Monday, August 20, 2007

I have a job!


I have to pass the test next week - get at least 70 questions right out of 100. It will be a review of what I learned this week.

My first paying job - house/dog sitting doesn't count for the IRS or resume purposes.

I'm so excited and so damn nervous and terrified.

I'll be working to the Phonathon.

My job is calling alumni and asking for pledges and updating their contact information - address, job, phone number, living status. Most of the people I'll talk to won't be able to give more than 3 figures, but that's okay.

Every pledge does matter, and that's something I now believe, not just what I must repeat to keep my job.

The hours are 5:30pm to 9pm - aren't they great? 3 hours after my latest class, and early enough for sleep (Daily Show and Colbert Report).

I must work 3 nights - and I've picked Monday, Wednesday, and Thursday. We're only work Sunday through Thursday - less chance of grown-up alumni being out partying.

My first training session was tonight from 5:30 to 9pm, officially. I got there around 5 and left at 9:15.

I was nauseous all day, and my upper back has been hurting for the last couple days, probably because of nerves, since I'm not doing anything different.

I was terrified at first, with all the responsibility laid out. But then I realized I don't have to do this, even though I said I'd do work-study, I don't need the money now because of all my scholarship and financial aid. Also, since we were there more than 3 hours, we had time to get comfortable with the idea, at least I did. Unlike my classes in a week, this was and will be much longer, and part of the eek of the first day/week of school is the fact that it's about an hour spent in the class - with everything thrown at you at once, and no time that day to adjust to it - with the teacher.

I had so much fun.

I told my boss (Assistant Director) that I was an evil robot who wanted to take over the world, not that I'd tell him if I was in the first place. (One of the rules of calling people - don't be a robot on the phone.)

My ideas for why people would give were all sinister - I blame Law & Order reruns all summer. I said to hide money, like say to pay for killing a guy. He said that wasn't realistic, he wouldn't think of that after killing a man for money. I also said people wouldn't give us money because the Grizzlies didn't make it... Oh, we're the Tigers. Whoops. (What reasons could there be not to donate? The number one reason, that nobody guessed, is death. Of the alumni.)

He mentioned the Red Sox, and I said, "You're supposed to be a Mariners fan." (Earlier, he'd said he was raised in Seattle. That's part of the job, too, at world series time. Unless I'm calling a New Yorker, who knows if they like the Mets or the Yankees? They're Tigers, they're decent people, they like the Mets.)

He said he liked the Cubs, and I said, "Oh, I'm so sorry."

That got a laugh.

I had a lot of fun.

I can't wait.

And I'm moving in Thursday and meeting my roommate. (We've e-mailed and talked on the phone.)

And classes start in less than a week.

How did I get to this place? I don't recall summer asking my permission to end!

I know how I got to the training session point - only half of the applicants make it this far, and over 75 have applied for the fall semester. They need to know that you can do this job and do it well.

Anyways, we sent in paper application, then had to phone interview. The genius that I am, I set my appointment for last Monday the same day I got called by the people for the first time - my logic was, get it out of the way as soon as possible. I mispronounced some words, and even though I tried to make it my own, I followed the script in some places, and I felt myself screw up the pacing and inflection of my voice in regards to a sentence thanks to a misplaced comma.

But I've still almost got the job.

The interviewer (the AD that's training us) wouldn't confirm or deny it, but I know.

One of the reasons listed to give money included research - giving us money to continue old research and start new projects. Well, I know we have an earthquake research facility - I've seen the building, and there was a book about an earthquake here that mentioned it. So, I told the "prospect" that if he didn't give me $50 or $25 (forgot most of it after I did it) Memphis and the University would end up in the Mississippi because we'd have to close our research center.

When I did the interview, I said that I knew I couldn't do that during an actual call.

And when I called again about directions to the training, I said,"Did the earthquake play a part?" He laughed and said he couldn't say.

Then at the training session, he said don't threaten the alumni with acts of God. And he didn't know it was me that did the earthquake, since he handled 60+ interviews in a 2 week period, but he did remember some odd interviews, including the threat.

As to its effectiveness, I said I wanted to be remembered. Again, he didn't know it was me. "But I'm here tonight, aren't I?"

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