Whether you’re in college or just graduating, having a job is crucial. You’ve got bills–a lot –to pay. Plus, the whole reason you attend college is to eventually get your dream job.
But getting that job can be really hard and nerve-wracking. First you have to look for said job and apply. Then there is the excruciating wait until they call you in for an interview—or not.
A lot of what causes this nervousness is simply not being prepared and that is a very common mistake most students make.
“Lack of preparation leads to lack of self-confidence. 78 percent of recruiters cite enthusiasm as the most likely factor to influence a hiring decision after an initial in-person interview,” said Mandy Weister, a career counselor at the Career Development Center.
Part of being prepared is tailoring a resume and cover letter to the job you’re applying for, said Weister.
“It is a good idea to spend some time before job hunting to compile all your experiences in a resume and get the hang of writing a cover letter,” said Weister. A big part of job searching is also networking.
Students can create a LinkedIn account to connect with professionals at conferences or at job interviews, Weister said. She also suggests seeking out MNSU faculty or alumni for help. The more people you know while job searching, the better chance you’ll have of getting the job.
“Jobvite research indicates that the average job search takes at least six weeks,” said Weister.
Thus, it is suggested to be patient during this process. Though sometimes the process can be a bit longer or shorter, it all depends on the job.
Weister also invites any students who needs help with a cover letter to come by the Career Development Center.
“Use our walk-in QuickStop hours from Monday to Thursday 12 p.m. to 3 p.m. for individualized guidance,” said Weister. “Alternatively, students can make a 50-minute appointment with a career counselor as well.”
She also suggests that students take a good look at the job they are applying for, studying the description and qualifications. This can aid in writing your cover letter. Weister recommends that students “turn each qualification into a question and practice answering that question.” Students should also practice very simple questions, such as telling the interviewer about yourself. This is what will start the interview off on the right foot, said Weister. Students can also utilize the CDC for practice interviews.
With this information and the help of the CDC, students should find job searching much easier and not something that causes a lot of nervousness. Even if you’ve already graduated, Weister says that alumni can still use resources at MNSU.
Students should also keep in mind that the first job you get probably won’t be your dream job. But it’s still a job, and every job you get in your field can be another set up toward the position you’ve always dreamed of.
“Every position has something to teach you and it can be used as a building block in your career,” said Weister. “You just never know what skills, talents, and passions you will develop along the way.”
Photo: (CC BY-SA 2.0 by amtec_photos)