Before my graduation, I did not have everything planned out. I was just there for the ride, and by the time my second semester of senior year came around, I was panicked. So that you don’t have to go through the lessons that I did, I am here to share some tips on how you can be prepared for life after college.
Take Advantage of Your Resources
Find your career services center and schedule meetings with a counselor during your last year. If you are junior, I would start that process now. When it comes to utilizing your resources, the sooner the better, but if graduation is around the corner for you, do so now. Your career service center can help put you on the right track to finding jobs that are suitable to your strengths. I know when I went, my counselor gave me job ideas that I didn’t even think of.
There are also jobs fairs that can allow for potential employers to meet you and you an establish a relationship through that. Find all of the services at your college to help you with your transition. Believe me, it is as beneficial for your school as it is for you to be successful after graduation, so make the most of their resources while you still can.
Establish relationships with your professors
You might think that once you graduate, there would be no need for you to maintain the relationships you made with your professors, but that is not true. Your professors hold a wealth of knowledge and their guidance will be beneficial as you go through your future endeavors.
If you are considering going back to school at some point, having at least one recommendation from a professor would look nice. There was a student my professor would use to make this very point. The student graduated at least five years prior and wanted to go back to school. They asked my professor for a recommendation, but they could not offer one because they could barely remember who that student was.
What’s after that?
Congratulations if you are not a short term thinker, I was not one of you. Before my graduation, I thought it was only necessary to think two steps ahead. Whenever someone asked me, “Well, what are you going to do after that?” I panicked. I didn’t know, and from experience, not knowing only gets worse when you graduate.
Once you graduate, you have the pressure of needing to make decisions about your future quickly and without the security of being in school. It is important to research what people in your field can do with their degrees and the long term career paths that you can take. This is especially important for humanities degrees that are more open ended.
As terrible as it is, jobs want applicants that have experience, but you need to work to have experience. With this dilemma, the best route is to intern. As an intern, you will receive the necessary experience required for many jobs, and it is a great idea to look for internships while still in school. It shows employers that you were able to split your time effectively and have some sort of understanding of the workforce. Also, the sooner you gain experience, the sooner you can start your career.
Graduation should a time where you are excited about your future rather than dreading the next few months. Many of my friends had no idea what they were going to do when they graduated, neither did I, and it made graduation extremely stressful, so I hope that these tips can help you along your journey.