内容

移民二代的找工历程
Lessons from job hunting as a University grad

The second generation of Chinese Canadians seem to face fewer challenges in finding a corporate job than that of their parents. But Kevin Jia’s personal recount of his job hunt sheds light on his journey to finding employment that was filled with setbacks and shortcomings. 
 
刚刚从西安大略大学的毅伟商学院毕业的我,在还未毕业前就已经找到一份薪水不错的全职工作。和大多数加国华裔孩子一样,我找到工作对于全家人具有极为重要的意义,标志着父母对我的培养已功德圆满。我的姥姥也为此非常高兴,四处广而告之,最终甚至连我十多年未曾谋面的远亲和表兄妹都知道我找到了一份好工作。

I recently graduated from the Ivey Business School at Western University and before I even graduated, I had a guaranteed full-time job lined up. Like most Chinese Canadian kids, finding a fulltime job is a major milestone for the entire family, and marks the completion of a parent’s responsibilities. My grandmother was thrilled, going so far as to brag to distant relatives and cousins that I haven’t heard or seen in well over a decade. 


常常有人对我说“你真幸运,还没毕业就找到了工作”。但他们只看到了我的成功,却不知我找工背后的艰辛。 事实上,我在找工的同时不但要兼顾自己的学业,还要面对频频的失败之困扰。

 People often say to me, ‘you are so fortunate to already have a job out of university’. While it’s easy to see the fruits of my labor, the two years of searching for a job and countless rejections are what people don’t see. And I had to do all of this while balancing my academics. 


我从大学三年级就开始寻找全职工作。对于商科生来说,最理想的就业途径莫过于先找一份带薪的暑期实习工作,然后通过努力表现,争取在实习单位谋得一份全职工作。听起来简单,看起来易行。学校的必修课之一是一门求职课程。不错, 我的确在大学里学过如何通过美化个人简历而打通就业之路。此外,我们的就业顾问指导就曾一直强调与雇主沟通的重要性,并称这与获得学业好成绩同等重要。

I started searching for a fulltime job in my third year of university. The dream path for a business student is to find a paying summer internship, work hard, and then have that same company hire you fulltime. No fuss, no muss. Sounded perfectly achievable to me. As part of my degree, we were required to enroll in job searching classes—yes, I have a university education on how to BS my way through a resume. We were also appointed career guidance advisors who would preach the importance of networking with employers, saying it was equally as important to strong academics.


但是,在华人家庭中长大的我一直被教导说学习成绩才是“重中之重”。我时常想,和陌生人虚伪会面、言不由衷的寒暄,或喝喝咖啡聊天岂能与获得高分相提并论。因此,我将就业指导顾问的建议抛之脑后,而是将所有时间都花在提高学习成绩上。那一年,我高居毕业生排名的前20%,甚至有一位教授找到我,希望我能担任助教工作。随着我的成绩突飞猛进,我曾一度沾沾自喜,自认很了不起,。

Having come from a Chinese family, I was always told academics were the “be all and end all”.  I thought to myself, how could disingenuous meet and greets and coffee chats with strangers, possibly trump academic performance?  I ignored my councilor’s advice, choosing instead to dedicate my time to keeping my academics up. That year, I finished within the top 20% of my graduating class and was even approached by one of my professors to work as a TA. Following my own way was working out swell. I thought that I was a somebody. 


当我终于开始踏上求职之路时,我向23家公司投了简历,以期能够获得一份暑期实习工作,但结果却收到23封拒绝信。一开始,我每打开一封信都会心情异常紧张,有时甚至都能清晰地感觉到自己砰砰的心跳声。这封应该是了!这封肯定是要我了!但是一封接着一封,每封信的开头都是“我们很遗憾地通知你……”,一看到这句开场白,我便失去了继续读下去的兴趣。这些吹嘘自己如何独特和富有创意的大公司们,却都使用如此千篇一律的开场白写拒绝信,这是何等的讽刺。啊!跑题了。

When it finally came time to job recruiting, I applied to 23 firms in hopes of landing a summer internship. I received 23 rejection letters. At first, opening each letter was a heart attack—I could feel my heart thumping. This is it! This’ll be the one! One by one, each started with the words “We regret to inform you…”. And at that point, I stopped reading. It’s ironic how each of these firms all used the exact same wording for their rejection letters, but each brag about how unique and creatively diverse they are. But I digress.


对于我们大部分高分学生来说,我们早已习惯于按照自己希望的方式行事,并通过小小的额外努力便可得到自己想要的结果。虽然此前我也时常会遇到小挫折,但却从未遭遇过如此出乎意料的,同时而来的沉重打击。自信受挫的我突然意识到,自己只不过是一个无名小卒。

For most of us high-achievers, we’re used to doing things the way we want and getting what we want with just an extra bit of elbow grease. Sure there’s the minor setback here and there, but I had never been dealt with such a huge blow all at once. It was a major ego check—I realized I was a nobody. 


因为我没有找到带薪实习工作,在那个暑假我只能从事无薪实习。在寻找暑期工作以彻底失败告终后,我下定决定要找到一份全职工作。我面见了多位公司高管,并提高了面试技能。在2015年秋天,我前往一家大公司参加了首次面试,但我在第一轮就被刷了下来。实际上,后来我还参加过十多家公司的面试,结果通通被拒。直到我终于接到第十二次面试的一家加国大公司发来的录用聘书,我的寻工之旅才算尘埃落定。至于我为什么会在另外十一次面试中铩羽而归,那可成为另一篇文章的话题。

Since I could not find a paying internship, I settled for an unpaid internship that summer. Having completely whiffed on finding a summer job, I was determined to have a different outcome with fulltime recruiting. I met with several firm executives and brushed up on my interviewing skills. In the fall of 2015, I managed to land my first interview with a large corporation. I didn’t make it past the first round. In fact, I went on to interview with ten more companies, all of which rejected me. It wasn’t until I finally received an offer on my twelfth interview from a major Canadian corporation did I finally land a job. Exactly why did I get rejected another eleven times? That’s a story for another time. 


如果仔细算算我在求职、面试和个人简历设计上所花费的时间,一共高达800小时之多。有些人可能会将此视为坚持不懈的努力,但我回首之后只能说这是愚蠢之举。如果我一开始就听从我的就业顾问的建议,我很可能免去许多弯路,早就获得成功。不过我也从中吸取了一个极大教训,那就是不听老人言吃亏在眼前。我经历了多少次失败才得到这个教训?一共是34次!只有我能准确说出这个数字。

If you count all of the hours I spent applying for a job, interviewing, and building my resume, I spent well over 800 hours to land just one offer. Some would call it perseverance. Looking back, I would call it stupid. Had I followed the advice of my councilors in the first place, I most likely would have seen success far sooner. But I learned a great lesson: conventional wisdom beats brash inexperience. Exactly how many failures did it take for me to learn this lesson? 34. But who’s counting. 

 

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