resolutions" written on it.
Keeping to Your New Year's Resolutions

It's the start of another year, and that means it's resolutions time! Hermine from the Student Learning Commons has some great tips for acing your goals in the new year.

A person writing on a pile of papers with a pen.
Making Your Assignments Perfect: Step 1

Lost for words? No problem. The first of this two-part series from the SFU Library goes over how to edit your essay, exam, or final paper. 

Collage of 6 social media posts
Full-Time Co-op, Part-Time Artist: It Can Be Done!

I’m a student at SFU and on top of that, though, I’m a freelance creative. I do a bit of everything. As my first Co-op work term approached, I got nervous. I was terrified, frankly, that I would have to stop creating if I wanted to pursue full-time work. Keep reading to learn about how I learned to balance working full-time and being a freelance creative. 

A picture of a hand holding a phone with a blue, green, and orange case.
How to Take a Break from Technology

While smartphones and other tech devices are helpful for our personal and professional lives, it’s beneficial to take a day off occasionally. Here are some tips on how to take a break from endless scrolling. 

A person typing on a computer.
5 Email Etiquette Tips Every Employee Needs to Know

You probably know that dreadful feeling you get after opening an email that is so long your finger gets tired from scrolling. While the process of sending an email may seem intuitive, there are many considerations that should be made before hitting that “send” button. Therefore, I present to you, essential email etiquette tips every employee should know.

An empty journal laying open with a pencil resting on it.
Learning to Express Yourself in a Healthy Way

As the year winds down, it's time to look inward. OLC staff member Terae notes down her favourite ways to beat the blues. 

Person typing on their laptop
Did your Co-op Term Confirm your Career Path? It’s Okay If It Didn’t.

If you are anything like me, one reason that you might have applied for Co-op was because of the many success stories that you've read and heard about. While these stories can be so inspiring and motivating, I have realized that it’s also important to remember that it’s okay to come out of a Co-op term still unsure of what you may want to do. Continue reading to learn about what I learned after my first Co-op work term.

A person working at a laptop with a cup of coffee besides them.
Yes, You Can Have It All: A Post-Graduate Degree, Professional Experience, and Peer-Reviewed Research!

There's so many ways to do a Co-op! Read about Diana's experience with Mitacs and learn about how fellow graduate students get experience in their field.

woman holding a piece of paper with a laptop in front of her
Business Development & Sales World for Dummies (and Communication Students)

As a Communication major, I’m comfortable with hearing “the medium is the message”, getting lost in 15-page essays, and wondering why a picture of a pipe is in fact, not a pipe (shoutout CMNS 110). Throw me in a tech start-up in a (remote) business development position and well, I’m a touch out of my comfort zone. Keep reading to learn about my experience working in a business role as a Communication major. 

A photo of boots standing on wet leaves
Finding Positivity in Your Everyday Life: How to Deal with the Changing Seasons

Spring forward, fall back – daylight savings time has taken effect again, and we're in for a long, cold winter. Read our tips on how to see the bright side of things during such a dark time.

Open laptop, pen, and clipboard on a table. Paper on clipboard reads "my resume".
Imposter Syndrome and Finding My Confidence With Co-op

Michael joined SFU’s Co-op program during his first year and quickly realized one thing as he began the job search process: projecting confidence and composure are key to showing your best points and skills. Continue reading to learn more about how Michael dealt with imposter syndrome and found his confidence with Co-op. 

Eight people in a circle cheering.
Ways to Stay Active in the Summer: Team Sports Edition

Team sports are a great way to have fun with friends, especially when the weather is nice during the summer. However, it isn't always easy to organize or find the people, space, and equipment. That's why we would like to help you out. With this blog we will discuss some of the different teams and drop-in leagues throughout the Lower Mainland that you can join!

Five members of the SAH Network, two sitting and three standing.
A Social Innovation Seed Fund Guest Blog: South Asian Healing (SAH) Network

The South Asian Healing Network is a group dedicated to the wellness of South Asian students at SFU and is a 2021 SFU Social Innovation Seed Fund recipient. Read on to hear about the group's philosophy and goals for the future!

Three SFU students standing in front of a laptop.
Six Tips to Make the Most of Your Undergraduate Degree at SFU

The undergraduate experience is what you make of it – whether you volunteer, do research, join Co-op, or just go to class. Read on for more tips on how to make the most of your time at SFU.