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Student success story: Elana Schloss

by | Apr 28, 2021

How one Pathstream student went from being furloughed to finding a new career with the Salesforce Administrator Career Certificate

Elana is a seasoned nonprofit and customer relationship management (CRM) professional, who has worked at a variety of organizations from the 92nd Street Y to the Food Bank of New York City. While it may seem like Elana has been using CRMs for years, she actually taught herself the basics of Salesforce in her first job out of college. Her curiosity and interest in growing her Salesforce skills led her to the Salesforce Administrator Career Certificate, which helped her upskill into the role she is in today.

Elana began her education by studying theatre and stage management. In search of a more stable career, she went on to pursue a masters in public administration and management at SUNY Binghamton in New York. Elana’s first job out of college was as an Executive Assistant at an arts council in New York City, where she was introduced to Salesforce, a CRM system, for the first time. She taught herself the basics of Salesforce on the job, and soon began to enjoy using it. She saw the potential in Salesforce to organize and manage relationships and fundraising efforts, but knew that she and her organization weren’t using the tool to its full potential.

After being furloughed in May of 2020 due to Covid-19, Elana began searching for ways to continue learning during the pandemic. She found the Salesforce Administrator Career Certificate and enrolled because of her curiosity in Salesforce, as well as the certificate’s alignment with the Salesforce Administrator Exam, an industry exam that would further distinguish her in the field of CRM.

“I feel like Salesforce will be the most commonly used database in the future if it isn’t already. I wanted to learn how to use it to its full potential.”

Elana enjoyed the Salesforce Trailhead modules she was able to complete in the Pathstream learning experience, the dedicated instructors, and the downloadable notes documents that helped her stay on track as she learned online. She was exposed to new CRM tools, like dashboards, which she felt would have been useful in her previous roles.

As Elana began to ramp up her job search, she added her certificate to her resume and cover letter and began seeing results with employers immediately. A month before officially completing her certificate, she landed a development job using CRM at the Food Bank of New York City.

“I was able to geek out with people I was interviewing with about Salesforce specific tools.”

While Elana had to teach herself the basics of Salesforce in her first job, her interest in the potential of the tool propelled her to pursue a certification where she could develop a deeper expertise. She is now bringing all that CRM has to offer to a mission-driven nonprofit.

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