Hey There Soon-to-be-Graduates,
This is an exciting time for you – you’ll soon be leaving your comfort zone of pizza-fueled late-night study sessions and dreaded early morning classes and officially enter the real world. In other words, many see this as the time to get a “real job” and/or the time to start planning your future career path. So many exciting adventures are in store for you and we’re here to give you some pointers on getting your dream career off to a great start.
First things first…you need to have a compelling resume. At this point, your resume will likely be one page. Unless you’ve had internships or jobs, you may have trouble filling up that page. Don’t worry, here are some things to consider when creating your resume:
- Unless you have done something completely remarkable in your life prior to college, it’s best not to include references to your high-school experiences.
- Relevant internships and work experience should be highlighted on your resume, and don’t be afraid to include a considerable amount of detail. What did you accomplish? Were you able to work with new technologies? Did you participate in any projects of relevance? Did you get to work with c-level executives? What hands-on experience did you get? Think about what that internship taught you and put it down on paper.
- If you don’t have industry-specific work or internship experience, don’t hesitate to include detail on successful school projects. Perhaps highlight relevant skills that you’ve obtained from working on class or group projects. The key is to show future employers that you have actually utilized the certain skills that they are looking for.
- Include a skills section. Make sure that you list specific industry skills that you are confident in. This will vary depending on your desired career or industry. We already know you’re probably a “great team-player” and an “excellent communicator”, so swap those generic buzz-words, for specifics skills. Hint: if you’re applying for a certain job, review the job description and include listed skills on your resume if they are applicable to you.
- If you have leadership experience, volunteer work, or interesting extra-curricular activities, it’s worth dedicating some space to those achievements as well. Show employers that you are well-rounded. Plus, these activities may spark interesting conversation in an interview.
- If you are entering the creative, marketing or tech/development industry, make sure to include a link to your online portfolio or work samples.
- Include a link to your LinkedIn Stay tuned for tips on creating a professional LinkedIn profile.
- If you don’t have a professional-sounding email address, NOW is the time create one.
- Be sure to include your degree and GPA if it’s a 3.0 or higher. If you’ve graduated with honors or studied abroad, include that information as well.
- Spell check! Before you submit your resume to an employer, be sure it is free of any and all errors. Review your resume and review it again. And again. And once again.
Stay tuned or follow our blog for more information on landing your first job. We will be discussing social media and creating a professional LinkedIn profile next time.