Monday, October 5, 2009

Timely Tips for College Students You are a Beautiful Work in Progress!

You are a gorgeous Work In Progress... did you know that?      Think about the end result you wish to create and think about the experiences you wish to have along the way. You CAN make them happen.

There are many things you can do to increase the chances of finding a job with a good company once you graduate.   The ideas and actions that you start rolling now will be of help to you as you advance your network, your skills and your knowledge base.  Some college students feel great frustration, almost in a
"Catch 22" since they may not have work experience and all the jobs appear to ask for some sort of work experience.   How are you supposed to get work experience if no one will give you that first job?

Yikes..... this can be frustrating until you understand that you can create some of your own great job experiences and future references by your volunteering and community activities.   Get smart about using volunteer opportunities to serve not only your community, your hoby or social interests but also your career.   Start Volunteering for strategic opportunities with people and projects that will give you related experience or contacts!

Here are  more tips on what to do to increase your chances of  getting called back on interviews and landing offers:

(1) Work or intern for a company in an industry related to your area of interest / college major

You can gain work experience in college either through jobs or internships. Internships are great because they allow you to try out different work environments and types of work so you have a good idea of the type of job you want to obtain once you graduate. The relevant work experience you gain through internships or volunteer opportunities will give you something to put on your resume and will make you more of an asset to a company compared to other graduates who may have great GPAs but lack work experience. Ideally, the company you intern for will offer you a job once you graduate, if not your supervisor will at least serve as a good reference. While it may be tempting to make more money bar-tending or in a retail job, participating in unpaid or low paid jobs/internships gives you relevant work experience which is the key to finding a job once you graduate. It is much better to be an intern when you are a college student instead of interning once you graduate because you can’t find a decent job due to lack of relevant work experience.

(2) Get involved in leadership roles in college clubs/organizations

Build your skills and contacts by being involved.  "Act like a HOST, not like a guest" is what noted career coach, Dr. Adele Scheele tells people in her books, Making College Pay Off and   Skills for Success.
You should also get involved in leadership roles in clubs and organizations on campus. Companies like to see that you have developed leadership skills in college so these experiences will definitely be something you can include on your resume.

(3) Utilize your college career center to find jobs/internships and to practice interviews

Your college career center has many resources to offer. Not only do they assist you in finding jobs and internships both while you are in school and once you graduate, but they also will conduct practice job interviews . This will help you feel more comfortable and know what to expect when you go in for an actual job interview. Often expert resources come and make presentations or make themselves available for mentoring of students.  Take advantage of this practice and of this chance to build your network.

(4) Attend college career fairs

Please  attend career fairs when your school hosts them.  You will expand your network and you will have the opportunity to speak with companies who are hiring new grads in your area.    This is a great start to getting your resume out there for your job search and a chance to get in person feedback and meet referral sources.

No one can truly predict when the economy will turn around but YOU CAN create more and better opportunities for yourself by making some strategic decisions about your volunteer and intern work.   Each professional connection can open doors for you later in life.
   Best of luck to you 

  Patty De

1 comment:

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