Tips for students to graduate into jobs

Got a job interview? Don't be the one to show up unprepared. Know the company and the people you are interviewing with.
Got a job interview? Don’t be the one to show up unprepared. Know the company and the people you are interviewing with.

It’s that time of the year again when students are graduating and are desperately looking for jobs. While some students may have already secured one, others are in panic mode and are even willing to settle for a position just to have an income. A new national study by my company and AfterCollege — the student employment website — of 600 student’s shows that 79% have had at least one internship in the past six months, 57% of those internships were unpaid and 76% didn’t result in a job offer. These numbers are staggering and it just goes to show you that the job market isn’t getting any better. Here are some tips for securing your job upon graduation:

1. Don’t take anything for granted. 44% of those surveyed only apply to between one and five jobs at a time. After submitting your application, don’t stop and wait for a response, keep going. You can’t rely on anything and need to be proactive in your job search if you want results.

2. Work harder at it. 44% of those surveyed only apply to between one and five jobs at a time. You need to make your job search a full-time job. The more jobs you apply for, as long as you’re qualified for them, the higher the probability of success.

3. Think like an entrepreneur. When asked if they were interested in starting a company in the next few years, 62% of students weren’t interested. Entrepreneurship is now a viable path to employment so if you have a great idea, and some ambition, you should do freelance work or create a new product or service to solve a market need.

4. Find networking opportunities. 57% of students wish their schools offered more networking opportunities. It’s your responsibility to find and create your own networking opportunities, even if your college doesn’t have them. Use or to find networking opportunities in your area that relate to your profession.

5. Come to interviews prepared. 37% say that the most stressful part of the job application process is preparing for the interview. I’ve also found that employers feel that students come to interviews unprepared. Through the Internet, you can find out information on the people you’re interviewing with, the company and industry news.

Dan Schawbel is the author of the upcoming book, Promote Yourself: The New Rules For Career Success (Sept 3rd, St. Martin’s Press).



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