University grad releases career guide for college women

Ashley Spencer

The post-college experience can make you feel like you’re swimming against the current. With so many major decisions to make and with the economy being what it is, the job market is smaller than ever. While this uncertainty is a difficulty facing all of today’s graduates, it is especially hard for women. According to Journalist Resources, in management, professional and related occupations, women take home 72 percent of what men earn. In education, training and library work, the figure is 76 percent. In fields such as the arts, design, entertainment, sports and media, women make 84 percent of what men in those fields earn. In healthcare, the figure is 79 percent, and in service occupations 80 percent. Additionally, a 2012 study found that female CEOs and directors earned 42 percent less than their male counterparts. With statistics like these it is easy to feel discouraged, but University alumni and writer Chaz Pitts-Kyser’s book, Careernista aims to counter-act these realities.

Careeranista is packed with advice to help women better navigate the often challenging path from college grad to savvy, sophisticated young professional. The 32-chapter guide schools readers on everything from job searching in a tough job market, interviewing for jobs, succeeding in a new position, building a positive professional image, managing their boss, and getting their finances in check. The book is comprised of real world testimony from the author, covering a range of topics from work advice to more personal self-image advice. “I wrote Careeranista: The Woman’s Guide to Success After College because I remember how when I graduated, I felt like college had not prepared me for many of the challenges that come with working for a living. And as I looked around, I could see my friends felt the same way.” Pitts-Kyser continued, “I geared the book toward women because I wanted to focus on the unique experiences of women and write in an uplifting tone in which women could feel like they had a big sister sharing advice.”

Junior Tanasia Page said, “I think a career guide for women can be beneficial, there are negatives and positives to having a guide.” Often women get boxed into stereotypical gender specific careers, such as clerical work. The guide helps women to see beyond the stereotypes and implores them with the skills to be CEOs.

“I founded the company and website so women would have a career resource just for them—that supports, celebrates, and educates them,” explained the author. Pitts-Kyser graduated in 2004 with a Masters in publishing. The skills and knowledge she learned at the University helped her with self-publishing her own book, Careeranista, but also with helping others get published. When asked how her time at the University helped to shape her as a writer Kyser said, “Pace University helped shape me into a book editor through a graduate assistantship, I worked for Pace University Press under Professor Mark Hussey, who is awesome. Through the program, I was able to meet and connect with leaders in the field and learn about the many aspects of book publishing.”

When asked what her favorite part of Careeranista was, Kyser said, “My favorite chapters are the ones with a more inspirational-type tone and that focus on the qualities one needs to succeed in work and life. Given this, I had the most fun writing “Overcoming Self-doubt,” the “Fear of Failure” and “Building a Positive Professional Image,” all very important aspects to becoming a successful professional. Whether you are a freshman just starting out or a senior with job experience, there is always something you can learn. My advice to students is don’t look at the diploma you’re going after like it’s a magic wand. Too many students expect for jobs to fall at their feet because they’ve earned a degree. It just doesn’t work like that, especially in today’s economy. You need to position yourself now as a young professional who has something to offer a company. This means that regardless of how many internships you have, you need another one to put on your resume to show you have experience in your field. I encourage students to intern with a different company every year, beginning as a freshman. This also means you should be networking like crazy now with professionals in your field to get your name out there before you graduate.”