How to Start your Career after College

This is it, your final semester of college. Senioritis is hitting hard, but you have to finish strong. In two months, you will have spring break. Toes in the sand, sun kissed skin, and a cold drink in your hand. This is not how you should be spending your spring break. You should be wearing your most professional outfit, walking into a corner office, smile on, shaking the hand of a CEO.

College seniors want their last piece of freedom, or spring break, to be just that, free. In reality, they should be acting like adults and looking for jobs. This does not sound fun by any means, but if you are passionate about your career it can be fun. These steps will help prepare you for your job hunt.

Pick a location you like. Most college students have travelled around. If you have an area or state that you enjoy, look there for jobs. If you want to get away from home, pick a couple of places to which you have always wanted to go. Picking a place to land right after college is important because that place could make or break you and your bank account. Know what you are getting into before moving to an unknown area. Always look into different locations instead of relying on just one location. If you look in a variety of locations, you may have options when it comes time to select a career. It helps to have a backup or two.

Research companies before applying. The last word you want to hear is research; however, it is important in job hunting. Researching a company has many benefits. If you interview with a company, you can talk about the knowledge and information you know about them already. You will be able to ask specific questions about their company as well. During your research, you may find something you have a question about or an aspect of their company you do not understand. You will also have a leg up on the other applicants who did not do research. There are also cons to not doing your research. If you are hired by a company and then learn about the morals they have, yours may not align. You will also look incompetent during your interview.

Compare jobs. After your research is complete, compare the jobs you looked into. See which one pays more, has a better location, or is closest to home. Rank them in categories that are important to you. This might seem odd, but it will help you see which job is the best fit for you and which ones would not be a good fit. Compare jobs in different locations to one another. This may help you narrow down a location you want to live in.

Send out your information even if there are no open positions. If you find a company you are very interested in and they do not have jobs available, email them anyway. Most companies are willing to keep your resume on file for when they have open positions. This also shows that you are interested in the company and not just the job opening. Bosses do not want to hire workers who are not motivated or passionate about their company.

Make your cover letter stand out. Start with you, talk about your major, where you attend college, and why you are interested in the company. The second paragraph should tell your skills. The third paragraph should be about the company, what you like about them, how you would fit in, and what you believe that career or industry is all about. For example, “Public Relations, to me, is coming alongside clients and helping them stand out in a positive light.” I have used this in a cover letter to all the companies I have applied to. It is generic so it fits all the PR firms I am interested in.

College seniors need to be serious about their job search. These steps will help you get the job you want. Take your hunt seriously. Spend at least an hour a day looking into jobs. This will help you see new positions, companies, and opportunities available to you.

 

Until next time my sassy peaches,

EM