Boldness and Curiosity: How I got 5 awesome jobs with that combo (Part 3)

Elissa Teal Watson
2 min readNov 4, 2021

In Part 2, I shared how boldness and curiosity got me a job offer as an academic advisor at a local college.

I didn’t share yesterday that that job was actually a part-time academic advising job. I still loved it, but, because it wasn’t full-time, I didn’t have a full-time salary. And I had a lot of college loan debt. I decided to join the US Army, in large part, to get my student loans paid off.

Then I got married, was honorably discharged from the Army, and moved to Maryland with my then-husband. Then 9/11 happened and he had to go overseas for a long time.

I moved back home to Ohio to stay with my dad while my then-husband was away.

I chose to get temporary jobs in the area through a temp agency. I had no long term plan for employment because I imagined that I would return to Maryland when my then-husband came home.

As luck would have it, the temp agency placed me as the temporary receptionist for a 2-month stint in the Dean’s office in the College of Business at The University of Toledo.

I got along superbly with the Dean and his staff.

The Director of Undergrad Advising had to take a medical leave and I shared with the Dean that I had academic advising experience.

Long story short: I offered to fill in as a temporary academic advisor in the Undergrad Office. They agreed and so I served there.

Then, the sole academic advisor in the MBA Office put in notice that she was leaving for a different job.

I applied for her job. I was 1 of 3 finalists and the only one without a Master’s degree. But I got the job! And it was so wonderful to work there. I truly loved going to work every day and serving the students.

What’s the take away? Listen for opportunities and don’t be afraid to speak up and have a conversation, even if you think that they might say no. They might say yes!



Elissa Teal Watson

I write about mindset, emotional intelligence, self-care, productivity, habits, career, and relationship management.