The unofficial guide to help those end of the semester overload – spring fever infested – senioritis suffering students get motivation to move on with their lives and do what they came to college to do: Get a job.
It’s that time of year again where everything is blooming, and it’s not entirely miserable to walk to class. It feels nice out, and the quad looks gorgeous. You didn’t have to wear so many layers that you were provoked to strip the minute you got to class. It’s Spring. And not only is it Spring, but also it’s the Spring of your senior year. Spring break has come to a sudden end, and it’s time to shape up with what little time you have left. Seven weeks is the only thing standing between you and true adulthood. While your younger friends are planning their summer vacations, it’s time to figure out what your next step is, because let’s be honest, you didn’t think this day would come, or at least you never thought about the transitioning period.
So what is a girl to do when the mixers and study sessions come to a halt and you’re staring down the barrel of adulthood? Get a job.
Some people make this sound super easy, as if you should be able to put on those heels that make you feel like you run the world, walk right into the business of your choosing, and get the office and salary you feel you deserve as an upcoming vital asset.
SPOILER ALERT: It’s not happening.
This realization leads many students to graduate school. Not that more degrees are a bad thing by any means. But once students see the competition and limited job opportunities, they feel the need and desire to become more competitive or specialize more in a specific career. If this is you, that’s awesome! Look at graduate programs. Apply for a graduate assistant position to get school paid for and get those extra credentials. Come back to this article when you’re done, and we can talk again.
But for the rest of you, grab a venti mocha, and let’s get to work.
Step 1: Review your resume. Make a couple of versions of it based on the job descriptions you are looking for, and make sure to utilize similar language from the job descriptions in your resume. Have a professional in the field review it or take it to your university’s Career and Planning Development office to get their input.
Step 2: Decide what you need. Are you looking to work in a particular kind of place? Do you have a set minimum salary you are willing to accept? What other variables are playing a part in your life that could require your time and attention? Can you handle a 9-5, or do you need something a little more unconventional? Decide these things and then decide how flexible you are willing to be with them.
Step 3: Start applying. Most companies post job listings on sites like Indeed or Glassdoor. There are lots of sites like this; just get to googling! Also, update that LinkedIn account you had to make for that one business class freshman year and never touched afterward. It’s a great way to foster the connections you have and find job openings you would be interested in. Reach out to your networks. If you know people in the field through personal connections or previous internships, ask around. If your reputation precedes you well, then this is a quick way to get your name into the final-list-of-applicants stack.
Step 4: Follow up. Call the organizations you apply to and visit them. Put a face and personality with the name and the resume. Make yourself stand out. Once you do get an interview, write a thank you letter or email afterward to thank the interviewer for their time and consideration. Handwritten letters are a personal favorite. However, depending on the nature of the company, an email might be best. Use your best judgement and you’ll be fine!
Step 5: Be patient and persistent. When you don’t get immediate replies and six job offers in the next week, do not get discouraged. Keep applying. Keep trying. Don’t settle for less than what you want in this world. Sure, you might need to take something to get the bills and loans paid, but don’t get stuck there. Push through the disappointments of coming up empty, and know you are valuable and will be a great addition to the right company.
Your time is coming. Your time is here.
Get excited about the things that await you in this world, and put on the heels that remind you that you run it. Let your passions shine, and your work will speak for itself. In the wise words of Dr. Seuss, “Kid, you’ll move mountains,” so go get a job.