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8 Tips to Land Your Dream Job (ft. The Career Center)

Nailing your dream career can seem scary, or sometimes even impossible, but it doesn’t have to be!

Hofstra has plenty of resources on campus to help you plan and prepare for your dream job. So, channel your inner Elle Woods when Warner doubted her ability to get into Harvard Law School and take advantage of all of Hofstra’s services right at your fingertips – you’ll have your dream career in no time! Here are 8 tips to help you get there.

Via Giphy.com

Take advantage of on-campus career counseling services.

Not sure what your dream job looks like? Or if you know exactly what you want to do, are you confused on how to get there? Hofstra has plenty of on-campus services that exist to help you determine what you want your career to be and help you prepare to actually get it.

How many times have you been to The Career Center on campus? Did you know they do more than just help you fix your resume or craft the perfect cover letter?

Darlene Johnson, Director of External Relations at The Career Center, says they do so much more than that. “Students often think that The Career Center is only a place to get resume help. While we do assist students with resume creation and updates, we are also career counselors who can help a student decide on a major or a career path.  Students do not have to be completely undecided to seek career counseling.  Sometimes, they just need to crystalize their career focus. For example, a student might know that she/he wants to pursue marketing, but not sure what sort of marketing or in what type of industry.” So, make yourself an appointment so you can start narrowing down your specific career goals so you can start working to achieve them!

Network like it’s your full-time job.

Believe it or not, networking starts the day you set foot on campus and never really stops! Your friends, classmates, professors, internships bosses, and co-workers all become part of your network – and as cliché it may sound, you really never know who will act as ~that~ connection between you and your dream job. Remember the importance of making genuine and meaningful connections all around campus, whether it be with fellow students, Career Center counselors, and professors. Don’t be afraid to ask to grab coffee with a professor to learn more about their professional career or get lunch with alumni who work at your dream company. Keep in touch with people and don’t be afraid to reach out if you have questions or want help – expanding your personal network is one of the best ways to work toward nabbing your dream job after graduation.  

Via Unsplash.com

Take advantage of sites like LinkedIn and Handshake.

If networking in person seems too daunting, start small. Staying active on websites like LinkedIn and Hofstra’s networking site Handshake will allow you to connect with professionals, build your personal brand and online portfolio, and start searching for internships and jobs. Creating an online database of connections will come in handy when you’re ready to start your job search!

Go to a career fair.

If you need a job, it’s practically a no-brainer that you should go to at least one career fair. Hofstra’s annual Spring Career Fair is approaching quickly! It will take place one week from today on March 28. Hofstra brings hundreds of employers to campus each semester so students can network, make connections, and network with professionals in an effort to land an internship or a full-time job. This semester’s fair will take place from 11 am – 2 pm in the David S. Mack Sports and Exhibition Complex – don’t forget to dress business professional and bring your resume! You never know if you’ll meet your future boss there.  

Via The Career Center at Hofstra. 

Research, research, research!

If you’ve never been to a career fair before, Johnson says the best thing you can do to prepare is research. Researching the companies that will be there is key! “We survey our career fair employers after each fair, and each semester they say that they wished students knew something about them when they approach the table.  While it’s not possible to be an expert on over 150 companies, review the list of companies ahead of time on Handshake and research your top ones.”

Practice your interviews.

Practice really does make perfect, and the only way to make sure you nail your dream job interview is to practice it! Know what you want to say, what experiences you want to highlight, and what skills you need to work on to really impress your interviewer.

“We offer practice interviews, which are a great way to prepare not just for an actual interview, but for any interaction with an employer,” said Johnson. “We record the interview and then we review it together with the student. This gives the student the opportunity to see for her/himself if they are doing things like saying ‘um’ too much or talking too much for one answer.”

Via Pexels.com

Attend as many career-focused events on campus as possible.

Can’t make it to the Spring Career Fair? Don’t sweat it – there are plenty of other events happening on campus all year long that touch on all types of career related topics. One upcoming event, which will be hosted by The Career Center, is the [email protected] event on April 17. “The [email protected] event is a great opportunity for student to learn about various issues of diversity in the workplace,” said Johnson. “Whether an intern or a full-time employee, students will have their own questions about issues such as accommodation, cultural awareness or coming out as LGBTQ+. We will be discussing these issues (and more!) with people working in various professions”

For more information about similar events on campus, check out The Career Center’s website to see all of their upcoming panels and workshops.

Via The Career Center at Hofstra. 

Get involved on and off campus to find what you’re truly passionate about.

Johnson says the best way to find your dream job is get involved so you actually know what you want to do. “Internships, shadowing programs and volunteer positions are great for finding out about a particular job. Our Pride Shadowing program gives students the opportunity to visit a workplace in their field of interest to see what a real ‘day in the life’ is like for someone doing the job that they want to do.  Not only that, but these experiences provide valuable networking opportunities and look great on a resume.”

What are you waiting for? It’s never too soon to get involved, get connected, and get prepared to land your dream career!  

Cover photo by Pexels.com

Sarah Hanlon is a senior at Hofstra University where she is pursuing a major in journalism. She almost always has an iced coffee in her hand, and she's an avid lover of online shopping, reality TV, and New York City. When she’s not researching all things Kate Middleton or reading lifestyle blogs, you can find her binge watching The Bachelor or writing about the latest pop culture, fashion and beauty trends. After college, she hopes to make a career out of her love for TV and style in New York. Follow her on Twitter or Instagram: sarahhanlon_.
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