To Graduation and Beyond!

Graduation can be the cause of excitement, but in more cases than not, it is hectic and horrifying. Graduation is one of those times of transition. We have been through so many transitions in our lives, but that doesn’t keep each one from seeming more daunting than the last. The key is to not only prepare yourself as far as experience and job searching is concerned, but also to prepare yourself mentally.

The first thing you should do after graduation is to make sure you keep learning. I know. More learning? I bet you thought you were finally out of the woods. Never! Learning never ceases for those who wish to remain up to date in the workforce. Volunteering in your field is a great way to keep up to snuff with your skills as well as build up materials for your portfolio. Also be sure you know how to work all of the latest technology. Don’t have a Twitter? You might want to start one so if your future job requires you to deal with social media, you will be prepared for and successful with your new duties.

Make sure you have everything you need to be successful in the workforce before you join it. Business cards, a Web site, and an online profile in a program such as LinkedIn are almost required for people joining the workforce.  You never know when you might meet someone who might be able to give you a contact that you will need. If you have a business card to give them, it looks much more professional as well as being an easy way to keep your contact information. If your business card has a Web site or online portfolio, they will be able to better evaluate you as an employee. A common mistake is people think they need to be able to put a business for which they work before they make business cards, but personal business cards often just have contact information and the types of jobs you are capable of doing.

One of the most important things is to keep calm and carry on. You’ve made it this far; what is to keep you from being able to complete this next task? College is one of the most demanding times in your life. You have classes, homework, organizations, part-time jobs, internships, projects, and all of the other things that come with school. Now all of those duties will be over with, so you can focus all of your energy on just one thing, finding a job.

You’ve hurdled so many challenges, and you’ve done so many difficult things. You can do this, too. Just keep your head up, and just do what you have to do. It may be a difficult time, but don’t you remember the terror you had when applying for college? You got through that, and you will get through this. I’m not saying it won’t be hard, but you can do this. College has prepared you more than you think. You are resilient. You are resourceful. You are intelligent. You can do it.

— Brian