By Stephanie Garza
SAN ANTONIO—Making a good first impression doesn’t always happen in person. It can be over the phone or via email, FaceTime or Skype. With the rise of social media and networking sites like LinkedIn and Facebook, more employers are scouring the web to find out more about their potential employees.
On these sites, the very first impression potential employers will have of you is your profile picture. While you could show off your fun and outgoing personality by posting that one picture of you at Coachella, you could also show off your professionalism by making your profile picture your headshot. Don’t have a headshot? No problem! Look no further than OLLU’s very own Center for Career Development and Testing where just this semester they began offering free headshots to students, alumni and staff.
“The CCDT office felt that this service was necessary with the addition of our newest career development platform, Handshake,” said Lucero Villarreal, Career Advisor
at the CCDT. Handshake allows students to create a profile, similar to LinkedIn, where you can list your skills, education and experience to attract employers. Like any social network, Handshake allows you to post a profile picture. Villarreal said, “a professional headshot as a profile picture helps students stand out on these sites and we wanted to make sure we provided students with the tools for career success whether they use Handshake or a different platform like LinkedIn.”
With graduation just around the corner, graduating seniors are looking for jobs to start their careers. A professional looking headshot can really complete your profile. Standard business headshots can set you back anywhere from $100 to $250 so the CCDT hopes that this free service will help OLLU students kick off their professional careers.
OLLU junior Denise Coronel said she learned about this opportunity in her service-learning class. She initially planned on taking her professional photos outside of school but doesn’t have the time. “As a mass communications major, I need to have my websites or social media constantly updated or it looks like I’m not active, so this is a convenient service,” said Coronel.
Those interested in getting their headshots taken need to set up an appointment through their Handshake account. Students are asked to show up for their appointment in professional attire. Students are also invited to rent out clothing from the CCDT’s Career Closet if needed. Each appointment lasts about 10 to 15 minutes and the CCDT staff will email you the photos that were taken after they make any edits to the photos.
Villarreal also confirmed that the headshot service is a permanent service that the CCDT is offering so that all current and future Saints will be able to benefit from this opportunity.