Searching for Opportunities
It may seem strange to think about this now, but four years at Berea College can fly by so fast it’s easy to miss out on all the significant practical experiences that are available to you.
To ensure that you squeeze everything in that is important to you, use the links below to plan ahead! Questions? Our Career Development Staff are here to help you fill in the blanks.
- First Years – discover your major & career possibilities and clarify your direction
- Sophomores – develop your vision and try out your career path through practical experiences
- Juniors – deepen your intentions through targeted experiences and networking opportunities
- Seniors – launch your strategy and implement your action plan
Searching for Opportunities
- Think of it as a long-term campaign.
- Give yourself at least 6-9 months to find a job (12 months is entirely possible)
- Sources for job leads are best found when networking. Don’t be afraid to reach out –
- Parents and Parents’ Friends
- Newspaper – yes, employers still use it!
A major question you need to ask yourself is: Do I have an understanding of the field/industry?
- What types of jobs are available?
- What types of companies are there?
- What’s the average pay and benefits package for this job?
- What is the demographic makeup of this field?
- What is a typical workday like?
If you do not have an understanding, you need to educate yourself on the organizations and industries you are interested in working for!
The best thing for you to do during your job search is to be HELPABLE!
- People will be able to help you if you can help them understand what you are looking for and what your credentials & qualifications are!
Never Quit! Don’t give up! Get used to being told “No!” No is better than never asking for a job! No’s will eventually turn to a Yes, but it may take time. Be patient, but diligent in the process. The job seekers that secure jobs work hard at their job search and take part in activities outside of their academics. Remember – getting a job is a job! Attend Workshops, Career Fairs, Guest Lectures, and special events such as Cornell Weekend.
Be Industry Savvy- Reading articles and websites that employees in the field read, start to use the “language” and be up to date on current issues in the field. This shows the employer that you are knowledgeable in the field will be able to acclimate to the new position much quicker.
Who are You?- Ask someone you don’t know to review your résumé. Will they be able to tell who you are, what you are looking for and what you have to offer? If not, then consider revising it!
Harness the Power of Networking – Networking is about building relationships and connections. Seek out knowledgeable people and ask them about the industry to their organization to gain a better understanding of what the “behind the scenes” is like.
Be Persistent – Get a time frame and follow up with the interviewers. Employers may want to determine which prospective employees take initiative to follow up. If you are not persistent in the search, then perhaps you won’t be an employee who follows up?
Keep Notes – Maintain an interview journal, Excel spreadsheet or whatever works best for you! Take notes on the name of the organization, who you met with, position title, location, etc. and any pertinent notes about your application process or interview. Keep it handy in case an employer calls unexpectedly. Always show that you are prepared and able to accommodate them at that time. If not, then someone else will!
Grind it out – Realistically, don’t expect to receive an offer on the first position you apply for. Get “thick skinned” and be prepared for some rejection. It is most likely nothing against you personally, it’s just an employer’s market and there are many of highly qualified candidates also searching for a job. Consider this: Your competition is your fellow Berea Seniors…plus all of the other Seniors around the nation or world…plus the unemployed graduates still searching…plus tenured employees that have been laid off, etc. That’s a lot of people looking for that same position!
Remember – Make time for your future career! Start now and do something every day to help advance your job search. If you have questions, ask just ask for help!