Congratulations, Class of 2013! Your homework’s been turned in. Your finals are all completed. You’re all finished cleaning out your room, and you’re packed up for a permanent summer break. It’s official: you’re done with college.
And yet, there is still one homework assignment you haven’t quite figured out yet: finding a job after college. Everyone has to do it. After all, isn’t this what you’ve spent the last 4 years of your life for?
Your next homework assignment in life
Truth be told, this is probably one of your toughest assignments in your college career, this is largely due to the state of the economy and the year you were born. No really, think about it this way: statistically speaking, more than half of your fellow recent graduates are unemployed (53 percent) and the average length of that unemployment is six months.
Right now, you have been thrown into a new generational workforce. Nearly 1.5 million grads will be seeking employment over the next few months, that’s a lot of competition. So have you already had to ask yourself, “Why can’t I get a job?”
Volunteering, growing your skill sets for your job search
Along with the competition of finding a job and landing an interview, our generation, those of us born around 1982-2001 are having to fight off some pretty tough criticisms. Looking for a way to disprove these Millennial Myths?
Here’s one simple option that you may want to consider: volunteer opportunities. As a student, you may have taken part in them in order to build your resume, or you had enough time on your hands to commit to something you had a genuine passion for the cause. Well, the same principles apply even in the real-world. You can find opportunities that allow you to volunteer for the type of career you want, while working somewhere that provides you with the income you need.
Volunteering allows you to learn the following traits and skills that can translate into career success:
1) Time-management – When volunteering outside of work, you have to learn how to balance your professional needs with your personal interests. By creating a solid schedule and sticking to it you will gain the skills you need to manage an 8-5 workload.
2) Team-building – Volunteering allows you the opportunity to work with a variety of people who may share your interests, but may not always share your approach to getting things done. But just think: if you can learn how to deal with difficult fellow volunteers, you’ll be able to handle difficult co-workers.
3) Customer-oriented approach – Usually volunteers come together to serve a purpose that’s greater than themselves. When you get involved in something you’re truly passionate about, you’re more likely to put aside your needs in order to make sure the people you’re serving are satisfied. What employer wouldn’t like to know this about their candidate?
Overall, the great thing about volunteering is that it helps to show that you’re flexible; something that 47 percent of hiring managers advise of recent college graduates. You may not land the perfect position within a company, but by getting your foot in the door and putting in the extra work, you may be closer to your dream job than you think. So, when looking for that first job, don’t be afraid to take it back to school, now get in the know with some of the toughest questions you might have about trying to find a career after college.
College graduates FAQs
Check out our responses to the most frequently asked questions for some great insight and practical advice that can give you the edge you need to land the position you’re looking for. More>>
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