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The opinions expressed in this article are the writer’s own and do not reflect the views of Her Campus.
This article is written by a student writer from the Her Campus at Illinois chapter.

When I was a Freshman, I thought I had the process of getting a job all figured out: I would get internships every summer and then receive an amazing job offer after graduation. It was a nice, perfect path in my head. Did I actually know the steps I needed to take in order to get there? Not really. I just figured everything would work itself out. Although there is some truth to that, the reality is I had to put in the work. Here are some tips I’ve gathered on how to get started: 

1. Go to that career fair

You probably hear this advice all the time, but for good reason. Career fairs are so valuable for gaining experience speaking with professionals. Even if you’re not sure what exact position you are looking for, figure out when the next career fair is at your school, find a few companies that are of interest to you, and make it a point to go speak with those recruiters. It will be scary speaking to them the first few times, but eventually you gain a rhythm. You learn so much by putting yourself in that environment that no article or book can provide you; the experience is invaluable.

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2. Scroll through LinkedIn and Handshake

If you don’t already have a LinkedIn or Handshake account, make one and start scrolling on the “Jobs” tab. Look at the different positions that are available, their descriptions, and you’ll start finding ones that interest you. Look more closely at the ones that catch your eye and notice the skills you have or may not have. Keep building as many of these skills as you can as you continue throughout your academic career, but don’t worry if you can’t get them all: this is only one portion of landing a job. 

3. Have multiple resumes

Chances are, you have more than one career you’d like to apply to. That’s perfect, now you just need to have a resume for each one. This is very important because you need to make sure your resume has the keywords and skills they are looking for. I recommend having the exact job description open and tailoring your resume to that. Since it’s a general rule to keep your resume to only one page, this may mean you will have to pick and choose what will end up on that page and what won’t. This will probably take quite a bit of time to perfect, so don’t try to do it all in one day.

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The journey to landing an internship and then a job is one that contains many variables, and honestly one of the hardest parts is simply starting. I hope these tips provide at least some assistance and eases some anxieties. Good luck, and happy job hunting!

Daniyah Hashmi

Illinois '25

Hi, my name is Daniyah (pronounced Dahn-ya) and I'm a Sophomore at the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign! I'm a dual degree student majoring in Brain & Cognitive Science and Information Sciences. I've always loved journaling as a hobby, so I figured I'd join Her Campus to hone in on my writing skills and become a more confident writer!