Navigating social networking sites like Facebook and Twitter can be a bumpy ride, but Kira Tobar ’08 is proof that they can also land you a great job.
Tobar’s climb to a first-class career began in 2009, while she was working at Target Corp., in Minneapolis, Minn. She enjoyed the challenges of her business analyst position, but was homesick for her native Yonkers, N.Y. She launched a job search despite the economic turbulence, with one company topping her list: JetBlue Airways.
“I’ve always been fascinated by airplanes,” says the 24-year-old marketing grad. “When JetBlue came on the scene in 2000 with a fresh product, I was attracted to their strong brand and culture. I decided to go for it.”
Tobar tapped the Miller Center for Career Services for help in adapting her retail-based résumé to the airline industry. Working closely with Barbara Hyle, senior associate director for graduate career services, Tobar veered from the dead-end strategy of submitting generic, one-size-fits-all résumés.
Instead, casting her job search as a marketing campaign, she focused on her key skills and made them stand out in her résumé and cover letter.
“The hardest part was tailoring my materials to a specific job and company,” says Tobar. “It was time consuming.”
With her portfolio retooled, Tobar applied for several marketing jobs through the JetBlue website. She also joined social media, including LinkedIn and Bentley’s FalconNet, to better promote herself within the New York business community.
A search on FalconNet for JetBlue connections revealed Matt Migliardi ’02, a manager at company headquarters in Queens, N.Y. He accepted her request for an informational interview and Tobar was flying high.
"He saw my background and said, 'You have the background we might be looking for,'" she recalls.
In July 2010, Migliardi hired Tobar as a business analyst in JetBlue’s Airport Business Planning Division, where she scrutinizes operations and finance for the company’s Northeast region.
“I’m so glad to be here,” she reports. “It’s fun to be part of a relatively new environment and help set the future of the company.”
Her own journey complete for now, Tobar has this advice for job seekers: Build a strong online presence, join relevant industry and alumni groups, and remember – the sky’s the limit.