So, You Want to Find a Job?
As the spring semester quickly approaches, I was reflecting back to my last semester in college and just how stressful the job search can be. In order to help y’all become better prepared for the job hunt, I made a few calls to some of my Omega Delta Brothers that work in recruiting to ask for the best advice that they give undergrads starting their job search. These are two different perspectives out of the many out there. Without further ado, here’s what you came here for:
Top Five Job Hunting Tips from Kyle Brewer, ΩΔ ‘08
1. Start Early
You’ve all heard about getting internships. Regardless of how many/few you’ve had, start applying for work earlier. As a recruiter, January and May are flooded with new graduates, so you’re giving yourself more competition than you need. Start applying to jobs and going to your school’s career services around 3-4 months before graduating. You may not get a bite, but even networking and getting used to interviewing will help prepare you for life outside of school.
In short- plan and be prepared.
2. Be Realistic
Many undergrads, including myself then, think their degree will get them that $60k job from the start. While some may be lucky, the large majority will have to start much lower than they realize. Be prepared to live the same frugal life you did as an undergrad for a while.
3. Grad school is great, but you will still need to be realistic.
Many undergrads, again including myself then, will think going straight to grad school will give them an even larger return on their investment in education. The truth is, everyone is getting graduate degrees these days, so you will still need to work from the ground up. Companies look for work experience THEN your degree. The person with a Bachelors and five years experience will get picked almost every time over the Masters degree with none.
4. Liberal arts or social sciences degree? That NGO or nonrofit job can be hard to come by.
Unless you’re in a major city or have interned with your dream organization, most NGO’s and non-profits pay very little to their junior employees. Most of you with these degrees will end up working a job that has nothing directly to do with your major for the first couple years or even longer.
5. It may be difficult, but enjoy it.
You’re at a point where, though the pay is awful, you have an opportunity to seek out the career you want, the place you want to be, and the life you want to live. Don’t let it bog you down too much. This is one of the few times in life where you can be selfish and be fully about yourself and your goals.
Top Four Hints from Corey Callahan, ΩΔ ‘08
1. Proofread, proofread, proofread.
Resumes, cover letters, emails – any written correspondence – is an indicator of your attention to detail, and it’s the only opportunity you have to make a first impression.
2. Don’t sell yourself short.
Are you serving the Alpha or another organization in a leadership role? Be sure to provide these details on your resume. You know that there’s more to your duties than just the title. This is an opportunity to showcase it.
3. Utilize your school’s career services team!
These offices exist to help you in a number of ways. In addition to traditional offerings like access to employers and resume help, the staff also usually has extensive networks and can often times help you on a more personalized level. It’s not unheard of for a staff member to put you in touch with people who might currently be doing something you’re interested in.
4. Do your research.
If you make it to the point where you’re able to talk to a representative from a company you’re interested in, be sure to know what you’re talking about. Company websites have a ton of information and a little knowledge of the organization’s product or service can go a long way.
For those of you still in the hunt, be sure to check out the Alpha Visitor Application!