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Student fills 3 roles at jobs fair

Dustin Canner, Glaceau area sales manager gets a

Dustin Canner, Glaceau area sales manager gets a quick lesson in using Twitter from Jonathan Monahan. Photo Credit: Audrey Tiernan

Jonathan Monahan, 22, played three roles at Wednesday’s job and internship fair at Hofstra University: job hunter; intern at the Vita Water refreshment table; and informal Twitter evangelist, coaching friends in the job-search capabilities of the increasingly popular microblogging site.

Monahan, a senior marketing major from Cherry Hill, N.J., told one friend how he had just found and followed on Twitter the chief executive of a company to which he was about to submit a resume.

“It’s a way to differentiate yourself,” said Monahan, whose job targets include creative roles with advertising agencies. Three hundred others might submit resumes, he said, “but I have found you on Twitter and 300 others haven’t done that.”

Twitter is just one of the burgeoning social media tools students can use to manage their online professional presences, with an eye to connecting with and impressing employers. (That's Dustin Canner above, Vita Water area sales manager, getting a quick lesson in using Twitter from  Monahan, right.)

Indeed, social media is becoming a “dominant force” in job hunting and recruiting, said Alexa Hamill, national campus recruiting leader for PwC, an auditing, tax and advisory services firm, which had a table at the Hofstra fair.

Because “oftentimes a first impression is your online impression” PwC has been helping students learn to present themselves effectively online, she said. The firm is running a video elevator-pitch contest in which college students can submit 30-second videos that highlight “what makes them valuable and unique to prospective employers” -- deadline, March 25; potential prize, $5000 cash. See http://www.facebook.com/PwCUSCareers.

Students can also download an e-book, including tips on managing their online images, which was part of the firm’s Personal Brand Week 2.0 campaign last month.

Monahan, known on Twitter as @Jmonah3, has tweeted recently about his enthusiasm for the iPad2, Steve Jobs, the “Top Shot” reality TV show, and Panera Bread. He said the site allows young people like him to converse directly with top leaders. “You’re not just talking to human resources,” he said. “You’re talking to the CEO of a company.”

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