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Are you looking to get a job after college? I know that a fear for college students is is trying to get a job after graduation. And it is a legitimate fear. You are an adult, you may have invested all this money into college, you may want to move out of your parents home, and a good job is the way to do that. I am sure that you can get a job but it can be hard to pay all of your bill working a minimum wage job for only 10 hours a week. That may barely even pay your cell phone bill.
One of the biggest struggles college grads face is how to find a job after college. A growing trend is that those who are college educated are having trouble finding meaningful employment. It is not that a college education is less in demand, because a bachelor’s degree is like the new high school diploma in this day and age.
It is that many employers are starting to want education AND experience. For many college graduates they find themselves working in an unrelated field just to find a job AND are often underpaid (Click here to read my blog on what to if you are underpaid). As a result when they graduate it is hard to compete in a job market against other candidates.
BUT fear not, I have the right actionable tips for you that will help you find a job after college. That you can start implementing that will get you a good paying job after you graduate. The key to landing a good job after graduation is that you have to start preparing for your career as soon as possible. Ideally, the sooner you prepare yourself the better chance you have of landing a really good job after graduation.
And the more of these habits you do it is pretty much guaranteed that you are going to get a job. Also consider checking out my video where I show you how to find a great paying job even with no experiance and don’t forget to subscribe to my YouTube channel.
1. Getting A Job After College Get The Job Before You Graduate
To land a great job after college try getting your hands wet while getting a job before you graduate. Let me explain. You cannot major in the fashion field and then get a job in fast food and think this is going to be your gateway to getting a job after you graduate, not unless you want to design their work uniforms. The key is working a job in the field that you want to go in. It may be a low level job or even a receptionist position.
But the main point is to get your foot in the door at a company that you would want to work at after you graduate. So you may not qualify for the position you want until you have a degree but you may qualify for a lower level positions where no degree is required. There are two main points of doing this. First, is that you are trying to get experience.
This will come in handy so that even if you do not land a job at that company after you graduate, at least you can put the experience and their name on your resume. And the second is to get to know the people who work there and if you do a good job then they may just offer you a full time position in the area that your degree is in. There are three ways you can do this.
2. How To Find A Job After College By Having A Job Before College
A. Find a job on your own
Make a list of the companies in your area that you would like to work for when you graduate and start looking at their open positions that you qualify for and get a job there. Easy right? Click here for tips on the best ways to search for just about any job you want.
B. Work Study
I talked about work study on my “how to fund your college” blog (click here to read). Work-study is typically awarded through financial aid. It is where the college assigns you a job, typically in the field you want to study, and you get paid minimum wage or close to. The pro is that you get some type of money as oppose to no money. But the key here is not the money but the exposure and experience you can get from a work study job. A con can be that work-study job are not always in the field you want to study depending on the college and if they can place you.
Which if they place you at in the school dining hall and you are not studying culinary, then that is a pointless work-study and will not help you career wise. The key to getting a good job in your field after college is you want experience in the field you want to go into. Therefore, this can be a hit or miss. But most of the time they will try to place you somewhere that is beneficial to you and close to your major. Which is why it is important to know the field you want to work in early on and speak to your college adviser about it.
An internship can come in several ways. The first is that there are often several companies that are hiring for interns. In these situations, you will be responsible for finding and applying for these on your own. Your college may have a career center or website to announce these opportunities.
The other option is that your college can also place you with an internship that is within your field as well, which is the easier process. An internship can be either paid or unpaid. The unpaid part is obviously the con of an internship. But a pro is that often companies hire their interns on after they graduate. The reason is because they are invested in you.
They have trained you and you know how things work. So why hire someone else when they can just hire you! Also as an additional tidbit, many internship occur over the summer or over school breaks. Consider those as well. And the only way this is going to work is that if you actually do a good job while working at the organization. If you suck, they are not going to want to offer you anything.
3. Getting A Job After College Get Experiance By Volunteering
The best way to getting a job after college is to have experiance and to know people. Volunteering can bring you a number of opportunities. I am sure this is common sense but you do not get paid for volunteering. But what you can get out of it is invaluable and those are connections. AKA people who can get you a job. The key to volunteering is you want to volunteer with organizations that are in your field.
While volunteering you want to be social, work hard, and stand out. If people who work for the organization see that you are in college and that you have a great work ethic they are more likely to want to hire you. So don’t just sit in the corner not talking to anyone.
You want to meet people. You want to meet people that can give you a job. Its like the internship. Why hire a stranger, when you have been volunteering for them? They would rather hire someone they know that is familiar with their process and organization over someone who is not. Even if a volunteering company does not hire you, this is experience in the field that you can always put on your resume (Check out my blog on writing a killer resume) which is also enhances your chances of getting a job after you graduate.
4. How To Find A Job After College ~ Do Some Networking
In college it can be beneficial to join certain sororities, fraternities, clubs on campus, and go to events; especially those that are geared toward your major. Many Sororities and Fraternities are not just about partying. They often have keynote speakers come and speak to the group and they often stay connected with alumnae Greek members that own their own business or are supervisors at organizations and are just dying to give jobs to other members of their organization. The same can go for clubs.
In my master’s program. I was a member of the National Counseling Honor Society. As a member, I was invited to events in my field and certain opportunities were afforded to members of the organization. You want to attend these events so that you can meet people who can give you a job. It should go without saying to make sure that you look professional and that you get around and talk to people, the only way people want to work with you is if they get to know you.
And once again during this process, if you don’t meet someone who can give you a job you will still have some impressive stuff to put on your resume and even applications. Many job applications asked if you a member of a professional organization. For example, my resume would really stand out by being a member of the National Counseling Honor Society (a nationally recognized organization in the field of counseling) over someone who isn’t.
5. Getting A Job After College ~ What to Do In Your Last Year in College
Getting a job after college is not just a one step thing. Implementing the first tips is just the starting point but there are also things that you can do in your last year of college that will really increase your chances of getting a good job. During your last year you want to:
- Build and portfolio. This may not be true for all majors. But if you are in art, graphic design, or fashion design when you go interviews they are going to want to see your body of work. You want to start collecting some of the best work that you did in school or create your own work to build your portfolio that way you can start taking them on interviews with you..
- Start researching jobs. Research jobs in your area and in other areas. See where people are really doing well in your major. For example, I live in the DC area. And having a public health degree or even a political science degree can be very valuable here because it is focused on government and politics, increasing your chances of getting good job. Would the same degree be as valuable in the middle of no where. Probably not. So it may be possible that you have to relocate to find a better job. And securing a job before you move or having a plan to move to the areas where the job opportunities are better, are also key to landing a good job.
- Reach out to your contacts. All the contacts that you made from the ways above. Reach out to them, send them your resume to see if they are hiring. Talk to the organizations you volunteer for, internships or work and express your plans to stay with them long term after you graduate. You want to talk about a full time job, with benefits, and a salary.
- Start applying for jobs. Believe it or not, it takes a long time to get a job. Many jobs will allow you to apply if you are about to graduate. I would say start doing this in your last 6-9 months. Because it can take a while for the interview process to start and they can always keep your information on file when you graduate. It is better to be safe than sorry.
Okay that is all the information I have that will teach you how to find a job after college. I am confident that through following these steps, you will not be an unemployed college graduate for long and good luck to finding a job after graduation.