Is there a secret to getting hired?

When Megan Griffith emerged from her undergraduate studies, she applied to 52 planning and design firms throughout Maryland, Virginia, and Pennsylvania. Only one was able to offer her a position…

Of course, the economic climate at the time (2009) contributed largely to the challenging scenario she faced. However, even knowing that the economy was improving, she did not want to be in that same position upon graduating with her Master’s in City and Regional Planning. She was determined to have a job lined up prior to graduating, and so she did just that.

In fact, not only did she have a job offer more than a month before graduation day, she had two! In the end, she landed a job with one of the 52 firms where she applied in 2009 — one of her top choices, actually!

But how?

To her peers still in school, Megan’s success in getting hired left one question on their minds: how was she able to score the “job of her dreams”? The truth is, it was very hard work.

Getting a job is a job in itself, there’s no doubt about it. Before even enrolling in grad school, Megan prepared for life after graduation. She spent a great deal of her free time networking, being active in the local planning professional community, attending conferences, creating her program’s student planning association, blogging, etc. And she wasn’t alone, her other hardworking classmates were also fortunate to land a job right after graduating.


When asked to speak at her Alma mater’s Professional Development event, Megan prepared this presentation.

The path isn’t always smooth, nor straightforward. But with diligence and commitment, you will find success! To all those recent graduates, and to students preparing for their final years in school, keep at it and have faith in yourself. You may be amazed at what you’ll achieve!


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