I am a Media and Communication Studies major, hoping to specialize in Public Relations. For my field of study, being generic would mean knowing a bit of everything concerning media and being able to fit into any language-based career after some training. However, as I will go into Public Relations, to be specialized means to be versed in this particular field, versus being a jack of all trades. To be overly specialized would be to somehow to focus only on Public Relations without bothering to learn anything else about media. This is worse than not specializing in anything at all. As Gershon says “You want to be able to show that you understand the genres and can produce something that can be compared to all other instances of its genre. At the same time, you want to be distinctive and also indicate that you are unlike all the others.” (85)
As for distinguishing myself from your average applicant, I pride myself on my diligence and loyalty. I am very much a Hufflepuff in this aspect, and would promote this feature about myself. As Gershon says “Being a competent job applicant goes a long way.” (61) If you cannot put the effort into the job, then you cannot be expected to keep the job. It is common sense, which I am sure any future employers would expect from me.
However, aside from my work ethic and loyalty, I am very average when compared to other entry-level job seekers. I do not have much experience besides my summer internship or my current stint as Public Relations Officer of UMBC TheatreCOM. However, I do have experience from other non-MCS jobs I have held, such as working in retail or as a camp counselor. I do need to be careful though, as to not let any non-relevant experiences crowd my resume. Like Gershon says, “If you have in fact managed to become the flexible, multitasked self that the self-as-business logic wants you to be, you risk being too in coherent, too scattered on your LinkedIn profile.” (71)
If I wish to accentuate my strengths, I would stress upon the success of various projects I have completed with no previous knowledge of how to complete them. That way, my future employer knows that I would do my upmost to complete a project, even if I am not 100% sure of how to do so. It would also emphasize my ability to learn quickly and self-motivation. My weakness may be the amount of non-relevant previous jobs I have had previously on my resume, as well as how my resume itself may look as a result. “…which leads me to believe that once you have become competent in the genres, there is still quite a bit of uncertainty about how others will interpret what you produce or how you perform.” (Gershon 81)