So, it’s the Spring semester of your senior year and you still don’t have a job. For many, that ruins their whole semester. This is often a cause for panic. As much as we want to say “just chill, enjoy your last semester,” we know that’s not much consolation. Instead, let’s dive into some job search tips and tricks for college seniors. While the job search is a monster, you can tame it.
Job search with a plan
Everyone’s Spring semester is different, but everyone is busy with their schoolwork, extracurricular, and social lives. Job searching on top of that? Madness. And yet it must be done. we cannot overstate how important it is to prepare and plan for how you will spend your time to ensure that you are always working towards your goals. Keep these three ideas in mind when you are planning out your job search:
- How much time will you spend each week?
- What resources will you use in the job search?
- Are your materials in order? Your resume, cover letter templates, and LinkedIn should all get a refresh to best reflect who you are and what you bring to the table.
Set aside time to job search as if it was another class in your curriculum. It is easy to get overwhelmed with the immensity of it all or keep deprioritizing it in favor of everything else in your busy schedule. The job search as a college senior is essential, and a few hours each week of dedicated time makes a tremendous difference.
Jobs are getting posted and getting filled in a constant stream, and you never know when your dream job awaits.
10 Job Search Tips for College Seniors
While the job search is hard, there are a lot of great tools at your disposal to help you reach your goal. Here are 10 quick tips to help you succeed in finding your first job out of college!
- Narrow your focus. You need to know where to look to find the right positions. Familiarize yourself with LinkedIn search filters, think about location, salary expectations, and most importantly, the specifics of the positions you are looking for. What kinds of job titles are you interested in, and what mix of daily tasks, weekly tasks, and ongoing projects do you want in your first job?
- Utilize career center resources. Most colleges and universities have a fantastic career center with professionals who will sit with you and review your application materials, conduct mock interviews, or discuss your career goals. You will likely change your perspective through the course of the job search, and you can chat with them at any time.
- Keep application materials up to date. Your resume, cover letter, portfolio, and LinkedIn should be pristine when you are job searching. This not only increases the chances of you hearing back from applied jobs, but it also puts you higher on the list when recruiters are looking for candidates.
- Use your support network. Surround yourself with people who are in your corner. You are not alone in the job search in your senior year, and for every person who is cruising through their final semester with a job lined up, there are two or three students in the same boat as you.
- Leverage your professional network. A lot of jobs are offered through people’s networks. You never know who will be in the right place at the right time to offer you an amazing job right out of college. Reach out to family, friends, and alumni in your field. They have the inside information on open positions in their company.
- Take a break. The job search may last the entire semester, or even longer. Its toll is intense, and if you find it ruining your mood, take some time off. A week where you go lights out and don’t send any applications or initiate any conversations can help you be more productive when you get back into it.
- It is not the end of the world if you graduate without a job. About half of the recent graduates don’t have a position lined up immediately after graduation. Living in your parent’s basement is not always ideal, but it gives you the perfect base of operations from which to conduct the job search with renewed vigor.
- Practice interview skills. There are few feelings as dour as leaving an interview knowing that you botched it. Practice with your career center or your friends to ensure that you put your best foot forward when you have an interview with a company.
- Negotiate your job offer. After all this, it’s tempting to jump with joy and say “yes!” the moment you receive your first offer. As a new grad, negotiating your job offer can pay serious dividends, and you don’t want to pass up on the opportunity.
- Remember to enjoy your final semester. College is a fantastic time, and being in your final semester is a time to celebrate! Make sure to take time to enjoy yourself with friends through these last few months.
Find your first job out of college
Any one of the applications you send out could be the one. Keep applications flowing through the course of the semester and you will certainly find a job out of college. Alongside getting into the right rhythm, a place like Pathrise can give you the perfect leg up to secure a fantastic position. On average, Pathrise increases interview scores by 200%, triples application responses and lands our fellows jobs in three to five months. We’ve helped thousands of fellows find their dream job. Interested? Join our next cohort and get 14 days free with no commitments!