Tips to Finding an Internship or Job When You Graduate

Tips to Finding an Internship or Job When You Graduate

The job market has shifted over the past few weeks.  Businesses have shuttered, and 16 million US workers have filed for unemployment benefits due to layoffs as we adjust to the coronavirus pandemic. Yes, this is a tough time for graduating seniors to be job hunting and for students seeking summer internships.

So what can you do? Career & Professional Development offers practical strategies you can use today.

We recently polled 20 employers with locations in South Carolina to check the status of their hiring.  The recruiters’ message for job seekers was overwhelmingly to “keep moving forward – research organizations, make connections, and keep applying!” Nine of the organizations who responded are actively recruiting and interviewing virtually so polish your teleconferencing skills.

One PC alumnus said, “Proceed with your job search as usual and put yourself out there. ”

Organizations that responded to our poll and are hiring represent the following industries or sectors: insurance, technology, transportation, manufacturing and nonprofits.

Regardless of your major, move these job search activities to the top of your list:

Narrow your job target. Before you hit send, research careers and reflect first!  Identify careers that motivate and excite you and know what is important to you in a job. Review job descriptions and postings to get a clearer picture of what types of jobs are out there and their requirements. PathwayU and What Can I Do with This Major? are good resources to use. You can find them on the Career and Professional Development page.

Polish your marketing tools. A strong resume and LinkedIn profile will convey clear job goals and skills that you offer an employer. Use LinkedIn to follow companies, grow your network, make connections, and obtain job leads. Make sure your LinkedIn account setting says that you are open to receiving job opportunities. Use a basic LinkedIn account to start connecting.

Network virtually now. Share your job search goals and marketing documents with others. Create a list of people you can contact to support your search and your end goal. Set up informational interviews via telephone or video conference to have conversations with people of interest and then ask for more referrals.

Remember you need to connect with 100 or more organizations and contacts– and probably more–  to get this going. Reach out to PC alumni by using the Find Alumni tool on LinkedIn. Not sure how? Just ask us.

A job search is a journey. It may take three to six months to land a job offer in good economic times, so take small steps every day to get to your end goal. Remain humble, flexible and do not go it alone.

The Career & Professional Development staff is willing and available to help you  with all aspects of your job or internship search. We’re here now and after spring semester ends. See the Career and Professional Development webpage for more resources to help you find a job or internship. Email us if you need help!