100 Days of Rejection — 2. Asking to Work at a University

So I saw a very interesting TED Talk video by Jia Jiang about the importance of being rejected. Jia Jiang went through 100 days of asking for requests that were certain to be rejected (ex. borrowing $100 from a stranger). I got interested in the idea and decided to try this activity out for myself. I will be updating this on a continuous basis as a series of short stories.

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I was always a fan of teaching, and I thought I’d try to give back to the community by teaching at my old university. I thought the best place to start was the Career Development Centre (CDC). Being a young alumni, I felt like I would have relevant tips for students. I went to the school and asked,

“I was wondering if I could…work at the CDC…and help students. (I wasn’t exactly sure what I was looking to help with and I obviously didn’t rehearse this). I told them it could be part-time and that I could also work for free. Surprisingly, they took me really seriously. They pulled me into one of the advisors’ rooms who gave me 3 different ways I could help out, introduced me to another organizer, and even gave me their personal contact information. I had pretty long discussions and they thanked me for wanting to help out and give back. There wasn’t a position available at the CDC, but they gave me a lot of alternatives which I accepted in my mind as “referrals”. I decided to tackle them and see what comes out of it.

Original TED Talk: