Author: Samantha Duffy
So you have filled out the graduation application and the thought alone of being done with school probably has you more excited than a female who just found out “50 Shades of Grey” was becoming a movie. What’s important to remember though is that just because school is done doesn’t mean the work is. It is time to put all the countless hours of studying and paper writing to use and find a job; but, where do you start?
Well first let’s get one thing straight, just because you have a degree does not guarantee you a job. That may not be the easiest pill to swallow considering the price of tuition today, but the truth is that a lot of people have degrees now, and a lot of those people want a job just like you. This does not mean your chances of landing a career is out of your reach, it just means you have to know how to apply. Here are a few tips that can help you in your quest to achieving success after college.
Now is not the time to rest on you laurels, you need to really be going after these jobs. It is not possible to apply for too many jobs; in the words of Forrest Gump, job hunting is “like a box of chocolates, you never know what you’re gonna get”. You may not hear back from a lot of the places you apply to, but don’t let that get you down, chances are someone is going to pick your application.
Don’t completely rely on the Internet.
The internet is a great way to apply for jobs because there are tons of postings, and it is relatively quick and easy. Keep in mind that it means thousands of graduates are applying this way too, so that makes your application a minnow in an ocean. Make your application stand out by making connections within the company and networking your way in.
Create a wide network.
Do not limit yourself to friends and family when it comes to building your network. Reach out to anyone that you think might be helpful in your search for a job- it can be your childhood camp counselor, a troop leader, even an old teacher you really loved. You never know where there could be a connection to a future career. In addition to reaching out to these people, maintain a decent relationship with them too. Having a diverse list of references when applying for a job is a good thing; it helps employers get a better understanding of who you are in all types of environments.
This one is a biggie for graduates today. Giving off a professional vibe is more than putting on a suit and covering up your tattoos, it means social media. If you think your employer is not looking at your Facebook, Twitter and Instagram you are sadly mistaken. Now is the time to clear out your social media websites; use the three B’s system- no beers, bongs or bikinis.
Don’t set your expectations too high.
This is like the first-time home buyer; chances are you won’t get everything you ever dreamed of. Your first job is just the beginning, you have to work your way up to the job of your dreams, just like everyone else has to. Michael Jordan didn’t just pick up a basketball one day and become a legend, he had to work for his success, and so do you.
You don’t ask someone out on a date and then never call them with a follow up plan. Same goes for job hunting. Submit your application and then follow up, it shows initiative and puts your name in their minds.
Take it seriously.
Too many people do not understand the seriousness of finding a job. Make sure your resume is creative and reflects YOUR skills, not the templates you got offline. Know your strengths and weaknesses, and do your best to improve those areas that aren’t as strong. Being serious also means being prepared for an interview. This isn’t a job at your local Taco Bell; the questions are going to be a lot more in depth and require more personal information, so do your research and really get to know who you are and what you have to offer the world.
Use your college’s career center.
This one is not on here just because we are the Career Center. The office helps students find the right network contacts, teaches useful job search tactics, and gives information on how to improve your resume, cover letter, and LinkedIn profile. Make note: The Career Center does NOT find a job for you, nor do we write the resume for you. Our job is to help prepare you for a job, not do everything for you. Use the tools and information you get here to start conducting your search on your own.
Take this advice into consideration and don’t hesitate to start working on your job search right away. You do not have to be a graduate to find your future job, you just have to know what you want and then go after it.
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