Volunteer to start your career

 

The first step in looking desirable to employers could be getting your hands dirty with a volunteer gig.
The first step in looking desirable to employers could be getting your hands dirty with a volunteering gig.

Entering your dream job—or even your dream job field—right out college has always fallen into Catch-22 territory:  How do you obtain job experience in a field you’ve never worked without someone hiring you to get that experience? Well, according to LinkedIn’s Career Expert and founder of WORKS, an online resource for career-minded young women, Nicole Williams says that the Millennials, the demographic group following Generation X born between 1983 and 2000, are currently writing the book on how to get that relevant experience.

Williams says that it’s all about volunteer work. Millennials are finding that many of the not-for-profit organizations that have seen funding evaporate with the recent economic woes have been offering positions to volunteers that go beyond trivial daily duties and are actually attached to real skill development.

“Volunteer opportunities are more challenging. They’re more interesting. They’re more strategic and they offer a lot more than what they did in the past,” says Williams. “There are a lot of fundraising positions, social media, marketing, public relations and website development positions. All of those positions would have been funded at a point in time, but now they’re not. So, the experience and the opportunities to learn have just increased exponentially.”

What she is seeing trending with the Millennials, who represent the largest number of the over 225 million LinkedIn members who have added the “Volunteer & Causes” field to their profiles, is that they are filling of these volunteer positions simultaneously while holding down their first jobs out of college.

“And, frankly, that’s pretty smart,” says Williams. “What’s happening is they’re getting a double hit in terms of exposure to new relationships that are hopefully going to lead to full-time employment in their desired field.”

Williams also makes clear that no cause is too small. If you can’t donate time to staffing a part-time position at an organization, she says: “Go out to your community. I was walking down the street in New York City and there’s a new “Clean It Up” initiative for the summer season. Yeah, you’re going to spend a day sweeping, but that’s not the point. You’re putting it out there that you’re taking the initiative to go out and find opportunities.”

According to Williams, employers are responding to seeing these experiences on resumes as hiring managers are “always looking for an affinity.” She believes that the volunteer work being done by this demographic illustrates that larger and possible global interests are on their mind, which could potentially align with the gatekeepers of your dream job.

Employers seem to be getting it, too. Williams states, “employers really do understand that the world of volunteering has really changed and there’s a high number of hiring managers that consider volunteer work part of the package when their assessing if this is the right person for the job.”


News
Entertainment
Sports
Lifestyle
Local

Supporters say man accused of robbery was misidentified

A Liberian immigrant couple charged with extorting money from an elderly woman in March will be in court Thursday for a bail hearing, but supporters say it's a case of…

International

Canadian charged in 'Heartbleed' attack on tax agency

OTTAWA (Reuters) - Canadian police have arrested a 19-year-old man and charged him in connection with exploiting the "Heartbleed" bug to steal taxpayer data from…

Local

Could this be the end of ICE holds…

Mayor Michael Nutter directed city agencies to stop cooperating with Immigrations and Customs Enforcement (ICE) detainer holds via executive order today.

National

Every dog has his day in court, in…

(Reuters) - Call him juror K-9.A computer glitch is likely to blame for a summons that called a German Shepherd to report for jury duty,…

Television

‘Survivor: Cagayan’ recap: Episode 8

Sure, it's called Survivor. But this season should really be called 'The Tony Show.'

Television

Jim Rash talks 'The Writer's Room' and amazing…

For Jim Rash, as the fifth season of "Community" comes to a close, the second season of "The Writer's Room" begins.

Television

'Dexter' star Jennifer Carpenter moves into producing role

The actress who played the title character's sister in "Dexter" is teaming up with producer George Stelzner to adapt Erika Hayasaki's book "The Death Class:…

The Word

Wahlburgers announce North America domination

Tuesday was a huge day for Donnie Wahlberg.

NFL

2014 NFL Mock Draft: Updated, new April version

2014 NFL Mock Draft: Updated, new April version

NHL

Flyers, Rangers meet in playoffs for 11th time

The Flyers and Rangers will start a new chapter in a historic rivalry.

MLB

MLB Power Rankings: A's are baseball's best, Brewers…

MLB Power Rankings: A's are baseball's best, Brewers and Braves right behind

NHL

Top 5 Philadelphia storylines for Flyers-Rangers

The slate is clean for the Flyers and the Rangers. Which is good news for the Flyers.

Wellbeing

This Week in Health: chocolate may prevent obesity…

Can chocolate prevent obesity and diabetes? Location of study: U.S. Study subjects: Mice Results: The positive health benefits of chocolate have been studied increasingly more…

Wellbeing

This Week in Health News: breastfed infants trying…

Are breastfed infants trying to prevent mom from having another baby? Theory: The act of breastfeeding not only brings mom and baby closer together –…

Wellbeing

Unexplained infertility may be caused by lack of…

Researchers have identified a protein on the egg's surface that interacts with another protein on the surface of sperm, allowing the two cells to join.

Tech

5 surprising facts about Google Glass

Your sex life could get more interesting.