By Savitre “Rapture” Schaefferkoetter, Contributing Writer

Job hunting can be easy with your college degree as long as you prepare, network, and stay proactive. Today, I will share tips that will help if you are a recent college graduate or an alumna looking for a career change.

Depending on personal factors, you may want to start working right out of college or take time off. Luckily, you get a grace period before having to pay most student loans, and if your job hunt takes longer, you may apply for more time.

According to Fedloan Servicing, “once you leave school or drop below halftime you enter a six month grace period where you are not required to make payments.”

After this grace period runs out, you may look into applying for deferment or forbearance. Those with qualifying career choices may receive the Public Service Loan Forgiveness.

Preparation is key. Watch interview videos and practice your answers in the mirror or with a trusted individual who will give you feedback. When looking up successful interview videos recently, I came across a friendly face on YouTube,  Linda Raynier. Raynier, a career strategist and coach, made the interviewing process sound more reasonable. Watching her videos was as familiar as talking to a fellow sorority sister.

rapture_jobsearch_photo02Work on your resume. If you don’t know where to start, ask for help from the career services department at your school, which is typically free for students and alumni. If you still feel like your resume lacks pizzazz, look into hiring a professional resume writer. I discussed my qualifications with a resume writer, who helped me put my skills into words I could not have thought of myself. Raynier stresses the importance of how a recent college grad still has much to offer on a resume.

“I would say focus your energy to learn how to sell yourself on your resume, because even with limited experience, you can get a job,” Raynier said.

She offers a Top Notch Resume course that may interest job seekers at www.lindaraynier.com.*

Get a tailored suit. I have seen fellow interviewees show up in outfits that might pass for a first date. But this is not a first date, it is a first impression on your future employer. Ladies, luckily you have the options of wearing a knee-length skirt or slacks. However, it is important to have your suit tailored. Long sleeves and pants legs are only temporarily amusing. Also, be sure that the pieces all match the same color tone.

Network at job fairs. Print out multiple copies of your resume. Look at a list of companies, and highlight which ones you want to go to. Check out the United States Job Fair Directory, which is “a free comprehensive listing site showcasing job fairs throughout the United States.”

I personally had luck attending a job fair hosted by Job News USA, referred to me by another job hunter. This job fair producing company describes themselves as “continually evolving to provide our customers with the very best in recruitment marketing.”  

Accept multiple interviews. I know it’s easy to be excited about the first interview offer and to finally stop filling out applications. You may be tempted to answer other interview offers with a decline. Please do not decline. An interview, although a promising factor that the employer wants you on their team, is not a job offer. While you are a free agent, fit these different company interviews into your schedule. You may find that with each interview, you are getting closer to the perfect job.

Be proactive. Follow up with applications and interviews in a timely manner. Remember to send thank you emails after interviews. Look eager, but not desperate. Show interest, but don’t become a stalker.

I hope with all these tips, you may feel empowered to find a career. We are all capable of achieving great things beyond what degrees we have. Whether you graduated this spring or ten years ago, you are an integral part in the workforce.

*Top Notch Resume and Linda Raynier are not affiliated with Delta Phi Lambda, Inc., and relevant mentions are of the opinion of the writer.


Featured Image: Alexas_Fotos. Stickies Post-It List. Retrieved from https://pixabay.com/en/stickies-post-it-list-business-2852375/

Article Image: Niekverlaan. Keyboard Button Key. Retrieved from https://pixabay.com/en/keyboard-button-key-entering-input-417090/

Sources: 

Raynier, Linda. About. Retrieved from www.lindaraynier.com

Fedloan Servicing. Student Loans 101. Retrieved from myfedloan.org.

Jobnewsusa. Retrieved from www.jobnewsusa.com.

The United States Job Fair Directory. Retrieved from www.jobfairsin.com