Written by Christina B, English ’18
Cellar Door is a quaint coffee shop in Southeast Portland with a wooden interior: wood floorboards, tables, chairs, and the dark counter top where the contrasting white Square Register rests. There are two baristas listening to mellow indie music. One asks the other if he can take a smoke break.
I take in the room as I set my things down on a circular table by the window. Two hipsters at the adjacent table are chuckling together, looking outside at the house across the street. A very fat raccoon is scurrying across the roof.
I’m waiting for my former supervisor who has agreed to meet me for coffee. Summer of 2017, I was a marketing intern for a local music licensing agency. She finally bustles in with wind-whipped hair and red cheeks; I assume she’s walked the short distance from the office. We hug, I buy us a couple of lattes, and we sit down to catch up.
It’s that easy. With a simple email sent two weeks prior, I was sitting with an old boss getting her take on the hiring process. Listening to how she was hired. Learning the avenues in which she interacted with employers when she was applying straight out of college (it was LinkedIn people, get a profile). Coming prepared with questions aimed at learning your interviewee’s paths toward success is vital. I wanted to know how she landed her first job out of college and she told me. Plus a little extra once she got to talking.
Sending that first email can be scary, but remember: this person already knows you, whether it be through work, family or friends. What do you have to lose?