Edge-crafters, Educators, Millennials, Universities

How Co-ops and Capstones Inspire International Students’ Career Design

By Ivan Todorov

April 28, 2023


After nearly 6 years in Boston, the finishing lines of my academic chapter have been written out. This time is filled with numerous joyful and rewarding moments that boil the excitement within me for what is coming. More than a million international students graduate from US colleges every year. They have similar excitement but also are facing similar challenges. 

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Accomplished Professionals, By Julia Ivy, Edge-crafters, Millennials

BE-EDGE FUNDAMENTALS: Built-in Employability, Boutique Employability, or Both?

By Julia Ivy

In my earlier post on three starting points for personal strategy coaching,  I shared stories of John (a veteran, 47), Tyler (recently graduated Millennial, 22), Dana (approaching graduation Millennial, 21), and David (multidimensional professional, 36) to illustrate that personal strategy coaching must start with the classification of the client’s “what’s next?” dilemma.

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Edge-crafters, Educators, Millennials, Universities

Crafting Your Edge On Co-op Abroad

By Liz Pereguda

May 7, 2020


A research study by IIE Center for Academic Mobility, Research and Impact Gaining an Employment Edge: The Impact of Study Abroad on 21st Century Skills & Career Prospects in the United States” investigates the connection between study abroad programs and the development of 15 soft and hard skills considered to be most desired by 21st-century employers.

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Gen Z, Edge-crafters

Designing for Inclusion and Advocating for Diversity: EDGE-crafters can be change-makers too!

by Bhargavi Ram

March 6, 2023


There is a demand for businesses to be perfect in the world we live in today. With the plethora of information available to consumers, we can use our voices to hold companies accountable for their lack of inclusivity or their unethical practices. Microsoft has an entire site dedicated to Inclusive Design with resources to learn how to be inclusive. Read more

Edge-crafters, Accomplished Professionals, Case Consulting, Gen Z, Millennials

BE-EDGE Institute: A Doorway for your Career Advancements

Are you uncertain about your future career path? Are you worried about how will you take an edge through your competitive portfolio? Are you confused while defining your field or industry?

If you find these questions resonating and you nodded yes on each of these questions, then you surely need to be aware of BE-EDGE Institute and its products. This is where you can get the solutions and answers to all these questions and more of your career-related confusions.

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Edge-crafters, Case Consulting, Gen Z

Consulting Will Bring You to a New Level in Your Career

January 11, 2023

by Maiia Poliakova


Have you ever done any consulting cases? Do you know what is it? Or what does it give? My name is Maiia and I had this amazing consulting opportunity with Dr. Julia Ivy. She gave us an experience life as real specialists. I have done a consulting case for the Russian company VALO Hotel City for the globalization of the market and thanks to this experience I can say what a big contribution it gave to my future career. 

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Edge-crafters, Gen Z

You Are a Foreigner: How to Convert It into Your Competitive Advantage

January 4, 2023

By Amir Elhelw


Let’s begin by painting a picture. You are a newly minted graduate; you have just picked up your bags and moved out to a new country in order to pursue a new business venture. You are new to this market and know only the essentials of its structure and how to go about doing business in it. You are a fish out of water trying to break in and make a name for yourself. 

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Edge-crafters, Gen Z

International Student in USA: Here is How I Crafted My Edge

Being an international student in the USA, the struggle gets real fast. However, you have to find a way to find your professional edge. All you need is some professional insight, community engagement, and genuine guidance to move past all the odds.


The United States has long been considered to have some of the best educational resources in the world, which attracts students from around the globe to come here to pursue higher education. My home country China is the second most populous country in the world, and nearly 300,000 students come to the United States each year to attend school. And I am one of those students. Read more

Edge-crafters, Millennials

Empowering Women: It’s all about making matches with the occupation of your dreams

by Ananya Sahni

Dec 9, 2022


Women have always been at a disadvantage when it comes to being represented and recognized at the workplace. As per a study conducted by McKenzie for 60 major corporations, there was significant drop in the percentage female’s employees up the corporate ladder. For every 3,25,000 women at entry level jobs, the study revealed that, only 7000 made it to the senior management level. Although in the recent years there have been severe improvements, there is still long road to progress with women still being underrepresented at all levels of managements. 

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Edge-crafters, Educators, Millennials, Universities

Experiential Learnings’ Impact on the Building of Critical Soft Skills

By Gerad Sockol
November 15, 2020                                                       

Experiential Learning: two words that every Northeastern University student sarcastically repeats back in a mocking intonation. And as Northeastern tour guides showcase the Boston campus (albeit virtually in these trying times) whose lush, green space juxtaposes the urban chaos yards away, the phrase “experiential learning” (one sure to enter into the prospective student’s lexicon should they choose to enroll at Northeastern) will bombard the ears of both parents and students alike.

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Edge-crafters, Millennials

How to Maximize Your Manager Mindset

by Cliff Akins

October 26, 2021


Articles like “If You Want to Succeed, You Need to Have the Manager’s Mindset” from Inc.com emphasize the importance of adopting a leader mentality. While Inc.com focuses on the manager mindset in a post-college, professional setting, the Huffpost asserts that thinking like a manager can be beneficial as a student in “How to be an Effective Student Manager.” As a business student, I learned this lesson first hand.

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Edge-crafters, Millennials

FOR IMMIGRANTS: Pursuing Careers and Crafting the Edge for People in a New Environment.

By Shreshthi Mehta

September 22, 2022


I was born and raised in Pune. For a major portion of my life, I had lived in India and had been a part of one of the fastest-growing economies in the world. I was fortunate to attend some of the best schools and universities in my home country. In spite of the recession in 2008, I was able to secure a job as a new graduate and work as an HR manager.

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Edge-crafters, Educators, Millennials, Universities

Crafting the EDGE: Approaching Uncertainty with Determination

By Aqib Rahman
August 29, 2022


In just two months, the environment in America has completely transformed, leaving many to face uncertainty.  There are 40 million Americans that have lost their jobs, with an unemployment rate of 14.7%.  Many people have been distraught from layoffs, while others like me are recent graduates just entering the job market.  As we now start reopening and restarting our economy, we must stay determined to prosper.

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Edge-crafters, Millennials

How Professor Ivy’s story has greatly inspired me as an international student

by Kexin Li

May 9, 2022


I had an interview with Professor Julia Ivy, Northeastern Professor in International Business and Strategy. Professor has extensive global experience in Ukraine/ Vietnam/ Australia/ United States. She is originally from Belarus and has an established career before moving directly to the U.S. She has years of teaching experience, she was a top-rated executive professor, coach, consultant, and board member, but she must start over in the U.S, and in her words, “As a newcomer, I had to build my professional life from the scratch. I did it. And I learned how all of us, newcomers, could do it well.”

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Case Consulting, Edge-crafters, Millennials

Through consulting, I learned the vast opportunities the business world has for me

by Angelina Joson. 

February 16, 2022


In the first semester of my college career at Northeastern University, I faced a heavy task: writing a consulting case for an existing company. It required that my team and I consult directly with the company. But how would we choose a company?

While all the team members knew a family member or friend who owned a restaurant, I knew that we should choose a unique company, selling a product that would provide an interesting and relevant case. So, I contacted my family friend, Michael Pink, who is the CEO and co-founder of SmartPM TechnologiesRead more

Case Consulting, Edge-crafters, Millennials

How I developed a passion for expansion consulting as a newcomer to the CBD industry

by Stella Zilberberg

February 15, 2022

Over the course of the consulting case, I began to develop an understanding of emerging markets, and most importantly, began to think of ways of how to position industry leaders in foreign markets, where the industry itself is either incredibly small or is only beginning to emerge. As a researcher, I feel that I have developed strong habits for seeking out primary information about a government or an industry. 

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Case Consulting, Edge-crafters, Millennials

Equipping yourself for the future: The valuable lessons to learn in consulting

by Alyse Pasqualini

February 8, 2022


I worked with a team throughout the semester to develop a consulting case for a company. Working on this case provided me with a real world understanding of consulting which aligns with my vision of working in Healthcare Management, as the profession will require me to work in teams to create recommendations for the improvement of healthcare processes. This case served as a steppingstone to my personal strategy by introducing me to this area of business and allowing me to develop the skills that are necessary to collaborate effectively in a team and provide quality research and recommendations to support the decision-making process of a company. 

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Case Consulting, Edge-crafters, Millennials

The perfect building block for a potential career

by Vidit Shah

February 7, 2022


In a study published by Richard J. Kraft, talks about why experience is key and that the education systems need unique forms of teaching to reach out to students as everyone studies and learns at their own pace. The author explains that “adventure programs and other experiential learning environments have enormous potential for use in the mainstream of our educational settings.” Sitting in front of a classroom and listening to lectures repeatedly may not be the best form of education for some learners, so other experiential forms of education could have a better impact on the studentRead more

Case Consulting, Edge-crafters, Millennials, Universities

First Journey in International Business and the Business World

by Aye Myat Kyaw

February 3, 2022


Consulting for a real company was not what I expected to be tasked by my professor Dr. Julia Ivy on the first day of my undergraduate. I have only become a college student by title and being faced with this daunting task, I felt like a child thrown into the deep end to be taught how to swim. To a degree, I knew what the task was: I have run my own small business and worked at a local restaurant helping keep their book, but a consulting case was another task. Likewise, I know what swimming was; I could kick and paddle but to float was a whole other story. However, I was excited. Coming to a school like Northeastern, I wanted to push my abilities and knowledge. For me, the consulting case was one I saw as fruitful in the future, determining that it would be a fantastic learning experience.

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Case Consulting, Edge-crafters, Millennials, Universities

From Freshman to Consultant: Investing in my Employability

by Keegan Sharp

January 27, 2021


As an incoming freshman at Northeastern University, I craved an understanding of my skill level and a real-world challenge. That is exactly what I got through a consulting case project from Professor Julia Ivy. The project began simply with assigned teams and instructions to identify a company that wanted to expand globally.

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Diverse individuals joining hands
Edge-crafters, Millennials

How to Utilize Your Social Capital During the Early Stages of Your Job Search

While finding the ideal company as a recent college graduate may feel daunting, it can be equally as fulfilling if approached strategically and honestly. Strategy concerns how one will leverage their personal, social, and professional capital. Honesty is the imperative agent that allows one to be confident in their elucidated core and diversified skillset. If one is honest, not only with their potential employers, but more importantly, with themselves, they will be more likely to find a professional environment in which they can grow and excel.

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By Julia Ivy, Edge-crafters

The Impact of Boutique Employability on the New Reality of Employability

By Julia Ivy

October 5, 2021


Just a month ago, I started the article for graduates regarding a historically low unemployment rate. At that time, it was easy to find a job even though some jobs could be boring and one-dimensional. For those, who wanted more than just a job, I suggested the option of pursuing a personal strategy of BE for “crafting your edge for today’s job market.”

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Plane landing coming back from overseas work
Accomplished Professionals, Case Consulting, Edge-crafters, Millennials

Employing Overseas Experience for My Boutique Employability

By Raul Najera Bahena
May, 2021


An article published by the King’s College of London “Why Overseas Experience is Important” states the reasons why overseas experience can make a difference in your future career- this type of assignments helps you gain a competitive advantage among your peers such as gaining a new perspective, learning a new language, bringing out your adventurous side, taking on a global mind-set and creating a new network from across the globe, among others.

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Accomplished Professionals, Case Consulting, Edge-crafters, Employers, Millennials

Strategic Senior Leaders are Looking to HR Leaders to Bring their Business to the Next Level

By Shana Feggins
May 1, 2021


The Forbes article “Can HR Strategies Create a Competitive Advantage for Your Company?” by Scholley Bubenik echoes the chatter from human resources and other functional leaders that YES “maximizing your human capital is a major contributor to achieving a competitive edge in the marketplace.

Be-Edge crafters like myself need a framework to uncover their core and competitive advantage. Dr. Ivy Be-Edge tool and methodology helped guide my experience of recognizing my personal, social, and professional capital through consulting projects. I was able to answer my own question of how I can be an HR leader for my organization.

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Accomplished Professionals, Edge-crafters, Educators, Millennials, Universities

Employability of MBA Graduates in a Post Pandemic World

By Ty Taylor
April 30, 2021


Studies have shown that graduate school applications rise in periods of an economic downturn, and that trend has continued with the Covid pandemic. More specifically, business school in the United States saw double-digit percentage application increases in the fall of 2020, and the top M.B.A. programs managed to reverse “several years of declining demand, according to the nonprofit Graduate Management Admission Council, which tracks hundreds of M.B.A. programs.Read more

Edge-crafters, Educators, Millennials, Universities

Career Choice: The Importance of Knowing What You DON’T Like

By Juan Dib

April 2021.


As my college career comes to an end after five years, I reflect on how learning what you don’t like guides you to know your real passions and what you like. After living in 4 different cities, working in 4 different industries, and having mixed experiences, I can finally say that I know what I want to do in my professional career.

A recent study revealed that 44% of undergraduates are unable to define the industry that they would like to work in once they graduate. That’s why I wanted to share my story and suggest some actions that can help to find real passions.

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Accomplished Professionals, Edge-crafters, Millennials

How to Navigate a Career Change

by Tatsiana Zhalniarkevich


The Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) has never attempted to estimate how often people change careers along their working lives due to the lack of consensus around what exactly is considered a career change. However, it is estimated that people change jobs about six times between ages 18 and 24, two times between ages 25 and 34, three times between ages 35 and 44.

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Edge-crafters, Millennials

Your Own Competitive Advantage

By Chaewon Jung
April 28, 2021


Throughout my business undergraduate program at Northeastern University, a concept that was often mentioned was that of competitive advantage — specifically its importance in business success . Competitive advantage, as defined by the Corporate Finance Institute, is an attribute or trait that allows a company to distinguish itself from and outperform its competitors. Especially in the marketing program, it was emphasized in every course that a company needs a strong competitive advantage in order to gain market share and prove itself successful.

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Accomplished Professionals, Edge-crafters

Technical Professional Branching Into Business? Find Your Blue Ocean

By Tom Backus
April 29, 2021


As referenced in the article “Simplified Strategies in Understanding Personal Strategy of Boutique Employability,” crafting your personal strategy revolves around finding one’s Boutique Employability. This entails positioning yourself as a multidimensional professional that brings something unique to the table and differentiates you from every other jobseeker (Ivy, 2020). But how does one stand apart when they are transitioning between defined technical careers and the wide world of business?

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Edge-crafters, Employers, Millennials

East Boston Consult-a-thon unites Neighbors for Small Business Recovery

By Laura Ballek Cole

April 1, 2021

MARCH 26, 2021, Four East Boston businesses and 16 volunteer young professionals, a number of which are East Boston residents, came together for a “Consult-a-thon” to work on solving the challenges small businesses are facing in the neighborhood. This hackathon-style event was organized as a four-step process based on the BE-EDGE method by Julia Ivy with the goal to help millennials and immigrant-run businesses of East Boston to synchronize their goals and passions. Read more

Edge-crafters, Millennials

How to emotionally connect with your audience to drive engagement

By Trianne Bamba 

March 2, 2022


There are different techniques used in marketing, promoting, and advertising products and services. Emotional marketing is one of the effective techniques of marketing. Marketers utilize this technique to focus on emotions like happiness, sadness, fear, and anger to engage the consumer and increase sales of their product or service by inciting response.

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Accomplished Professionals, By Julia Ivy, Edge-crafters, Educators, Employers, Millennials, Universities

The Role of Social Capital in a Community: 5 Things to Prioritize

December 2021


Considering the analogy of social capital at an individual level; you are always advised that your social circle has a significant influence in your future success in business or career development. On a large scale, the idea transcends to the societal parameters (the network of people and their relationship) that dictate the logistics for community development.

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Edge-crafters, Millennials

MILLENNIALS: When Jobs Are Gone, Craft Your Own

By Julia Ivy, PhD
May 13, 2020. Published on June 9, 2020  at HR.com


The Millennial generation (born between 1980 and 2000) now comprises about one-half of the American workforce, and this generation has been hit hardest by the COVID-19 pandemic. More Millennials (61 percent) have lost their job or had their hours or salaries reduced than any other generational group due to the pandemic.

At the same time, this generation is the most educated. Historical data of educational levels among people 25 to 29 years of age shows 40 percent of Millennials held advanced degrees in 2016 compared to 32 percent of Generation Xers in 2000 and 26 percent of Boomers in 1985.

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By Julia Ivy, Edge-crafters, Educators, Universities

What is the Impact of Capstone Courses on Students’ Employability?

By Swapnil Lokhande.
Faculty Mentor: Julia Ivy
May 14, 2020


The research involves the analysis of the impact of the Capstone program on the employability of the students or job seekers. The fundamental analysis in this research involves the identification of the keywords used by the people (authors) while discussing the benefits of capstone courses in the academic curriculum. The specified goal is to categorize the findings through the BE-EDGE concept and see how far the capstone project helps students in developing their personal, social, and professional capital.

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By Julia Ivy, Edge-crafters, Educators, Universities

What is the Impact of Capstone Courses on Students’ Employability?

by Swapnil Lokhande

Supervised by Dr. Julia Ivy

May 14, 2020


The research involves the analysis of the impact of the Capstone program on the employability of the students or job seekers. The fundamental analysis in this research involves the identification of the keywords used by the people (authors) while discussing the benefits of capstone in the academic curriculum. The goal is to identify the keywords and analyze them based on the BE-EDGE methodology and see how far the capstone project helps students in developing their Personal, Social and Professional Capital.

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Edge-crafters, Educators

Boutique Employability in a Chinese Investment Firm


April 27, 2020


In seven days, I will officially be a college graduate. I plan to work in a large investment firm in China. After using the BE-EDGE methodology to analyze the corporate decision of Intuit’s QuickBooks trying to expand its market to China, I realized I had a unique niche of marketable skills as well that add value to my future career, especially in how I can find a job that is a good fit for me rather than conforming to what a company expects in its supposedly ideal job candidate. I crafted a personal strategy for my boutique employability.

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Edge-crafters, Millennials

How to Create a Meaningful Career Path to Successfully Go from a Graduate Student to a Young Professional

By Alix Crichton

April 26, 2020


Happy employees could increase “sales by 37%, productivity by 31%, and accuracy on tasks by 19%.” (Shawn Achor, 2011). In 2011, Shawn Achor demonstrated that happiness at work is not only beneficial for self-development, but it is also a key success factor for employers.

With this statement in mind, I dedicated my last year of graduate school to seeking the perfect job. Like many Millennials, I felt that the traditional job market did not go along with a fulfilling career (Julia Ivy, 2019). The Answer seemed to be elsewhere, but maybe I did not ask myself the right questions.

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Edge-crafters, Educators

How to Pitch Your “Self-Help” Book

By Julia Ivy

January 15, 2020


Sales of self-help books reached record levels in the past year, surpassing three million. According to The Guardian, this represents a 20% increase over previous years, “propelling self-improvement or pop psychology into one of the fastest-growing genres of publishing.” According to Publishing Perspectives, self-help books are the world’s bestselling genre. Today, a broad range of authors can find an audience in this fast-growing sector. But marketing a self-help book on a topic beyond health and wellness can be tricky.

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Accomplished Professionals, Edge-crafters, Educators, Employers, Millennials

2020 New Years’ Resolution: “It’s Time for Your Boutique Employability”

By Julia Ivy

December 26, 2019


At the beginning of December, Ian Thomsen, a journalist, contacted me to schedule an interview about my book “Crafting Your EDGE for Today’s Job Market” — the book that equips Millennials, graduates, and soon-to-be graduates, with an instrument to craft their Boutique Employability while they are still in college doing their capstone projects and internships.  We also discussed that the book would serve accomplished professionals (say, veterans) with a tool for how they can utilize their already accumulated personal, social, and professional capital for self-differentiation in the civilian market. 

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Accomplished Professionals, Edge-crafters, Veterans


By Julia Ivy

November 30, 2019


A simple Google search revealed within seconds that there are around 45,000 veteran organizations in the United States, and many of them are dedicated to assisting veterans with the transition to civilian life. Most of them have veterans on the board who used to face the same “what’s next?” challenge; they have found the way out, so they are eager to help others. On top of this, we have several regulations that encourage businesses and state organizations to hire veterans.

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Accomplished Professionals, By Julia Ivy, Edge-crafters, Millennials

Understanding Your Personal Strategy of Boutique Employability

By Julia Ivy

November 25, 2019


This post talks about understanding the strategy behind the personal strategy, and not just any personal strategy but Personal Strategy for Boutique Employability. First of all, the term Personal Strategy is overused, while not really defined.  While it obviously includes the “strategy” in its definition, it’s frequently used by psychologies to emphasize their message that a person should define and own their own path in life.

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Edge-crafters, Millennials, Veterans

Job Candidates: Role of Community Engagement in High-Trust Environment Building

Differential generation employees, Millennials Job candidates for instance, often suffer from low-self esteem due to a low-trust environment. Community engagement may be a possible solution to curb this issue and others.


As we discussed in another post on my blog, way too often, people from a different generation (say, Millennials) find themselves in a low-trust environment, where they feel invisible and disconnected, and where their value is perceived as depreciated due to their background (gender, age, previous experience. etc.). This is especially true for established industries that are run by older, “classical,” rules. Academia, banking, construction, and healthcare are just a few examples. If you are in such a context, you need mechanisms of selectivity and verification for choosing the right social capital strategy for navigating such a context.

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