Texas Woman’s offers job hunting tips for college grads

Summer is coming, which means it is interview season for college graduates preparing to start an internship or new job with their future career in mind. Lisa Garza, director of career connections for Texas Womans University, offers some tips so graduates can be ready for the right opportunity when it comes along:

  • Utilize your resources. If you are a current college student, your college career center is likely open during the summer and available to help. Alumni usually can take advantages of these resources as well. Take this time to meet with a career advisor to make some decisions on the best major or career path for you. They can help you formulate the steps you need to take to get to where you want to go.
  • Make sure your resume is ready. It should be critiqued and targeted to your desired position. When determining what to include, think about the relevancy of any content to the position to which you are applying.
  • Develop your online brand via LinkedIn, blogs, portfolios, websites, etc. Update profiles to reflect the professional you. Find ways to display your accomplishments and work products whenever possible. Include links to these on your resume.
  • Clean up any "digital dirt" that may have accumulated before or during your college years. Employers regularly report going to social media sites to check out applicants often before even offering an interview. Make sure your online reputation shows that you are polished and professional.
  • Remember that searching for a job is a full time job. It takes time and, in most cases, requires you to step away from your computer and online job boards. Many jobs are obtained through personal networking. Tell everyone you know that you are searching for a job. Reach out to professionals in positions you aspire to and find out how they got there. Most people enjoy talking about themselves and their career path, you just have to ask.
  • Have an interview outfit picked out in advance and ready to go in case you are called in with little time to shop. Interview attire should be conservative and professional dress slacks/skirt, jacket, simple dress shirt and dress shoes. Unless you are interviewing with a fashion company, your clothes should not be the most interesting thing about you.
  • Prepare for all interviews. Research the company in advance and be able to share some information you learned about their products or services. Practice answering behavioral interview questions. Be ready to talk about your skills, how you developed them and how they will contribute to the position.
  • Keep going. Not everyone gets their dream job the first time they apply. Continue using your resources, applying and interviewing. The right position for you may be just around the corner­ waiting for you to find it.

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