HR Generalist Expands Her Network with Two Extension Certificates


- Priyanka Redhu

Term : April, 2013
Department : Business and Management
Program : Marketing

When Priyanka Redhu moved to California in 2010, she already had completed her M.B.A. and started her career in human resource management in India. As an HR generalist, she had spent a few years recruiting top talent for one of India’s largest banks. When her husband accepted a job in Silicon Valley, she wanted to find a way to translate her skills and experience for an American company. She contacted UCSC Extension’s International Program staff to enroll in the Human Resource Management Certificate program.

Redhu says that the decision to get certified in Silicon Valley was as much about developing strategies to adapt to the American workforce culture as it was building knowledge in recruitment, talent acquisition and marketing.

“The theories are the same worldwide, but the practical experience and the knowledge, plus meeting classmates who had various levels of experience, helped develop my self-confidence,” she says. “The program made me feel that yes, I can blend into the organization culture, and the work culture.”

Extension’s HR Management program offered useful approaches to staffing and operations that resonated with Redhu. She says that much of Extension’s appeal, in addition to its Silicon Valley reputation, were the networking opportunities. As an HR professional, she understood the need to connect not just with potential coworkers and employers, but with the overarching workforce culture. All in all, the Human Resource Management certificate program was great practice for her.

“In India, I was just working with Indians,” she says. “Here, you work with different people from different nationalities to understand how the culture communicates and how we understand each other. In almost all of my classes, we do group projects and group assignments. It’s not just about the technical knowledge but also behavioral competencies, like how to behave in a group, your teamwork, your integrity, how honest you are to your group members. These are critical skills.”

While completing her course work, Redhu decided to add a further credential to her resume by pursuing a Marketing Management Certificate. She sees the two fields as inextricably linked.

“You never talk about marketing, but marketing is missed when it’s not there,” she says. “It’s so important to understand how the business works, what your products are, what your competitive advantage is. As an HR person, you need to be knowledgeable. And marketing helps you understand those terminologies as to how you’re differentiated and how your brand is perceived.”

The Principles of Marketing course offered a strong foundation in the theories and approaches she hopes to employ at her next job. Redhu was especially focused on developing social media skills that she could use to connect employers and potential candidates. She took a few of Extension’s social media courses to learn ways to best take advantage of them.

“Social media is only a decade old,” she says. “People are scared to change. But if you really work on these platforms, they can help you a lot. Take the opportunity, when you come to UCSC Extension, to connect with people. At times people are looking for qualified candidates, and maybe you are sitting next to them.”

 While studying for her certificates, Redhu earned Extension credit for completing an internship with an online recruiting consultancy. Thanks to the skills she learned in her social media courses, she was able to successfully connect two candidates to their employers. She plans to complete both certificates in spring 2013 and is studying for the Professional in Human Resources certification exam.

 Visit our Human Resource Management and Marketing Management pages to learn about UCSC Extension’s unique offerings. For information on services and programs for international students, please visit our International Programs page. Browse upcoming HR Management and Marketing courses.

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