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Last Day to Get our Career eCourse for Free

It’s September 22, the last official day of summer (sigh) and that means today is the LAST day to enroll in our Avoid a Cruel Summer eCourse (at least for FREE).

If you sign up, you’ll get 22 great career lessons emailed to you every 1-2 days while you’re in the course. The course isn’t just for recent grads or job searchers, but anyone who wants to upgrade their career significantly by thinking differently about relationships, branding, and personal power.

See you in class and let’s look forward to working with you in the fall!

Four Upcoming September Events and Opportunities

Summer is almost over and we’re doubling down on our efforts to meet our dual mission of helping young professionals create opportunities for themselves quickly and confidently AND improving educational outcomes so that more young people have a shot at career success. Here are four opportunities and events we’re hosting and hope you take advantage of them with us.

The Opportunities Project’s First Year Anniversary Party and Fundraiser for HOBY


Please join me on Tuesday, September 20th at 7PM to celebrate a successful first year in business,as well as network, and raise money for my favorite education organization, the Hugh O’Brien Youth Leadership Foundation (HOBY). I participated in HOBY 20 years ago (1991, baby) and it was very influential on my development as a young adult and professional. Without HOBY, I would have never gone away to school or led the professional path I took toward entrepreneurship. I believe this organization teaches the skills kids really need in today’s economy and want to help them reach more students.

The ticket price for the party is $15 and all proceeds are tax deductible and go directly to HOBY NY Metro’s account via the Eventbrite page (minus the ticket fee). We’ll also be auctioning off some donated goods and services which we’ll update on the Eventbrite page. It will be a fabulous opportunity to support a great cause, celebrate, and expand your network so see you there!

RSVP here.

Free Webinar: Confidence Confidential- How to Sell Yourself in the Job Search


I am doing a free webinar through Big Marker’s Jump Start Your Job Search September Campaign called Confidence Confidential: How to Sell Yourself in the Job Search on Tuesday, September 27, 2011 at 7PM ET. After teaching and coaching 750 people last year on how to manage their careers, I’ve found that the issue is rarely a bad resume or lack of skills, but an absence of confidence. I’m excited to share what’s worked for my clients so you can break through the wall between you and your new exciting career move.

You can register here.

Pay What You Can Coaching is Back

We’re doing our latest round of Pay What You Can Coaching on September 19th and 20th where we offer 6 sessions at discount rates. We’ve filled two of the slots and if you want one of the last four, make sure you apply ASAP.

You can submit an application for one of the slots here.

Avoid a Cruel Summer free eCourse Enrollment Deadline Extended


Due to demand, we’re extending the date that you can enroll in our free eCourse, Avoid a Cruel Summer until September 22, the official last day of summer. Yes, you can’t probably do the lessons on the beach any longer unless you live in the south, but it’s all still good content. It will also be the last opportunity to get it all for FREE.

If you want more info on the course, check out our video on our Facebook page or straight to the enrollment page.

Posted via email from The Opportunities Project Blog

My Spring Group Coaching Program Starts Monday

UPDATED: Due to popular demand, we have moved our Group Coaching to July 11th. Everything on the FAQ holds true, except the new dates which are on the featured on our coaching registration page. Contact us for more information.

I’m excited to blog about our inaugural Spring Group Coaching Program that starts THIS coming Monday, May 16th! I have wanted to do group coaching since I started The Opportunities Project. I think that group coaching is a great way for young professionals to learn how to advance their careers. It doesn’t matter if you’re nervous about the job search, or a go-getter who wants to solidify his or her career management know-how for now or the future. Group coaching is affordable and convenient and has benefits that individual coaching doesn’t have. Some of these benefits include multiple perspectives from your fellow coachees and an expanded community that can help you long after coaching ends. You can also do group coaching with a friend which can be fun.  Finally, if you happen to be a parent who is looking for a great graduation gift for you, this program is a great choice, if we do say so ourselves.

When you decide to become a coach, one of the first things you do is hire your own coach. A little over a year ago, when I was making my choices among coaches, I decided to hire one that offered group coaching. Fifteen months later, I am still happy with my choice. Hearing about other people’s experiences and learning from them made me work through my own decisions much more effectively. Even though coaching stopped last July, I am still close to half a dozen of the other participants, personally and professionally. In addition to emails and brunches, one person I met through coaching is my resident photographer and another has helped me with media relations. Likewise, I’ve helped them with their goal setting and productivity systems.

Intrigued and almost convinced that group coaching is for you? Here are answers to some questions you might have.

1. So how does your group coaching work logistically?

The Spring 20011 coaching program consists of seven group sessions, and one individual targeted coaching session with me, if you choose that option (discussed in question 4). Each session is 90 minutes and will be conducted via Skype. During each session, we’ll tackle the topic via audio conference and a shared desktop. We’ll also use video conference when appropriate. Each group will have between four to eight people in it so everyone has the opportunity to be coached.

Unlike traditional webinars, participants in our group coaching program are required to participate via microphone every session. For example, in our group coaching program, you will practice telling stories about your work and student experiences and answer situational and behavior-based interview questions. You’ll also have an opportunity to discuss your goals with the group and receive feedback and encouragement from your group members. I’ll switch back and forth between coaching and facilitating.

There will be two coaching groups each Monday. One group will meet at 4PM and the other at 7PM. During the week of Memorial Day, we’ll meet on Tuesday the 31st.

2. May 16th is just a few days away… what if I can’t start May 16th?

May 16th is coming quickly. We’re starting on May 16th because of the holidays and we want to accommodate people who want to take advantage of the summer job market, which is the hottest time of the year to find a job. If you cannot make May 16th, you can start on May 23rd without missing a beat. We will schedule a makeup session for the material covered on May 16 for anyone who can’t make that date once we have everyone’s schedules.

3. So what will be doing in our coaching program?

Here’s the schedule:
1. The “soft stuff” – mindset, vision, goals and fear (May 16th)

2. Presenting your authentic brand: resumes, online portfolios and social media (May 23)

3. Acing the interview: Part I (May 31- a Tuesday)

4. Acing the interview: Part II (June 6)

5. Networking your way to success- online and off (June 13)

6. The 15 Hour Job Search Plan (June 20)

7. More “soft stuff” – Success on the job (June 27)

8. One-on-one with Tracy (scheduled second half of June/early July, Option One only)

You’ll also be assigned homework between each session to make sure that you become an expert on that topic.

4. How much does it cost?

The costs are broken down on the registration page and you have two payment options. Depending on which option you pick, each session will cost between $25 and $30 a session.

Option One: Pay for program in full. With this option, you will get
•    a $35 discount on the seven group sessions
•    a one-on-one targeted coaching session with me
•    recordings of all the sessions
•    no Eventbrite fees

Option Two: Pay 50% down. We get that not everyone has the cash to pay in full. We still absolutely want you in our program! With this option, you can have more flexibility. You will get
•    flexibility to pay for only four of the seven sessions up front
•    receive a recorded copy of each session for free

If you want one of the last slots in our program, register now. If you have any questions, contact us. We’ll be available all day Friday and over the weekend to take your calls and emails.

We look forward to helping you get the career you want throughout May and June!

Posted via email from The Opportunities Project Blog


April 25 Music Monday and Announcements

It’s been a few weeks, but we’re back with Music Monday and our latest announcements. I’m *almost* caught up from our travels earlier this month and am excited for a productive May helping young professionals take advantage of the growing job market in New York City and across the country.

Attend The Four Hour Goals Workshop on May 7th

Ready to make a change, including setting concrete goals and achieving them? On Saturday, May 7, 2011, I’ll be conducting Four Hour Goals:  The Art and Science of Reaching Your Goals with Brett Kunsch of Millennial Coach at the Center for Arts Education (across from Penn Station). At this workshop, we’ll teach you tools for setting long-term vision and short-term goals and how to align them to what you do every day and meet success. We guarantee that you walk out with a clear head, excitement, inspiration and confidence that you know how to get started with making things happen for yourself.

When clicking on the Eventbrite, you’ll see that we have a number of ticket options available to meet your needs. This event will help professionals across the spectrum, not just those starting out in their career.

Also, congratulations to the prize winners from our Make The Change You Want Networking event last week. Two lucky attendees- Cathie and Kesha- each won a free hour of coaching with Brett and I, respectively, and another lucky winner- Roseanne- won a book from our bookstore. We hope to have another event later in the spring.

Download our Free Guide: Get Inspired through Social Media

If you haven’t swung by our new home page (it’s why our blog was dark last week) you may have not noticed that we now have a free guide that we’re giving away called Get Inspired through Social Media. It’s a free three-page guide of exercises that you can do on your own with LinkedIn to generate new ideas on next steps you can take with your career. People forget that LinkedIn is more than a social resume, but a database of professionals and information intended to help you make good decisions about your career.

We’ll do more promotion on this, but as a blog reader, check it out and get it before everyone else! This guide will also be featured as part of The Product Factory, run by Michael Port and Mitch Meyerson, sometime this week.

Tax Day Email Only Sale!

Wondering what to do with your tax refund? I am having a two-week sale on some of my coaching products. The details are only available to people subscribed to my newsletter list. When you register for our free guide, you’ll be added to our list.

New Press Appearances

My interview with the Professional Services Journal on using Twitter chats to recruit young talent was published last week. If you’re not in the Twitter chats, why aren’t you? Also, I was added as the latest expert to My Colleges and Careers, which is exciting!

Scholarship Winners

We selection panel reviewed all the eligible applicants and Justin and I did a next round of reviews and we’re ready to announce the winners this week. Stay tuned!

Music Monday

What are you listening to this week that will get your productivity moving? I have a blog post coming up this week that touches on maintaining your power in the job search so here’s a little James Brown and Soul Power to prep you!

Posted via email from The Opportunities Project Blog


Announcing The Scholarship Selection Panel

Just five days until our Spring 2011 Career Coaching Scholarship Contest closes! As I’m looking at the applications that have come in (and there are a lot of them!), I saw a few from people I’ve met before or connected with on Brazen or Twitter and I want the competition to be unbiased. Last week, I reached out to some of my colleagues in education, communications, blogging, and recruitment to ask them to join my official Scholarship Selection Panel to help. The panel will read the applications and give me their recommendations for winners in each category. Justin and I will make the final decisions based on their recommendations and announce them on April 15th.

Here is our panel. Read about their accomplishments and the diverse paths they’ve taken.

Donald Ivanoff

Donald Ivanoff

Donald Ivanoff has been a higher education administrator and fundraiser for more than 25 years.  Most recently, he worked for Career Education Corporation (CEC) developing alumni outreach, communications and social networking programs at CEC’s schools in the northeast.  Previously, he served in two roles at Polytechnic University in Brooklyn, NY; director of alumni relations and director of student activities and leadership development, coordinating a range of programs and services that positively engaged students and alumni. He has served on the advisory board for “Student Leader” magazine and been published in “Campus Activities” magazine. Donald has a BFA from The University of Bridgeport.

Greg Palmer

Greg PalmerGreg Palmer is a strategic communications consultant to non-profits, political causes, and government agencies, with a focus on improving online and social media communications. A former staffer for NYC schools chancellor Joel Klein and Congressman Henry A. Waxman, he works toward a more equitable society. He is passionate about marriage equality, civil rights, education, poverty, good government, journalism, and civic participation, among other things. He maintains a digital home at and is rarely away from Twitter (@gregpalmer).

Niki Stanley

Niki StanleyNiki Stanley is a Human Resources Professional with 10+ years experience specializing in corporate recruitment and human capital management. Having led talent-acquisition initiatives for companies such as Olympus America, Omnicom and Time Warner Cable, she currently supports teachers at the NYC Department of Education to market themselves during internal job searches within the district. Niki also hosts a blog called Neighborhood Fellows which address events and issues that affect the African-American and middle-class communities. Passionate about being a voice to strengthen and make a difference in her community, she serves as co-chair of the Urban League Young Professional Policy committee and is a fast-rising Matchmaker, determined to do her part to spread love and create strong families.

Adriana VilavicencioAdriana Vilavicencio

Dr.  Adriana Villavicencio is a Research Associate at the Research Alliance for New York City Schools at New York University. Adriana served as a department chair at a charter high school in Oakland, California; as an English teacher in Brooklyn, New York; and worked on the development of a new school in Bangalore, India. She currently serves as a managing editor for the Journal of Equity in Education and as a staff writer for Being Latino Online Magazine. Her work for Being Latino covers a range of educational, political, and lifestyle topics. Adriana holds a B.A. in English from Columbia University, an M.A. in English Education from Teachers College, Columbia University, and a Ph.D. in Education Leadership from New York University Steinhardt School of Culture, Education, and Human Development. She also serves on the Board of Directors for the Latino Alumni Association of Columbia University.

Remember, applications are due on Friday, April 8 at 11:59PM!

Posted via email from The Opportunities Project Blog


April 4 Monday Music, Announcements

It’s Monday! Here are our latest announcements at the beginning of a VERY busy week.

Social Learning Summit Wrap-Up

Sls11_tweet_cloudWe’re back from attending and hosting the SAFE TEXT panel at the Social Learning Summit in Washington, DC, hosted by the American University Social Media Club. We had a great time and met some amazing people. We’ll have some information on our blog about the event throughout the next week. In the mean time, here’s the Tweet Cloud as of 11 AM this morning for #SLS11. People are still actively connecting with the hashtag so it’s a work in progress.


Scholarship Applications Due This Friday

Remember, you have until Friday at 11:59PM to submit your application for one of our Spring 2011 Scholarships. The competition is fierce so make sure your application is great! Our next blog post will announce our Scholarship Selection Panel.

Upcoming Speaking Engagements

I am speaking at some upcoming private events. This Saturday, I’ll speaking at the Woodrow Wilson-Rockefeller Brothers Fund Conference for Aspiring Teachers of Color at Brown University in Providence, RI. Next Monday, I’ll be speaking at The American Education Research Association’s Annual Conference in New Orleans on teacher preparation and the job market. Wish me luck!

The Make The Change You Want Networking Event

I am happy to announce a new partnership with Brett Kunsch, personal coach and founder of Millennial Coach. On April 19th, we’ll be co-hosting a networking event around goal setting, making change, and realizing the vision you want for your life. More information coming, but the event is open for RSVPs now.

Music Monday

This song comes to mind after the Social Learning Summit. I felt like we were planning a revolution for personal and community empowerment. What if you ruled the world? (BTW, Lyrics not safe for work!)

Posted via email from The Opportunities Project Blog

Book Winner, Scholarship Update, Music Monday

Where did the weekend go?

I’ve used the last few Mondays on the blog for general announcements and events and last Monday, I used it to share a song. So I’ve decided going forward, Monday will be Music Monday and we’ll share any important updates and news and top it off with a YouTube video of a song that I listened to in the last week that made me work a little harder. Be warned that I graduated from high school in the early 90s and I have TERRIBLE taste in music and my ITunes reflects that. Expect a lot of obscure new jack swing. And Glee.

Updates and News

Congratulations to Alexandra Ancy who won the book of her choice at our Building Your Soft Skills Workshop last week. Alex picked Do More Great Work by Michael Bungay Stanier. I think it’s a fantastic choice. I want to also thank Alex for helping out this weekend at the Fresh Air Fund Career Awareness Day. Together, we facilitated five career coaching workshops for NYC middle school and high school students. Students role-played a coaching session where one played the coach and the other played the client. They all agreed that it was harder to be the client. I agree. It’s not that being a coach is easy, but clients are the ones who have to make really difficult decisions and think about themselves in new ways and that is not easy.

I’ve also extended my 2011 Spring Scholarship application deadline to Friday, April 8th. I looked at the applications on Saturday and while I’ve received a number of applicants for the College Student and Young Professional Scholarships (go West Coast!), I’ve received few for the Female Veteran Scholarship and that’s because I’ve done a poor job marketing it. So everyone gets an extra week. Use it to make your application really good!

Music Monday Pick

This song came up when on shuffle this week. Silly, but it always gets me moving. Happy Monday!

Posted via email from The Opportunities Project Blog

Eventpalooza and a Book Giveaway

Happy Monday! Rain stinks. If you’re like me and highly affected by the weather, make sure you’ve loaded your IPod Rainy Day playlist with upbeat music. For me, this means a little Stevie Wonder. Check the video at the end to see one of my favorites.

We’ve got three events this week and a book giveaway!

Precise Advisory Group Executives in Transition- Monday, March 21, 2011 at 7PM, $30

107 E. 34th Street

I’ll be one of the featured speakers. You don’t have to be an executive, or in transition, but just want to hear some great career, business, and financial advice.

Building Your Soft Skills Workshop, Tuesday, March 22, 2011 at 7PM, $20

McAnn’s Upstairs Lounge, 3 W. 46th Street

I am doing my popular interview and story-telling workshop on Tuesday and am also giving away a book from The Opportunities Project’s Recommended Book List in our Barnes & Noble Store to one lucky participant!

Fresh Air Fund 2011 Career Awareness Fair, Saturday March 26, 2011

From executives to middle schoolers, we certainly have a diverse schedule this week. Since 2009, I have been a big supporter of the Fresh Air Fund’s career awareness activities and am honored to be one of the speakers. I am looking for a volunteer to help me run consecutive workshops between 9:30 to 12:30. Please contact me if you’re free.

And here’s that promised Stevie song to get you through the day. See you at one of our events.

Posted via email from The Opportunities Project Blog


Pay What You Can Coaching (PWYCC) is Back

Happy Monday! I hope everyone has survived the Daylight Savings Time time switch. I am not sure how, but taking away the hour somehow cured my insomnia and I woke up with tons of energy this morning. I hope everyone else has equally amazing adjustments to the change.

The Opportunities Project Blog I am clearing out paper in my office as I am moving all of my vision, goals, and tasks from chart paper and index cards to an online system and in the process came across an old note about a site I wanted to try called Tagxedo that generates creative word clouds based on websites, Twitter feeds, famous speeches, and lots of other things you can find on the web. I played around with it last night and here is the tag cloud for my blog over the last month. I love it! The one for my overall website is really great, too. I’ll use it in an upcoming post, but I am thinking of using it for t-shirts or mugs. It’s really that great.

Now let’s get on to the purpose of the post!

In December, I introduced Pay What You Can Coaching as a holiday special. I really enjoyed the clients I worked with and I’m now bringing it back as a semi-permanent program of The Opportunities Project where every month, I’ll offer six PWYCC coaching sessions. During Pay What You Can Coaching sessions, you can pay me a combination of what you can and what you think the session was worth. The rules are on the official Pay What You Can Coaching page on my website. To participate, you must apply for one of the slots using the application form below. Good luck!

Posted via email from The Opportunities Project Blog

Introducing My 2011 Spring Scholarship Program!

I’ve launched my 2011 Spring Scholarship program! I am giving away three scholarships and applications are due Friday, April 1.

Here are the three scholarships I’m giving away. You can apply via the Scholarship page on my News and Events channel.

1. The College Student Scholarship- Awarded to someone finishing his/her junior or senior year of college and exploring internships or first full-time job.

2. The Young Professional Scholarship– Awarded to someone with less than three years of full-time professional experience and needs some help finding a new or first job.

3. The Woman Veteran Scholarship– Awarded to a female veteran of our armed services who is pursuing work in the civilian sector.

You can also watch my video telling you about the scholarships and why I am giving them away. Look forward to your application and thank you in advance for sharing!


Posted via email from The Opportunities Project Blog