Friday, September 12, 2014

What Kind of Tailgater are You?

Original article from Everyday by Rachael Ray  


  • Oh, there's a game today? You can still score with creativity and a little planning.
  • Stop by the convenience store for a disposable cooler, drinks and prepared foods.
  • Keep food portable (sandwiches and pizzas, for instance). You'll have fewer supplies, so less mess.
  • Know the lay of the land. Grab a map for the best routes, spots for food and drink and pit stops.
  • Microwave your eats in the student union, then duck into the college bookstore for team towels or blankets.
  • Once you're set up, don't be afraid to scavenge. Beginners typically bum off fellow fans.


  • The fight song has been in your head all week, and you started prepping last night.
  • Show up three or four hours before the game to claim a hot spot.
  • Know who's doing what. Assign tasks like grill master, garbage collector and bartender.
  • Have a game-day kit with everything from first-aid supplies to toilet paper and ponchos.
  • Bring two coolers (one for drinks, one for perishables) and a grill. Pack tables, tents, chairs and, if you have one, a portable TV. On a given Saturday there can be over 50 games you don't want guests wandering off for updates.
  • Taking inspiration from teams, mascots or cities, theme your spread. Tint drinks with food dye and opt for individual apps (so everyone's not crowded around a bowl of Guacamole).


  • You've been wearing a team jersey since diapers and can recite stats like the ABCs.
  • Take enough food for before and after the game. It'll make the parking-lot-exodus traffic jam much more fun.
  • Have checklists of what needs to be done, packed and cooked. A list of guests' phone numbers is also handy.
  • Bring more of everything. Think multiple TVs, towable smokers and grills, and hammocks for pregame naps.
  • Fanatics are all about the finishing touches, if you really want to be the Clark Griswold of tailgaters, throw in a shade canopy and synthetic turf.
  • Organize some tailgating activities. A ring toss, trivia game, horseshoes -- whatever keeps people entertained until those ribs are smoked to perfection.

Clean as a (ref''s) whistle

  • Have plenty of garbage bags. Tape them to trees and tent poles, keeping them off the ground so they don't attract bugs.
  • Clean as you go. Done with tongs and ladles? Wash and stow them away now. It'll save crucial minutes later.
  • When draining melted ice water from the coolers, reserve some for rinsing nondisposable items, hands and faces.
  • Scrape down grills before heading to the game, but save the major cleaning for when you get home.

Who starts their tailgate when the sun comes up? We do! Make the most of the wee morning hours with these time-saving tricks.

Day before:

  • Choose groceries that do double duty. Salsa will work for Scrambled Egg Burritos with Tex-Mex Salad and with chips; sausage can star with eggs and with peppers in hoagies later.
  • Cook ahead. Assemble breakfast casseroles, like Mini Ham and Egg Casseroles or Cheddar and Chile Egg Casserole (bake them off in the morning) and stock up on heat-and-eat goodies like Cinnamon Raisin Rolls.
  • Pack (checklist in hand). Don't forget coffee and blankets or space heaters for the morning chill.

Day of:

  • Set the alarm to play your team's fight song -- it'll make 5 a.m. more bearable.
  • Make early-morning calls to the notorious snooze-button slappers in your crew.
  • Mind the time: Allow an hour for breakfast, prep and packing and a half hour for setting up the tailgate.
  • Prioritize! Set up important stuff first.
  • Leave the last half hour of the tailgate for cleaning and getting to the stadium.

 Article Originally found on Everyday by Rachael Ray 

Friday, August 29, 2014

Are you a Die Hard Aggie Fan?

Calling all Aggies! 

Take this short quiz to see if you're a Die Hard Aggie Fan. Then share it with your friends and see how you compare.

We want to know who loves their Aggies. Good luck!


1.  Do you wake up to the Utah State Fight Song every game day?

2.  Do you have this year’s game day shirt ready to wear at all times?

3.  Do you roll up to Romney Stadium in your Aggie License Plates hours before the game to get your tailgate on?

4.  Do you have the football roster memorized a month before the season starts?

5.  Do you commentate the game in your head, as it plays out on the field? 

6.  Can you unleash a flurry of team and player stats on queue?

7.  Is your voice gone at the end of every game because you've shouted the Scotsman and the Fight song at the top of your lungs a few to many times?

8.  Do you look to the “A” on Old Main Hill every time we win, to make sure it's blue?

9.  Is your lifelong dream to be a part of Aggie Athletics?

10.  When saying goodbye, do you always end with…”Go Aggies!” 

How did you do? 

Count the number of times you answered "Yes" to all 10 questions and following the ranking system below to see how you did. 

1 - 4 = Amazing Aggie Fan  

5 - 9 = Enthusiastic Big Blue Fan 

10 =    Ultimate Die Hard Aggie Fan!!! 

Post your score on our Facebook page and see how you match up against other Aggie fans.

Monday, July 7, 2014

Alumni Association Adds New Faces

If there is one thing in life that is constant, it’s change, a condition to which your USU Alumni Association is not immune.

Over the last few months, we’ve had some significant changes in our leadership and staff. Nothing life changing… but close. As an alum and/or supporter of Utah State, here is what you need to know about each of our new staff members.


Associate VP, Alumni and Corporate Relations

Dave Clark is the new Associate VP, Alumni and Corporate Relations at Utah State University. He comes to the alumni staff from the university’s Commercial Enterprise department where he was both a Director of Business Development and the Executive Director of the USTAR Applied Nutrition Research team at USU. Prior to that, he served as the Executive Director of Entrepreneurial Programs in the Huntsman School of Business.

In his pre-USU days, Dave had experience as President and Chief Executive Officer of Prolexys Pharmaceuticals, Inc., a privately held biopharmaceutical firm in Salt Lake City, Utah. Prior to Prolexys he was Vice President, Corporate Affairs at NPS Pharmaceuticals (Salt Lake City) from 1996 till 2005 and was involved in business development, funding transactions, investor relations and corporate communications. Earlier career experiences included senior management positions at AgriDyne Technologies, Clark Financial Corporation and UI Group.

Dave holds a B.S. degree in botany from Brigham Young University (1976), an M.S. degree in agronomy from the University of Illinois (1978), and an M.B.A. degree from the University of Utah (1980). He is an avid golfer and enjoys spending time with his wife, Christine, their six children and 13 grandchildren.


Director of Student Alumni Engagement

Sheldon Browning recently became our new Director of Student Alumni Engagement after working as the Community Service Coordinator in the Val R. Christensen Service Center at USU.

Sheldon has multiple years of experience managing student organizations and coordinating student-run projects and events. With the Service Center, he oversaw the processes and infrastructure for volunteer engagement and service-based learning at Utah State.

Prior to his work with USU, he served as an Independent Living Program Manager at San Joaquin Delta College and an Education Outreach Coordinator at University of the Pacific, both in Stockton, California.

Sheldon earned a B.A. degree in international studies from Utah State University (2005) and a Master’s Degree in Education Administration from University of the Pacific (2009). He enjoys the outdoors, spending time with family and being an Aggie.


Alumni House Manager

Karen Roundy is the new cheerful face you’ll see when you visit the David B. Haight Alumni Center. She is the Alumni House Manager, and came to us from her role as a Gift Processor in the USU Advancement Services office.

Prior to working for Utah State University, Karen worked at Canyon Elementary School teaching early reading skills and techniques to children. Now she manages all of the events (i.e. receptions, weddings, banquets, parties and more) that happen year round at the Alumni Center. Karen also works with the Emeriti Executive Council and enjoys the interaction she gets to have with our loyal alumni. She is a fantastic contribution to our team and can always brighten a customer’s day with her smile.

On the rare occasion that she has free time, Karen loves to read, ride horses and go boating with her husband, Mike, and their two kids.

Now that you know a little more about our Alumni Relations staff, feel free to stop by and visit next time you make a trip to campus. We’re in the David B. Haight Alumni Center; the historical house just two buildings north of Old Main, at the top of the hill.

Our doors are open and we’re ready and willing to help make your Aggie experience the best it can be.

You can also reach us toll free at 1-800-291-2586, locally at (435) 797-2055 or

Stand Up. Get Involved. You’re an Aggie.    

Monday, June 30, 2014

5 Ways Showing You Care Will Help You Land a New Job

Article Originally Published on Levo League

5 Ways Showing You Care Will Help You Land a New Job | Levo League |
        career path, careeradvice
Photo Courtesy of Levo League

Any time you interview for a job, you know companies scrutinize your education, work history, manners, social media presence, wardrobe and more. (Hint: Don’t forget breath mints.) But did you know they’re likely screening for engagement, too?

Disengaged employees are a pox on all they touch — they kill sales, bum out customers and sap the morale of high performers. As employers become aware of this, it’s more vital than ever to display the characteristics of an engaged employee. Here’s how to do it:

1. Understand the concept

Employee engagement is more than good morale and camaraderie. (Click here to tweet this thought.) It’s about giving 100 percent at work. We’re talking time spent, ideas shared, knowledge gained and persistence displayed. It’s about finding meaning and feeling stimulated in your job, mastering a skill set, playing an important role in the company’s culture and taking pride in your work.

2. Share tales of engagement from your last gig

Research shows that only 30 percent of the workforce is truly engaged at work. Employees have checked out due to lack of interest or motivation. Does that include you? Differentiate yourself from other job candidates by offering specific examples of how you’ve engaged in the jobs you’ve had so far.

Did you take on an assignment to expand your abilities? Did you volunteer for the tough job no one else wanted, just to see if you could? Did you start a network for workers in similar roles to share ideas and best practices? Did you recruit a superstar to your team? If you answered “yes” to any of these, say it loud, with spirit, in your interview.

3. Display your commitment to commitment

Engagement at work rests on a sense of commitment — not only to your job, but also to the bigger mission. If you find yourself saying “That’s not my job” or “I don’t know how to do that” more than “I think I can help” or “I’d like to try,” there may be an engagement gap.
Dive in and take on new projects. You’ll learn and be ready to speak about how you do this in a sustainable way. It’s OK to share when taking on too much is a problem, too. Burnout is the biggest risk for hyper-engaged people.

4. Showcase how you’ve become stronger by overcoming challenges

Everyone has challenges in the workplace. Unfair workloads, bad attitudes, challenging market conditions. Truly engaged employees are quick to take ownership for both successes and failures and point to the lessons they learned. Be prepared to talk an interviewer through your trials-by-fire, your resilience and your ultimate success in the face of adversities great and small.

5. Show that you’re an intrapreneur

Intrapreneurs are engaged employees with an entrepreneurial mindset. They act like owners, developing innovative solutions to problems and adding value beyond their job description. Give examples of how you proposed a product or service idea that helped those outside your team, how you identified a specific problem and implemented a solution. Then get ready for that “welcome aboard” handshake.

Engage at work, volunteer, hustle, show intrapreneurship and land your new job. And who knows, if and when you go all in, you might create your own position within the company.
Or create your own company.

Article Originally Published on Levo League

Monday, June 23, 2014

The Job Search Advice You're Taking Too Far

As a job searcher, you’re doing everything right. You have your interview answers perfectly scripted out, you tailor each and every resume you send in, and your LinkedIn connections far outnumber your Facebook friends. Every piece of job hunt advice that you’ve ever heard or read, you’ve put into practice.

But that ever-elusive job offer still hasn’t crossed your desk. What gives?

While the job search advice you’re following may be on point, the way you’re using it may not be helping your cause as much as you think. For a lot of tips, there’s a fine line between using it correctly and going a bit overboard (or even in the wrong direction).

Read on for a few great job search tips—and how they may be working against you.

Good Advice: Make Connections on LinkedIn

LinkedIn can be a job searcher’s dream. Through your connections, you may find that you have a link—and an immediate in—to your dream company. So, creating and cultivating new connections is extremely beneficial.

Taking it Too Far

Blindly clicking “connect” on hundreds of profiles and sending the generic invitation might land you a few extra connections, but it won’t get your profile a second glance.

Instead, recruiting expert Jenny Foss recommends first searching for contacts from your email address book. “Then invite them—but make it personal. LinkedIn will give you the option of sending a default ‘connect with me, please’ message, but don’t use it—sending a personal note will set you apart right from the start.”

Casting a wide net is beneficial, but only if you truly have some sort of link to those target connections. This is where LinkedIn’s “People You Might Know” feature comes in handy—to suggest classmates, colleagues, and former co-workers that you might not have previously thought of.

Good Advice: Explain That You’re the Best Candidate for the Job

Obviously, you want your potential employer to fully understand that you’re a great candidate; that you have all the skills you need to succeed in the position and that you’re the best man or woman for the job. So, it’s important to convey confidence in those abilities at every step in the process, from your cover letter to your interview questions.

Taking it Too Far

Overconfidence can actually be a downfall, as I learned from a hiring manager recently. I was in his office, talking about my writing experience. He asked me if I’m dissatisfied with my writing. “Of course,” I told him. “Sometimes I look back at things I wrote and wonder what in the world I was thinking.”

He chuckled knowingly and explained that he’d just interviewed a young man, fresh out of college, who answered the same question by asserting that he never wrote anything he didn’t like. And for the recruiter, that was actually a bad thing. You see, he wanted someone who not only had a realistic idea of the job (in this situation, that you’d have to write a lot of copy—quickly—and probably wouldn’t have time to make each piece perfect), but also had the desire and capacity to learn and grow. In the end, the somewhat over-confident graduate wasn’t deemed a good fit for the job.

While you shouldn’t discount your abilities (and you should certainly make a convincing case for yourself), there’s a big difference between showing confidence that you can do the job and conveying so much confidence that you end up coming across as arrogant or na├»ve.

Good Advice: Practice with Mock Interviews

Interviews are tough—and you want to make sure you’re prepared. So, asking a friend to help you run through practice questions is a great way to help you organize your thoughts, learn how to structure standout answers, and prepare yourself for the potentially stressful and awkward environment.

Taking it Too Far

Believe it or not, over-preparing for interviews can actually be detrimental to your chances of landing the job. As Foss explains, “It’s just as bad (or worse) to over-rehearse than it is to fly entirely by the seat of your pants.”

When you have too many memorized answers packed in your brain, you’re more likely to spend the interview trying to remember each scripted answer, rather than engaging in the conversation. The back-and-forth will seem unnatural and forced, and you’ll likely come across as insincere.

Instead, Foss recommends spending the majority of your prep time thinking over your career experience to date, jotting down a few bullet points about specifics you want to hit on. “Think about what you’re most proud of, what you struggled with, what you learned from the struggles, where you developed management skills, how you got to be so good at problem solving, and so on,” she explains. “When you’re confident with the specifics of your story, you’ll have a much easier time drawing from your experiences and articulating your worth, no matter what you’re asked.”

Good Advice: Use the Job Description to Tailor Your Cover Letter and Resume

When a hiring manager reads your application, you want him or her to immediately recognize how your background and experience make you the perfect candidate for the job. So, use the job description as a guide to fill your resume and cover letter with the right skills and experiences.

Taking it Too Far

Pulling keywords from the job listing and slapping them on your application materials probably won’t have the effect you’re going for. When you include every phrase from the job description, including generic staples like “hard worker,” “fast learner,” and “excellent communicator,” you’ll take up a lot of valuable space—but you won’t actually convey to the recruiter that you’re any of those things.

Instead, pull skill- and experience-based qualities from the job description (e.g., “hands-on experience with Google Analytics” or “experience with Object Relational Mapping frameworks”), and then show how (by using your past accomplishments and responsibilities) you meet those requirements.

Then, in the interview phase, you’ll have more opportunities to showcase those soft skills (like having a thirst for knowledge or being a quick learner) by telling anecdotes of how you've displayed those qualities in your past jobs.

As you can see, good job search tips can turn into bad advice pretty quickly. But by taking a step back and reevaluating your approach, you can get back on track in no time.

What other good job advice have you seen gone wrong?

Thursday, June 19, 2014

How to Look for a New Job When You’re Already Employed

 Article Originally Posted on Levo League

How to Look for a New Job When You’re Already Employed | Levo League |
        job hunt, employer, social media, Networking
Photo Courtesy of Levo League

It’s time. You've weighed the pros and cons. You can check “yes” to all the items on those “should you leave your job” surveys, and you know you’re ready. Time to move on to bigger and better things.

The only problem is, you've still gotta bring in a paycheck until you can find that bigger and better thing. And job searching while still employed can be tricky business.

Here are some must-dos and don’ts to make sure you keep that paycheck while exploring other options:


Don’t job search on company time.

The easiest way to get yourself sacked is to give your employer reason to believe you’re looking for something else when you should be doing what you’re paid to do. If you really need to communicate with a hiring manager during normal working hours (such as to do a phone interview), set it up for your lunch break, and take the call on your cell phone out in your car.

The same goes for interviewing. Whenever possible, see if an interviewer is willing to meet you early in the morning, on your lunch break or after work hours. Many will understand that you’re employed and will work to accommodate you if they’re really interested.

And if you absolutely need to claim a couple of faux “doctor’s appointments” to make an interview - keep them at a bare, bare minimum to avoid raising suspicions.

Also watch out for “My, you’re dressed up today!” remarks if your normal work attire isn't quite as fancy as your interview outfits. Be armed to meet such remarks with comments like “Oh, I just got some new work clothes and thought I’d start rotating them into my wardrobe. Do you like them?”


Be honest with potential employers—but not too honest.

You will inevitably be asked why you want to leave the company you’re currently working for. This is where many people get into trouble.

You don’t want to say things like, “They’re overloading me with projects,” because that makes hiring managers wonder if maybe you’re just not cut out to handle stressful periods. You also don’t want to complain about a bad boss or coworker issues, because that just makes you look like someone who has trouble getting along with others. You don’t want to imply anything that will make a prospective employer think you might eventually start looking for a new job on their time.

The best way to frame your response to this question (even if you are overloaded and you do hate your boss) is to say something like, “I don’t feel my abilities are being used well” or “I’d like a position that challenges me more”—something that demonstrates you’re a good worker who has simply outgrown your current position.


Keep it professional at the current job.

You may have already checked out mentally and emotionally, but don’t let it show in your performance. Remember that this job will become a potential resume reference, and you don’t want to burn any bridges by letting your results slide right before you quit. (You also want to avoid being fired before you quit.)


Tie up loose ends.

If you have unused paid vacation time, try to use it if you can do so without letting the cat out of the bag. In other words, don’t schedule all your remaining days in a row if you have an offer on the table, because chances are a) someone will wonder why you’re not saving a few days for later in the year, and b) your boss will probably not approve your being out of the office for two-thirds of the month.

Also don’t take two weeks in a row, then come in the following Monday to give your notice. That’s just inconsiderate, and you may need this employer as a reference down the line. (See above note on not burning bridges.)

If you work in a position that doesn’t have a specific handbook-designated job description (like in a small office where everyone does their own thing as needed), start making short memos detailing your job duties and any pertinent information your successor will need to know. This will make it easier to train them if your replacement is found before your two weeks are up—and if they’re not, it makes it easier for your employer to fill a new person in after you’re gone. Which, again, earns you some much-needed “you’ve quit, but we still like you” brownie points.

Searching for a new job while still employed can be tricky, but it is doable. Just make sure you’re careful and considerate, and you can find yourself a better position while still leaving your current job on good terms.

What other tips do you have for looking for a job when you’re already working?

Wednesday, June 18, 2014

2014 USU Alumni Association Golf Tournament 

Get ready! It’s time to start signing up for the 2014 USU Alumni Golf Tournament on September 8th at the Ogden Golf and Country Club.

“I’m really looking forward to the tournament this year. It’s going to be a lot of fun and the proceeds go to student scholarships. There’s nothing better than golfing for a good cause,” said Dave Clark, Associate Vice President of Alumni and Corporate Relations. “And with the generous sponsorship support of so many wonderful businesses, this year’s tournament is sure to be one the best.”

Among those generous corporate sponsors is USU Credit Union, which recently became a division of Goldenwest Credit Union.

"USU Credit Union’s relationship with Utah State University students, faculty and alumni reaches back to the 1950s. We’re excited for this opportunity to sponsor the USU Alumni Golf Tournament, and to associate with alumni members and friends of the University,” said Kerry Wahlen, President and CEO of Goldenwest Credit Union.

Other key sponsors include Acura, Young Automotive Group, Allied Insurance and the Ogden Golf and Country Club.

In addition to raising funds for student scholarships, the Alumni Golf Tournament also provides an opportunity to play with fellow Aggies and win some fantastic prizes along the way. Some of which include:
  •     a one year lease on a 2015 Acura
  •     a trip to St. Andrews, Scotland to participate in the OLD Course Experience
  •     a chance to represent Utah State University at the National Acura College Alumni Team    Championship at Pinehurst, NC. (only available to Best Ball tournament winners)

Who doesn’t want a free golf trip to Scotland?

According to past participant, Martin Reese, the Alumni Tournament not only gives people a chance to play golf on a quality course, but it is often entertaining as well.

“Acura was the primary sponsor and had area dealerships provide a couple of Acura vehicles to be parked on the course.  We were short one player and asked the fellow who drove the car if he wanted to play.  Not sure if he called in sick or what, but he stayed and played with a big grin on his face,” said Reese. 

Spots for the tournament are limited, so don’t miss your chance to sign up. You can do so by following the link below:

Golf legend, Gary Player, once said, “Golf is a puzzle without an answer. I’ve played golf for over 50 years and I still haven’t the slightest idea of how to play.”

Add another piece to your puzzle and help give someone the quality education they deserve at this year’s USU Alumni Golf Tournament.

Good luck and Go Aggies!