You win some, you lose some

Hey all,

So I had my toughest interview two weeks go. It all started at the beginning of March, when I got a preliminary email in response to my resume and cover letter submission. Microsoft wanted to interview me! They said they were intersted in getting to know me more. I was thrilled!

The one pic I took from my time there :P

The one pic I took from my time there 😛

I did the interview and I thought it went pretty well. My interviewer held the role I was applying for and was very nice and friendly. I got to understand the role more and he got to understand why I was here. I think my interest in the IT industry really shone through, especially in the question where they asked where I wanted to be five years down the road. Without a doubt, in the gaming industry, in a community role.

I remember signing in at the front desk before the interview and spied a name of a classmate of mine– her achievements were amazing so my confidence fell. They also had interviewed numerous candidates for the week.

A week later I got another email! They wanted me to come back for a second round of interviews! Now the candidates were cut down to 4. The email also outlined how the interview process would go. I was to be interviewed by 5 managers I would be working with in the position. FIVE! I was pretty nervous, but in the end what caught me most off guard was how taxing the process was. Imagine being at the Microsoft office for 2 1/2 hours (there were breaks in between to match the manager’s schedules). You’re trying to make the best first impression. Five times. To five different people. You feel your energy start to drain, especially after the second interview.

The managers who interviewed me were all generally nice! One was extra encouraging, and I really liked her. One was a wild card one, who asked you the randomest questions that would catch you off guard. Then there was one who was technical, and in my opinion had the hardest questions. I’m glad I had the opportunity to go through the interview process. I didn’t get the job. I learned you can never be prepared enough, but try to be genuine and let that shine through.

Now comes the terrible part where I have to scramble to find a job for my next co-op work term before summer begins! I’ve got about one more month. Oh gosh. I need a job.

– Karen

Automatic updates enabled. If only.

Hey all,

Don’t you wish you had an update hub so everyone can just be filled in with what’s going on with your life instead of you having to repeatedly tell people or different groups individually? But then again, I guess that wouldn’t make for much conversation or seeing each other I suppose.

Not being in school this term was a big change for me. Never have I ever missed a term of school and done something else, but here I am doing co-op while I see pictures of everyone back at UBC. Do I miss it? Yes. But at the same time, it’s a nice change. Plus, work is letting me get a glimpse of the real world— it’s not the most exciting and makes me wish I can stay in school forever, but it’s manageable. Or maybe I’m still waiting to find something I’m uber passionate about.

Working also means that I’m no longer just seeing my friends randomly around classes or on campus, and I realize it meant that I had to reach out in order to see people. I’m glad I realized this sooner rather than later, because I’ve got many dear friends that I would hate to lose contact with! The past few weeks have been me filling my schedule up so that we could check in on each other’s lives and also just talk in general! It also meant that I got to try out lots of new food places 🙂 It’s Vancouver and it’s currently fall/winter time. If you’re not at the movies or in a restaurant, where else would you be?

I finally tried Gyoza Bar with my friend Amy. Heard about it over the summer when it first opened, but never got a chance to go! I must say, their ramen broth really is something else! It’s thick and really flavourful! The egg isn’t as good at Marutama Ramen’s, but everything else was quite nice! We also ordered their special which was a chickpea karaage. It was very interesting since the chickpea was soft and warm on the inside, with its crispy karaage exterior.

Carmen showed me this dessert place near where I used to live in Marpole. It’s relatively new and it’s called Doolami Dessert. The mango pomelo sago was delicious and my friend got the durian one. It’s not easy finding Chinese dessert places in Vancouver, especially in the Vancouver West area, so this was great to know about! This place also makes their own pints of ice-cream (I know it’s winter, but hey, ice cream) with interesting flavours. Carmen got a pint of durian ice cream and I was contemplating the blueberry lavender. But apparently, the blueberry overpowers the lavender and I’m more for the lavender.

I also met up with my ex-supervisors from work (they had both moved on to pursue other opportunities!), and we went to Bella Gelateria’s new location in Yaletown! I ordered a meat-filled pizza (I remember salami on it, but don’t remember its fancy name), and one of the other girls ordered one with eggplant. I never liked eggplant, but thinly sliced then stone oven baked made it delicious. This may be a turning point between me and eggplant’s relationship. Overall, the place is kind of expensive, but you can get away with sharing 2 pizzas between 3 people.

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Doesn’t this look super artsy? A shot from the interior of The Greedy Pig. My hand shook when I took the photo and it blurred. So pro.

Last but not least, I met up with C, a fellow blogger here! Well, technically no longer on WordPress since he actually has his own domain now and blogs from there, but it was through WordPress that we had met. Talking to him made me realize that we had actually known each other for three years. I had first started my blog when we came across each others’. He had also moved away from Vancouver for a while, but now that he’s back we managed to meet up and chill. He had suggested this place called The Greedy Pig. Sadly, my appetite was crappy that day, but their mushroom soup was still good! C chowed down his mac and cheese fairly quickly, so I’m going to assume it was good. I’ve been by that place before, and was even going to eat dinner there once, but the line up was so ridiculous my friends and I ended up going elsewhere.

Of course, there’s other updates in my life. Another first for me was updating my Facebook relationship status. Never done that with a boyfriend before, so he’s something special 🙂 But that’s probably another story for another time.

– Karen

Working away… and it’s actually not bad!

Hey guys,

So summer has started for everyone and that means I’ve started my co-op position. And you know what? Working ain’t half bad! Well mainly because I had set myself up for the worse and then realized it’s actually a really cool place to work. I’m currently working as an assistant coordinator for consumer engagement at TrojanOne— and before you ask because everyone else does, no, it’s not the condom company. It’s a marketing agency that focuses on brand activation in unique ways.

trojanone

Several reasons why I really like about my job/company:

1) They let me write a blog post on the Oculus Rift, gaming, and Game of Thrones 

2) You want a coffee break? You got a coffee break.

3) Random outings to the nearby Farmer’s Market!

4) Working in Yaletown ❤

5) Potluck Fridays!

6) Also boozy Fridays.

In which drinking on the job is actually okay :')

In which drinking on the job is actually okay :’)

7) Our CEO Mark Harrison’s blog (one of the main reasons why I applied to the company in the first place. I found his blog so funny and real.)

All that being said, TrojanOne is honestly a great place for me to officially start off in the world of marketing. Although our Vancouver office is nestled in Yaletown among lots of start-up companies (and eateries), TrojanOne is not a start up. In fact, this year it’s our 20th anniversary! The company started off doing marketing for sports related initiatives but have since branched off. Under my managers, I’m currently working on projects for BMO and ParticipACTION! Of course, the head office is in Toronto and that is where the bulk of the employees are. It has been quite an experience getting training though conference calls and Skype and I could not help but realize that I finally understand what this video is all about:

Awkward…

Anyway, sure of course I miss having summers to do nothing. But really, this ain’t half bad 🙂

– Karen