For something a little different, here is a guest post from Jessica Socheski offering tips for your student to build a good foundation in college for future career success.
During this process, many new grads find themselves at an impasse with their future careers because employers are hesitant to hire inexperienced, fresh-out-of-school candidates. While students might hold a degree signifying their extensive knowledge of an area, if they do not have any relevant experience, employers tend to avoid what they perceive as a risk and look elsewhere.
In order to avoid joining the ranks of unemployed graduates with student debt piling up, it is critical for students who are still in college to begin building their resumes now. Here are some tips for finding real world experience to help set you apart.
Finding a job in college that fits into your academic schedule can take a bit of finagling. But the challenge will prove well worth the effort in the end because students who can secure a position applicable to their intended field will have a great start on their future career.
Depending upon a student’s major and future goals, there are various areas to look for relevant work experience. On or off campus most colleges provide positions for students or offer information about available jobs in the community.
For example, prospective medical students should consider finding work in a hospital while still in school. Many volunteer positions make this possible, or students can earn their certification to work an actual hospital job. Most med schools require numerous hospital hours, thus working in a hospital before reaching your program will provide relevant experience as well as compensation.
As another example, communication majors might find working for a PR firm or finding an on-campus position dealing with admissions will give them a leg up on their resumes.
Internships are another key piece in preparing a job catching resume. And internships can be profitable for both college students and recent graduates waiting for a job to turn up. Most companies love interns and have positions available each semester specially designed for interns.
Internships can be either paid or unpaid, and many schools have an internship class where the student receives unit credit when a professor sets up an internship for them.
Usually, if an internship is for credit, it is unpaid. However, the benefit is instead of taking a full course load and trying to squeeze in time for an internship, students have one less physical class to attend allowing that time to be used for the internship.
Additionally, professors have great resources students can take advantage of. Because of their position in higher education, professors can find their students hard-to-come-by opportunities such as interning for a record company, publishing firm, a movie studio, or other high profile industry professional. Many of these fields are difficult to break into, and the experience working under someone in that field will impact future careers.
Having volunteer experience shows initiative and passion. Though volunteering means work without monetary compensation it does prove rewarding in a number of important ways such as:
•Building meaningful relationships, contacts and references
•Demonstrates your commitment and character to future employers
•Provides useful skills
•Can teach leadership
Volunteer experience on a resume shows that the student is a committed person willing to sacrifice time to make a difference. Employers will appreciate a student’s initiative to volunteer.
Students who are conscious about building their resumes now will have a tremendous advantage when looking for their first job after college. Utilizing the resources offered in college will help provide experience and create an important network of connections to fall back on later. Though the college years are already full, it is never too early to start preparing for the future.
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