Frustration looms across the class of 2020, as virtually all graduation ceremonies were conducted…well…virtually. Students and families cherish the idea of walking across the stage to receive one’s college diploma and it often serves as motivation during late-night sessions in the library. The class of 2020 may have missed out on the Pomp and Circumstance, but the education earned is not discounted.
While this year’s graduating class had an unconventional conclusion, the “real-world” challenges of starting a career await. Here are a few tips for conducting a fruitful job search in-between episodes of your favorite bingeable show.
- Make sure your resume and cover letter are up to date. It feels great changing “expected graduation” to “graduated,” and now is the time to start cutting school-related accomplishments. Your resume should consist of mostly industry-specific experience like internships and published work. The sooner you can present your degree as a “checked box” and not the pinnacle of achievement, the more competitive you’ll be in the modern job market.
- Cast a wide net. Job hunting is like your college search. You might remember writing down your top three or five schools and applying to them all. Even if one job seems perfect, it never hurts to have options.
- Look for a good fit. The relationship between an employee and his or her job is a two-way street. Before accepting a position, ask yourself if you can imagine working there for over a year. The time for hopping between internships and part-time jobs is over. A post-collegiate resume should show loyalty and competence. An inability to commit to or keep a job will bode poorly for future opportunities.
These tips can boost your efforts, but ultimately it will come down to your ability to recognize opportunities and make the most of them.
It’s important to remember, graduating college doesn’t mean your education is over. The critical thinking skills acquired through 16 years of school have prepared you to adapt to new challenges.
On day one, you will not know everything you need to become an extraordinary success. Humble yourself in reality, ask for help, and enjoy the path to becoming the professional you want to be.