The bottom line is that college is full of distractions. There are parties, friends, and events surrounding you 24/7. Upon first entering, you may find yourself forming an immediate circle of friends, establishing a routine, staying in your comfort zone and essentially going through the motions of attending lectures and doing homework. With that type of lifestyle, you’re making yourself vulnerable to losing motivation and focus of college’s main goal: landing a job.
And to no one’s surprise, one of the biggest stressors of college students is the uncertainty of whether or not they are qualified and experienced enough to be hired after graduating. Absolutely no one wants to attend college for (x) amount of years and pay tons of money for an education only to not have a job after all the hard work! To avoid having those feelings of angst, we’ve made a list that will not only prepare you but also put you ahead of the game. Check out these ways to increase your chances of landing a job after graduation.
1. Network, Network, Network!
Networking is by far the most important step to landing a job. I’m sure we’ve all heard the saying “Sometimes it’s not about what you know, it’s who you know.” Well, time and time again, that sentiment has proven to be true!
Your relationships play a vital role in not only your ability to land a job but also generally the hiring process at most places overall. Having references can work wonders. Noting that you have a friend(s) who work or previously worked for the company you’re applying to will have you favored above other potential candidates, and it’ll allow you to get your foot in the door just about every time! Just remember, your references are basically vouching for you, so make sure to always put forth quality work and effort.
Realistically, the networking process can begin your first day of college. To do so, just get out there. Talk to people. Surround yourself with like-minded individuals who are pursuing the same area of study as you. Get connected and foster relationships that will add value to your life.
2. Join Clubs and Organizations
On-campus clubs and organizations directly correlate to landing a job in the fact that they serve as an excellent resume builder. Joining them offers you the opportunity of getting involved on campus, learning more about your peers/community, and most of the time, doing activities for a good cause! Adding those types of feats to your resume tells employers, “Hey, I can effectively demonstrate team building and leadership skills. I can work together to get things done.”
Also, to build upon our last point, this is a perfect networking opportunity as well! Most times, the students in these organizations joined with the same intent; to add it to their resume. Neighboring peers who likely have similar goals and aspirations of working towards their future is right where you want to be!
3. Get To Know Your Professors
Be advised: this step in the process is catered more for students taking upper division courses (classes within their major); however, it is often overlooked. A lot of students just want to get on their professor’s good side so they can get bumped up to an A at the end of the semester if need be.
You should be thinking beyond just that when it comes to your professors. Think long-term. More times than not, your professors are extremely knowledgeable and already experienced within the very field you are trying to get into. They already have the connections you’re seeking and could guide you in the right direction. You may even have a good word put in for you if you play your cards right!
To show your professors you mean business, always remain respectful. Show a genuine interest in the material you’re learning. Be professional. Ask questions. If possible, stay after class or visit during their office hours and ask questions about your major’s industry. Don’t just tell them how determined you are of landing a job, show them!
In an employer’s eyes, internships are probably the most valuable aspect of your resume. It shows them you’ve gotten a taste of working within the industry already and have developed some of the skills needed to perform the tasks that will be expected of you.
Apply and complete as many of these as possible! The more the merrier. The more experience within the field you have, the easier things will be for you after successfully landing a job.
5. Apply Until Your Fingers Break
If you’ve followed all of the previously mentioned steps up until this point, you very well may have jobs calling you with job offers after graduation!
But if that’s not the case, getting your resume out there is an absolute must. Without doing so, all of the effort you’ve put in your entire college career will be essentially be pointless. Find companies/jobs you’d feel comfortable working for and apply to as many of them as possible!
The worst thing they could tell you is no, and even so, don’t let that discourage you. Be patient and play the numbers game; someone is going to come through eventually! Each “no” is only one step closer to your first “yes” and the success of landing a job!