Collegiate D1 Football Player seeking advice!

centermvp's picture
Rank: Baboon | 100

I have posted on here before about my struggles to find even an interview at ANY company... I need some help and guidance.

I graduated from a Top 40 university that is also private and played division 1 college football (actually started and was offered scholarship out of high school). I completed in December with a degree in business management and legal studies.

In addition, I developed a start up and successfully sold the business all while in school and juggling the student-athlete lifestyle.

My networking schemes have been done mostly with my alumni network and 100% of them have said, "you have accomplished so much and you your resume is impressive unfortunately I am not able to help you". I have completed over 200 job applications and not one of them has cultivated into an interview. My career center on campus is inadequate and horrible.

I am seeking an entry level position at a IB firm, RE development company, or REIT.

What are your ways to get your foot in the door? Have any suggestions? What am I doing wrong? I am asking for some coaching (as most athletes do)!

Comments (17)

Apr 14, 2017

LInkedIn has been good for me for securing interviews (getting offers is a different story). Selectleaders.com is good for Real Estate.

Apr 14, 2017

Awesome thank you. I just did some applications on there. Greatly appreciated

Apr 14, 2017

This sounds like your ability to tell a story is your issue. From your post it sounds like you've accomplished a lot however, how would you say your ability is to explain that during networking in a succinct way?

The answer to your question is 1) network 2) get involved 3) beef up your resume 4) repeat -happypantsmcgee

WSO is not your personal search function.

Apr 16, 2017

I am able to explain my story perfectly fine. It is a great way to show how I used my time throughout school... Most people just want to discuss athletics and my business...

It is just the act of getting the foot in the door.

Apr 17, 2017

Former D1 athlete here, I can relate to your struggle.

Based on this response, it seems like you are missing the point of "telling your story". As many have said, you have accomplished a lot and it's impressive. It gives an idea of what you did while in school. It doesn't, based on the post, show how the experience set you up to be a key player in a new industry, job, etc..

Feel free to PM me and I can offer more direct feedback/advice for securing a job. The NCAA After the Game group on LinkedIn is also a great spot to seek some connections if you haven't checked there already.

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Apr 16, 2017

I'm in a similar situation; starting a business is great and so is being an athlete. you have to ask yourself though, will you be the best person they find to fill the job you want?

sometimes a great story and interesting background just doesn't make up for not being a fit.

would I be able to come play for the team you were on if I was fat and out of shape but had an amazing yet unrelated background?

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Apr 19, 2017

Just a thought- if you're "networking schemes have been done mostly with my alumni network" then maybe try switching that part of your approach. Try to stray away from your alumni network, or just approach them differently. Connect with people on LinkedIn and send short messages when inviting them to be your connection. Make phone calls, send emails, but don't just fill out applications. Anyone you meet in your field of interest put on an Excel spreadsheet with their name/email/phone number/ how you met them and always contact them. If you are only filling out applications and not being proactive in any other areas you are setting yourself up for a no response.

Best of luck.

Apr 19, 2017

I have done all of that!

I send follow up emails as well as follow up dinners and drinks! NOTHING has generated any sort of traction, it is becoming very upsetting.

Apr 22, 2017

Here is my next best advice - patience. Persistence and passion will get you a long way. Just keep fucking going man.

Apr 24, 2017

Are you looking only for full-time positions? Maybe you should start looking at temp jobs. there is a chance they take you on full time when the temp contract is up

Best Response
Apr 25, 2017

D1 football player who recently finished my career and is currently a Trader & Analyst. I went to an academically respectable state university but by no means a target school. I left no stone unturned and was relentless to get an opportunity. I was given a chance because I was more hungry than most and was willing to learn. My advice to you is to knock on every door. Utilize a tool like LinkedIn where you can literally search people who are in your desired career or who work for a desired company. Market yourself as a competitor who's willing to learn. Being a hustler will get you along way. Don't be afraid to fail or be told no because all you need is one yes. Just keep expressing your ambition to learn and succeed at what you're trying to do. There's tons of talented people with amazing accomplishments and resumes(a lot of people look good on paper) but it comes down to who is willing to get down and dirty to get the job done because those are the ones that persevere.

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Apr 25, 2017

Before I get into what I hope is more specific criticism, if you want to do real estate, I would advise you broaden your reach into firms besides just RE development and REITs, as those firms don't always hire straight from undergrad and usually don't have training programs (i.e., they want you to hit the ground running.

Now, I just read your other post to make sure I wasn't making any unfounded assumptions, but it sounds like your athletic career and 'storytelling' ability may not be the issue. I think what you are failing to recognize is that it might come off to potential employers/connections that you don't have a real interest in any of the fields you mentioned above. Your athletic background, degrees, and your company are all awesome accomplishments and I applaud you for them, but you have to look at the way that might come off to other people. To be quite frank, it sounds like you are just looking for a job for the sake of getting a job, and don't even know exactly what you are interested in or why you are interested in it. I fully acknowledge that a lot of people in any job/career are only in it to make money, but you don't want it to seem that way even if true. You want to emanate a legitimate interest in whatever career track you're aiming to pursue, which is tough enough for one arena let alone several.

Look at it this way: You have a legal studies and a management degree, which aren't directly related to entry level banking or many other financial sector jobs as finance, econ or accounting would be. I admittedly do not know how it works at your undergrad program, but the one that I came from, the managerial program was a lot more about abstract concepts than the majors I just mentioned, which at least tangentially exposed you to more of the math concepts, software, etc. The legal studies programs were a lot more about critical reading and research skills, which again, are not bad skills, but not directly related. I'm not saying I feel this way personally about your experience, just saying it might be the perception being taken away by some. As an aside, what was the nature of the business you started and sold (sorry if I missed it)? That could either be viewed as a positive or negative as well depending on how closely related to finance it was.

Post was longer than I intended it to be, but what I'm getting at is that it looks like you may have to invest some time in building up your ability to genuinely answer 'why IB?' or 'why RE development?', 'why X?' both through your resume and through conversation. It's been said many times on this board, but you want to be able to nail all of the technical questions they ask you in the interviews AND also need to show interest in whatever pursuit you're going after. I would take some time to ask yourself what you actually want to do and focus in on that niche/space and learning everything about it instead of just throwing out blanket applications all over the place.

Just my $0.02 - good luck to you!

Apr 25, 2017

I definitely agree with the above post in terms of job and major selection. Getting a job for an IB firm, RE development company, or REIT is difficult for most. Coming from a former student-athlete--yes, it means a lot to be a competitive varsity athlete but you also have to have a decent GPA and some work experience to get looked at. BC at the end of the day, lots of athletes from "top 40" schools want these types of jobs and probably beat you in that category. I would lessen your expectations. Try singling out local companies (could be in any facet of real estate or finance at this point) and make your pitch very personalized. I would think your school has some sort of athlete-alumni network that I would lean on. I've found that even if they can't help you--they may no someone who can. Are you located near a major metro?

Apr 25, 2017
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