BY: KAITLIN VIENNE
The Final Countdown (to Graduation!)
So, you’re a senior now and you’re getting ready to graduate, huh? You may be asking yourself how the time flew by so fast and feeling as if you just graduated high school, nonetheless about to graduate college. (In my case, graduating a semester early is even scarier!) The final semester may be filled with stress, excitement and opportunity. Seniors are avidly trying to finish their degree on the same foot they started off on while simultaneously trying to land that first big job offer. But, do we really know what we want to do? And how to begin the rest of our lives? That’s a difficult question to answer.
The job search….
Unless you have had an abundance of internships in the exact field that you think you’d be perfect for, it’s quite normal to feel a bit lost or confused in the job search. Internships allow students to figure out jobs that they love and others that they hate. It’s easy to have liked your internships but what is challenging is figuring out if that career is the perfect path for you.
How does a student know which jobs to apply to, especially if they are in a broad field? How do you figure out what the right decision is for you?
My best advice is to truly take a look at the job description, don’t just skim it. If the description aligns with your interests and appears to be an exciting opportunity, apply! (If your skills match, of course). If it is something that you decided you are not quite interested in, take a look at opportunities elsewhere. Try to find as much information about a company through their website, LinkedIn, glassdoor, career center and peers. Determine whether their work environment is one that you may enjoy and thrive in. It is important to remember that this is where you will be spending a majority of your time, so it is wise to make what you think is the right choice. Don’t worry about what other people are doing – this is your future after all!
Job searching AND keeping up with classes?
If you are like me, you may have thought that senior year would be a bit easier than the previous years. Boy, was I wrong! My five classes have been heavily focused on team assignments, essays and countless hours of reading. Granted, I am learning insightful and relevant information about my major and find value in what I am being taught. Trying to keep up with school work while searching for your perfect job is quite the time management struggle. It may become frustrating spending a lot of time on job applications (that you may never hear back from) over allotting time to your school work. I have found that what works best for me is putting my school work first and setting aside specific days to look into job listings and work on my applications. This keeps me organized and prioritizes my degree (after all, I can’t graduate without passing my classes!)
SENIOR TIP: LinkedIn is a great resource to use when searching for jobs. Research open positions, companies and reach out to connections in roles you have an interest in. Download the LinkedIn Jobs app, as you can set alerts for specific companies and open roles. The app sends you a notification whenever a new job posting that matches your saved search appears. This saves me a ton of time, as I do not have to spend everyday checking the corporate website for new openings.
The countdown is on!
Graduation is less than a month away. Can you believe it? I sure can’t. The feelings of sadness have started to arise as I can’t imagine leaving the wonderful friends and network that I have made here in Delaware. From spending hours in Purnell Hall to studying in the Reading Room and on Main Street in Panera, it is going to be hard to leave.
However, continue to remember that:
- College ends, but your friendships and memories do not
- Continue to utilize the network you have made. From peers to counselors to professors to past employers, communication is key and maintaining a relationship will always help you in the long run.
- Take what you have learned and run with it. Four years has expanded your mind, changed your opinions and shaped who you are today. Realize how much you have changed and take pride in your accomplishments.
- Remember that EVERYTHING WILL BE OK! You may not land your dream job the second you graduate and there will be hurdles in the road ahead. Take every discouragement as an opportunity to grow and remember that you have unlimited potential.
Be confident, continue working hard and congratulations on graduating! Be back soon, UD.
Kaitlin Vienne is a senior at the University of Delaware studying Marketing with minors in Advertising and International Business. She is a Social Media Marketing Intern at the Career Services Center and an active member of Chi Omega Fraternity, graduating in December of 2017.