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Golden Key welcomes its newest chapter in Canada at Carleton University.

April 17, 2017

IMG_4384On Thursday March 30th, 2017, Carleton University’s Golden Key Chapter hosted their first annual New Member Recognition Event. At 7:30pm over 200 students, along with their family and friends arrived at the Carleton University’s Bell Theatre. The Chapter was fortunate enough to have the company of Ian Sankey, Director of Golden Key Canada, Mark Herndon, the Director of Golden Key International, and Brad Rainey, the Executive Director of Golden Key. The two hour ceremony began with a warm welcoming of the inaugural class by Madeline Tater, the President of Carleton’s Golden Key Chapter. “It has been incredible to have played such an active role in building Golden Key’s foundation here at Carleton. In just a few short weeks, we have gone from a Society of 5 students to one of 395,” says Madeline. Brad Rainey formally presented the charter certificate. It was an honour for each member of the chapter’s executive team to be introduced and presented with their Golden Key pin from their Chapter Advisor, Provost Peter Ricketts. Inspired by this exciting congregation of students, Dr. Roseann O’Reilly Runte, the President of Carleton University, shared, “Let me say how proud I am of those who have organized the event and those who have stepped up and said yes! I support excellence, I support leadership, I support community services, and I want to be a better citizen of the world!”

IMG_2040Following the introduction of the executive team, the Chapter was pleased to induct their first ever Honourary Members. Each Honourary Member was given a certificate of Honourary Membership and Golden Key pin in recognition of their demonstration of one or more of the three pillars of the society: Academics, Leadership, and Service. The following five outstanding individuals were recognized: Komal Minhas, producer and distributor of Dream Girl, Jennifer Stewart, the President of Syntax Strategic, Jay Nordenstrom, the Executive Director of the North American Insulation Manufacturers Association, Suzanne Blanchard, Carleton’s Vice President (Students and Enrolment) and University Registrar, and Dr. Roseann O’Reilly Runte, President and Vice Chancellor of Carleton University as well as the night’s keynote speaker.

Following the ceremony, new members and their guests, Carleton faculty, special guests, and Honouray Members mingled over light refreshments and dessert in the foyer above the theater. On behalf of the executive team we would once again like to congratulate all the new members and Honourary Members on their initiation into the Golden Key International Honour Society. Carleton’s Chapter is very much looking forward to all that is to come in Fall 2017.


Win The Job You Want

April 6, 2017

win the job you want

Win the Job You Want

Brad Rainey, Executive Director

Golden Key International Honour Society


If you are a student at a university or college, you are most likely working to prepare yourself for your first job or a better job.  The overwhelming number of respondents to a poll conducted by Harris Poll and commissioned by New America in 2014 cited job and employment opportunities as their top reasons to attend college. The best jobs for recent college graduates, the jobs you want, are ones that have to be won.  If you want a great job with a great employer, you have to compete… and the better the job, the more competition you will face.  If you are going to win, you have to be ready and the time to get ready starts when you enter university.

Based on my experience hiring graduates and helping grads get hired, I would like to offer some observations.  Let’s break the process down into two parts:

  1. Getting the interview
  2. Winning the interview


Getting the interview

  1. Earn a degree that aligns with the career or profession to which you aspire. This is almost too obvious to mention but I see countless job applicants who lack the minimum educational requirements for the position for which they apply.
  2. Earn a good GPA. A 3.0 is good but a 3.5 is better.  Many employers have a minimum GPA requirement.  A great GPA won’t get you a job.  GPA is less important than other factors in hiring decisions but a good GPA is required to obtain the interview.
  3. Master written and oral communication skills. Learn grammar and punctuation.  Know how to structure a sentence.  Practice listening and speaking to others so that you understand and are understood.  A poorly written cover letter and errors in your resume are going to get you rejected every time.  You can hire someone to proofread your cover letter and resume, but at some point in the hiring process you will communicate directly with recruiters and interviewers.  You must be able to communicate effectively.


Winning the interview

  1. Demonstrate relevant work and leadership experience. An article published in USA Today College reported that work experience and leadership positions were more important factors in determining who was offered a position than GPA.  Work experience and leadership positions were ranked almost evenly as the first and second most important factors in their hiring decisions by the employers participating in the study.  If all types of work experience were equal, I would rank full-time employment first, part-time experience second and internships third.  All types of work experience, however, are not equal.  Work experience that is directly related to the position sought is going to count more than unrelated work experience.  The summer internship with the engineering firm is going to weigh more heavily when you are interviewing for an engineering position than the full-time job as a table server.

Leadership positions are readily available on every campus.  Every honor society, club, fraternity, sorority and organization has a need for officers.  They also need leaders to chair projects.  Take advantage of these opportunities and use them to demonstrate real leadership.  Join an organization that will provide you with opportunities to grow through participation in worthwhile projects.  Chairing a committee that planned and executed a community service project demonstrates real leadership and other skills which employers seek in their new hires.  Golden Key International Honour Society chapters provide exactly these types of opportunities.


  1. Be professional.  Professionalism encompasses all of the things that you should already know.  Be punctual, respond promptly to emails, return phone calls, dress appropriately, be properly groomed, hide the tattoos and send thank you notes to recruiters and interviewers.  If you really want to make an impression, send handwritten thank you notes.
  2. Prepare for each interview specifically. Study the job description of the position for which you are applying.  Research the firm and learn what you can of their culture and values.  To the extent that you can, determine what the employer needs and wants and articulate how you can deliver what they are seeking.  Your objectives during the interview are to convince the employer that you have the skills to perform the job they are seeking to fill and that you will be a good fit for their organization.


Dream jobs exist and you can land one.  Your chances of landing your dream job will be greatly improved if you prepare.  You attend college for an education and to prepare yourself for a career.  Studies and grades should be your first priority.  Those required courses and Gen Ed requirements are important.  Freshmen composition and speech are essential. Be active on campus.  Join an organization and serve as a leader.  Land an internship that is directly tied to the job of your dreams.  Take advantage of what your campus offers and let those things help you prepare to get and win the interview that lands you the job of your dreams.


Read more about the New America College Decisions survey findings here.

Find out if you qualify to join Golden Key International Honour Society here.

6 ways an International Internship Prepares You for a Successful Career

March 28, 2017

The Intern Group copyDoing an internship abroad through The Intern Group can enrich your life in a number of ways. It’s a unique opportunity for you to earn valuable professional experience while traveling and immersing yourself in a new culture. The different ways you learn and grow during your time abroad will stay with you for decades, making you a more international, culturally-sensitive, dynamic and open-minded professional.

6 ways an international internship prepares you for a successful career:

1. The experience pushes you to become a more dynamic person

When thrown into a completely foreign culture, you’re forced to alter your behavior to fit the new cultural norm. Having to make these personal changes to fit in at an international office pushes you to be more adaptable and dynamic. These skills will come in handy no matter where you end up.

2. You can hone your international networking skills

An international internship program thrusts you into social situations with citizens from the world over. At your internship you’ll have the opportunity to meet established professionals in your field. This is a great way to build up your network of professional contacts. You’ll also have the opportunity to make connections with other interns from all over the world in your free time.

3. It’s an opportunity to gain a global perspective

Going abroad opens your eyes and ears to the world beyond your home country. Living and interning in a brand new cultural context offers you a fresh perspective. Once you step out of your comfort zone and see how another culture operates, you’ll start to understand how big and diverse the world really is. You’ll realize just how important it is to understand what’s going on in the world beyond your own borders.

4. Meeting and working with a diverse group of people keeps you open to new personalities and points of view

There’s more than one right way to do things – each person approaches a task a little differently. These different perspectives and viewpoints can help solve complex problems and bring innovation and new ideas to the workplace. Working among professionals with different backgrounds at a young age will free your mind from the notion that a certain task has to be done in a certain way.

5. You learn to become comfortable being uncomfortable

One of the best takeaways from an experience abroad is how it forces you to become more open to feeling uncomfortable and out of your element. When you’re abroad, you’re put into new situations where you may not know what to say or how to act, but you have to figure it out somehow and keep your cool. People who can adjust quickly, adapt and think on their feet are exactly the kind of people managers want beside them in an important meeting or presentation.

6. Foreign language experience in a professional setting will open up unexpected doors

Knowing a second language can open up any number of professional doors in your future. For example, if you’re at a company that is looking to expand internationally to Latin America and you speak fluent Spanish, you’re a far more valuable employee than a monolingual. Language skills also help you connect to people from different parts of the world, so you can cast a wider net when you are networking.

Learn more about how to boost your career abroad through The Intern Group and benefit from a 5% discount off any program of your choice as a Golden Key member.



Are You Watching Golden Key’s Professional Development Videos?

March 13, 2017

professionaldevelopment (1)

Many resources are available to you when you visit the Golden Key website and log in. You’ll find information on awards and scholarships, Golden Key Chapters and events, leadership opportunities, programs for studying abroad, and much more.

With all those resources available, you might have overlooked another valuable Golden Key resource on the Golden Key site . . .


The Golden Key Library of Professional Development Videos

CLICK HERE to review the available videos, choose some, and watch.  Here are some of the useful videos you will find . . .


Effective Communication for Leaders

Presented by Steve Neel, Golden Key Honorary Member

To grow as a leader, you must be an effective, compelling communicator. This presentation reviews strategies to help you develop top-notch communication skills.


Conflict Management

Presented by Jen Wright, Golden Key Advisor at University of Central Florida

True leaders know how to deal with and reduce conflict. This video teaches skills to approach conflict with confidence and move forward after it has occurred.


Secrets to Grad School Admissions 

Presented by Anthony Russomonno, The Princeton Review

Anthony Russomonno, an expert in graduate school applications who works at the Princeton Review, explains what it takes to get into graduate school. This session emphasizes a systematic approach that increases the chances of getting into the school of your choice.


Introduction to Servant Leadership 

Presented by Pat Falotico, CEO, Greenleaf Center for Servant Leadership

Learn about Servant Leadership from the CEO of the Robert Greenleaf Center for Servant Leadership. This session explores what defines servant leadership, how to identify a servant leader, and much more.


The Importance of Researching Industries & Employers in Today’s Global Job Market

Presented by Vault

If you would like to avoid working in the wrong company or industry, this is a video you should watch. Learn important career-building lessons from Vault, the publisher of authoritative guides to different industries.


All That, and More, on the Golden Key Website

Be sure to spend some time exploring all the great resources available on the Golden Key website. Log in and check it out!


Not a member? Click here to find out if you’re eligible to join Golden Key!

Golden Key Dallas Regional Summit 2017

February 22, 2017


It’s that time of the year! Golden Key kicked off its Regional Summit season with its first of three arriving to the Lone Star state; Dallas, Texas from February 3rd – 4th. Attendees got to enjoy the benefits of having their conference in the largest Starwood hotel in the country, the Sheraton Dallas. This summit not only gave students, advisors and members the chance to explore the captivating city life that is Dallas, but also the opportunity to make lifelong friends over discussions on how each individual can enhance Golden Key to impact their campus communities.

The hustle and bustle started early Friday afternoon when Golden Key members started arriving. To kick off the event, Golden Key’s University of Texas at Dallas chapter organized a “photo hunt” for all attendees to participate in. The photo hunt gave everyone the chance to meet other attendees and catch a glimpse of what makes Dallas unique.

After a few hours of adventure, attendees returned to the Sheraton Dallas for the Regional Summit Welcome Session. Golden Key staff kicked off the welcome with a vibrant roll call, a recap of the year operationally and news about upcoming opportunities for all members. The Welcome Session ended with an outstanding icebreaker facilitated by Region 8 Council of Advisors representative, Kathryn Clifford (California State University, Sacramento). The activity broke down barriers for everyone in the room which resulted in not only new perspectives being brought to light, but also new friendships. The evening ended with a small thank you for Golden Key’s Advisors in the form of a reception, where advisors got to mingle with one another and reflect on the impacts they’ve made so far on their respective campus.


Golden Key attendees wasted no time on Saturday, as everyone rose early for breakfast before the show began. Once full of energy, attendees began to immerse themselves in a plethora of workshops for the next three hours. Dallas Regional Summit workshops offered an extensive variety of content this year, including topics such as Golden Key chapter best practices, detailed strategies on marketing and recruitment for student organizations, as well as the basics of what goes into running a supply chain management organization.

After a morning inspiration, attendees turned to empowerment as the Golden Key Think Tank began. The Think Tank randomly broke up attendees into 3 rooms to have genuine conversation about what Golden Key means to them and their campus, learning what all of them can to do enhance the Golden Key experience on their campus. Attendees were given a “take away” sheet to write anything that empowered them to go back to their campus and start making a difference. Once concluded, attendees went their separate ways to re-energize with a bite to eat and then met with Golden Key staff separately to discuss heir vision is for Golden Key in 2017.


As is tradition, Golden Key ended the Dallas Regional Summit in style. Attendees traveled up to the 37th floor Saturday evening to break bread with new friends at the Gala Dinner. While dressed up and looking fly, attendees brought up children’s books that were collected for the Golden Key Kiddos Camp back in Atlanta, GA. The books will be used for the summer camp in May and will significantly help to revitalize the camp’s library.

As everyone finished grabbing dessert, Golden Key welcomed its Regional Summit keynote speaker, Linda Rutherford (Texas Tech), VP of Chief Communications Officer for Southwest Airlines. Linda imparted a powerful message onto everyone in the room on the importance of effectively communicating and active listening to not only those in the work place, but in your day to day life. She ended with an impactful Q&A where she offered outstanding advice cited from her journey that led her to Southwest.

Linda Rutherford was inducted into Golden Key has an Honorary Member as a thank you for exhibiting the values of academics, leadership and service that Golden Key upholds through its mission. Once closing remarks were given by Golden Key staff, Linda’s messaged resonated as attendees continued to discuss amongst one another, recalling their own journeys and their goals for the upcoming chapters in their lives.


Golden Key’s Dallas Regional Summit was one for the history books! From sight-seeing adventures in downtown Dallas to inspiring workshops, impactful conversations and a powerful message delivered by Linda Rutherford to conclude the summit, these two days will surely be unforgettable for all who attended.

We look forward to seeing everyone at the 2017 International Summit in Las Vegas, Nevada this July! Don’t miss out! For more information, click here.

Interested in joining Golden Key? Find out if you qualify!



How to Find a Local Golden Key Chapter and Get Involved

February 14, 2017

Golden Key members of the Auburn University chapter

A Golden Key membership offers many benefits – awards and scholarships, exclusive study programs, opportunities to study abroad, and more. But many members feel the opportunity to get involved with local Golden Key chapters is one of the most valuable benefits of all.


When you join a Golden Key chapter near you, you benefit from . . .

  • Professional networking opportunities
  • A chance to make a positive impact in your region or community by participating in chapter-sponsored charity and cause-related events
  • The opportunity to really get to know alumni who attended your alma mater . . . and to get to know members of other chapters in your area too
  • A chance to have fun and socialize at chapter-sponsored dinners, summer picnics, outings to sporting events, and more



Golden Key member of University of California, Los Angeles

How Can You Locate a Local Chapter?

It’s easy. Simply use the Chapter Locator that you’ll find on the Golden Key website. After entering your country, state and other geographical information, you’ll find a list of chapters in your area.  Click, contact them, join . . . and get involved.


Don’t See What You’re Looking for? Why Not Start a Chapter of Your Own!

If your college doesn’t have a chapter yet, why not be proactive and start one? CLICK HERE to find out how. The process is simple – get together with fellow alumni from your school and file an online application. Golden Key will review your application and let you know what you have to do to formalize and found a Golden Key chapter of your own.

Sounds like an opportunity that you would be smart to seize? It is. Find out more

Watch: Golden Key Members Explain Why they Love Being Members

February 9, 2017

There is nothing like learning the value of Golden Key from the members themselves – students who joined and are now getting so much from their memberships.

Here are some of the key benefits that members talk about . . .

  • The experience of looking out for other people and caring for them, thanks to Golden Key’s volunteering opportunities
  • The value of joining for a one-time low membership fee and enjoying benefits that are worth many times more
  • A sense of community and hope that comes from making things better
  • The chance to grow as both a leader and a good team member
  • The chance to make a difference in the world
  • The opportunity to build a professional and personal network that reaches across national borders
  • The opportunity to build the confidence to do anything
  • An opportunity to connect with leaders in your own university
  • The availability of travel grants to attend Summits in other cities and countries
  • A chance to connect with great mentors and advisors
  • The opportunity to be part of something for life
  • Opportunities to travel and learn about the world

Find More Videos on the Golden Key YouTube Channel

We invite you to visit the Golden Key channel on YouTube. You’ll find videos about members, Golden Key chapters, foreign study experiences, and much more. It’s a great way to learn all about Golden Key and get an inside look at the exciting benefits of being a member.