The first thing on everyone’s mind after college – how to get that dang job. You’re usually only given 6 months until your loans start kicking down your door, are you ready for the time crunch? Most people are not and use that 6 months to “take time away” and relax from the college grind. The problem with relaxing, there is a big chance you never get back to that grind mentality.
You should take charge during this little bit of time and really start your career off by using your first job to start a savings before your loans hit. Keep in mind it may not be your dream job right out of the gate, most people don’t hit their dream job for several years after.
Your College Should Have Assistance
Something a lot of students don’t know or realize is that many colleges offer career fairs or job placement assistance. It’s what they use to “keep their numbers high” when they advertise they have a 90%+ job placement. They want you to get a job and they want you to succeed – why not take advantage? You should have a career advisor or counselor that can help walk you through the process and help you build career goals. They’ll even help you write a resume and cover letter too if you need it.
Build Up Your Network
This is something everyone forgets to do as a teenager, in college, or even in the workplace. Every person you meet is a chance to network and build your network, this is arguably one of the best ways to land a job – and it’s usually a job you’ll actually like. You can start your networking in college by: taking advantage of your career advisor at college, actively engage with your professors and classmates, schedule extra time to review with your professors or lab techs, take advantage of being mentored by graduates, or even using a site like Linkedin to find people just like you.
Throw As Many Lines Out as You Can
Don’t just select a few big companies to apply to, you should really try to have at least 15-20 that you’ve applied to, if not more. You can often volunteer at local organizations or even national ones to build experience. Make sure you follow up with all of these applications.
Be Prepared with Your Resume and Cover Letter
You always want to have your resume and cover letter ready to go at a moments notice. You never know who you will meet when you’re networking or even in class. You may come across someone and have to do an elevator pitch right then and there. It’s best to practice and be up to speed on your interests, goals, and skills to impress. You should never have a “one size fits all” resume or cover letter. These should be 100% custom made for each position you’ve applied for. You need to modify your resume to match the job requirements for the job you’re applying for as much as possible.
Seek an Internship
You usually won’t land a job at Google or Facebook without an internship, prior experience, or some cool project you’ve done before that caught their attention. An internship is often how many get their start in the fields they’ve gone to school for and many actually end up working for the company they’ve interned at. This is one of the most effective ways to landing that first job – the best part is you can start an internship usually your sophomore year.
Stay Motivated While Searching
Finding a job is hard. You are under a time crunch and you’re probably having your parents hound you to get that job. It sucks but it’s something everyone has to do. No one truly likes the job hunt and it is very draining emotionally. You should practice healthy life habits like eating well, exercise, sleeping enough, and other interests that take your mind away from the grind.