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#MyFirstJob

Career Services has partnered with impactful faculty and staff at ECU for many years and we always wonder where these professionals got their start. So we started asking the question…What was your first job? Now we would like to share these #MyFirstJob stories with the students and ECU community:


 

From Reception Desk to Leader of Student Success


Dr Hardy Photo1

Name:

Virginia D. Hardy

 

Title:

Vice Chancellor for the Division of Student Affairs at ECU

Years in Position:

7 years as Vice Chancellor and 23 total years at ECU

Dr Hardy Photo2

Describe your first job.

I worked as a “receptionist” at the National Guard Armory in Greenville (near PGV). I answered phones, typed, filed and greeted visitors. I became good friends with the guardsman. 


What did you learn in that job that you still use today?

Here are some quick lessons: (1) It is important to be nice to everyone (and the right thing to do) regardless of the role in the organization. (2) First impressions and presentation matters. (3) Regardless of the task or work, do the very best that you can in every role you are responsible.

 

Dr Hardy Photo3


What advice do you have for students entering their first job?

You definitely need to be nice to people and treat them with respect, remember that presentation matters and always do your best, but also to take advantage of all the opportunities that are available, this allows for meeting new people, cultivating strong relationships and networking. Try to learn as much as you and always ask questions!

 

Special Thanks to Staff Sergeant Eakes of NC National Guard

Dr Hardy Photo4




The Competition Will Now Be Seated!


Coach Macy6


Name:

Heather Macy

 

Title:

Head Coach, ECU Women's Basketball


Years in Position:

7 years at ECU, 12 years as a head coach

 

Describe your first job:

Waitress & Hostess at Theo's Italian & Family Restaurant

 

Coach Macy1


What did you learn in your first job that you still use today as an ECU Basketball Coach? 

I quickly learned the importance of building positive relationships & how that is a key to future success. As a result of positive relationship building, the owners of the restaurant and I still stay in touch today. As a head coach, I have coached multiple sets of sisters and I can tell you that it's all about the relationships that are built with their families. That's a huge part of building a winning program.  Relationships are EVERYTHING.



What advice do you have for students entering their first job?

I would tell everyone to treat every job like they are the homeowner and not renting the place! Approach every day with a since of pride and ownership and you’ll have a tremendous experience.


Special Thanks to Nino's Cucina Italiana


Coach Macy7




Serving Up New Leadership!


Staton My First Job1


Name:

Dr. Cecil Staton

 

Title:

Chancellor


Years in Position:

Less than one year

 


Describe your first job.

My first job was working behind the counter at what would be considered an old fashioned drug store. I was probably no more than 13. Essentially, I was a soda jerk. I sold ice cream, sundaes, toasted sandwiches, and kept the fountain drinks flowing. And I sold cigarettes. That would probably be illegal today. This was before fancy cash registers, so I had to be able to do the math and make change for transactions.


Staton My First Job2


What did you learn in that job that you still use today as ECU Chancellor?

I learned that customers are important, no matter what business you’re in. It takes someone spending money to create a job. I also learned early that people have expectations and are different. Kindness and patience are always virtues. I learned that you had better show up on time, pay attention, and that details matter.

 

What advice do you have for students entering their first job?

Most employers say that there are some things that are just as important as your major; things like being punctual, having critical thinking skills, being able to read, write, and follow instructions, being able to work in groups or on teams, and just being pleasant. Those are skills that you should gain throughout your experience at ECU. There may not be courses in those subjects, but all of your work here should prepare you to be a life-long learner. Things change quickly, and you must be prepared to adapt and grow. Internships matter. And a study abroad experience is great training for that global knowledge based economy you’ll be working in.

 

Special Thanks to The Scullery and ECU alum Matthew Scully


Staton My First Job3


 


This game is in the bag!


Coach Mo - Game in the bag

Name:
Scottie Montgomery


Title:

Head Coach, East Carolina University Football


Department:

ECU Athletics


Years in Position:

Less than 1 year (4 months)

 


Describe your first job:

I bagged groceries. 


What did you learn then that you still use today?

While bagging groceries, I learned to do the ordinary things better than everyone else.  This is a practice I continue as a Head Football Coach.

 

What advice do you have for students entering their first job? 

For students entering their first job, I advise them to use positive and negative criticism to learn and grow within their profession.


Thanks Coach Mo!

Coach Mo - Game in the bag2

 

 

 

 

From Harris Teeter to Orientation Leader

 

Karen Smith - My First Job

Name:

Karen Smith


Title:

Associate Director, First Year Programs


Department:

Office of Student Transitions


Years in Position:

12 years

 

Describe your first job:

Cashier at Harris Teeter.


What did you learn then that you still use today?

I learned customer service skills. I frequently use these skills during planning and facilitation of summer orientation where I work with 25 Orientation Assistants to welcome over 9,000 students and their families each summer. I also use these skills as I work across campus departments and divisions to coordinate the two day orientation.

 

What advice do you have for students enter their first job?

Take advantage of every opportunity to gain more experience. Do your job!

 

 

 Karen Smith - My First Job2