• Sarah Seavey

Meet Clarence: Networking with the Competition

One of the most powerful aspects of professional development is building your network. Connecting and building relationships and friendships with like-minded individuals is essential to any career.

Working in the career field is no different. I interviewed fellow career educator Clarence Anthony.

Clarence and I actually first met as final candidates during an in-person interview process. The day-long interview included both group and individual interviews. The group aspects of the day allowed me to meet and get to know Clarence as not just my "competition" but as a person, professional, and educator. In the short time of meeting Clarence, I related to his passion for a career and higher education.

What’s a typical workday for you like?

I really enjoy my work because there is no set typical day and that each day varies in terms of the type of work that I can/am doing.

On most days, I’m meeting with students individually in coaching and advising sessions, or I’m delivering programs to help students advance within their career journey. On other days, I could be strategizing and/or planning a new initiative that I would like to accomplish or advance my office's mission – the University Career Center.

What was your first job?

My first job was at Winn-Dixie, where I was a bagboy for 3 years in high school. I remember submitting a resume (I’m not sure what I had on it) and having an interview.

Working as a bagboy taught me the value of hard work and also communication and customer service skills.

What is your best piece of career advice to someone looking to make a career change?

The first thing that I’d say about making a career change is that it takes a lot of courage to leave either a job, office, or industry and venture into something new. It’s easy to stay in a situation where you’re comfortable.

With that being said, I’d say that it doesn’t hurt to take a risk to change your path. You find that you like the change or that you do not. Either way, you’ve learned something new about yourself. I’d also say that it’s important to think broadly about your skills and experiences so that you can talk about how they are translatable to the new venture that you’re currently seeking.

What helped you get to where you are now?

The biggest things that helped me get to where I am today are: First, having a supportive academic, professional, and personal network. Each of these parts of my network helped me stay motivated while also pointing me in the right direction and advocating for me as a person and professional. I also believe that taking risks allowed me to get to where I am. Each time I moved to a new state, it required me to continuously evolve, meet new people, and establish new connections. It takes time to establish consistent and authentic connections, so be patient with that.

What would your alternate universe dream job be (if you weren’t in Higher Education/ Career?)

When I was younger, I dreamed of being a football pl