Start Your Job Hunt in 6 Steps!

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Start Your Job Hunt in 6 Steps!

Private: Smith College
Education
November 8, 2013
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Hey Seniors! Midterm season is coming to a close and the halfway point of our senior year is slowly creeping up on us… And if you’re anything like me and my friends, maybe you’ve been having some weird stress dreams lately.Or have been breaking out into belligerent crying fits every once and a while… Well, whether or not the behaviors above fit your character, it’s about time for us all to face the inevitable truth: We can’t remain at our beloved Tufts University forever. The job hunt must begin! But then come a series of questions: What do I want to do? Where do I start? What can I even do? How can I do what I really want to do? Where does my liberal arts degree fit into the job world? How can I make best use of my skills? How can I be the happiest? How can I make change? How can I make the most money?And there are probably a million other questions you can add to the list…Well, don’t fret, Seniors! Tufts Career Center has some tips and steps for you on where and how you can get started on your job search right now!Step 1: Self-AssessmentTo help you get a good idea of some places to start, ask yourself questions like: What’s your story? What makes you unique? What do you believe in? How do you want to develop? And don’t forget– For many people, careers are more like jungle gyms than ladders, and your first job will most likely be a step in the journey, rather than the final destination. Your first job is usually just your first job.If you’re having trouble with this step, you can always call (617) 627-3299 to schedule an appointment with a Career Counselor. The Career Center is here to coach you throughout the career process; you don’t have to do it all alone!Step 2: Use your new-found self-knowledge to brainstorm what you can do.Not what you “want” to do because you’ll never really know what that might be until you try! So think: Where can you use your strengths and skills? Where can you pursue your interests? Where can you put your values to work? Establish specific goals, and then determine 2-3 potential career fields that are compatible with your interests, skills, and values. You might want to check out the “Careers & Majors” section on the Career Center Website.If you’re having trouble with this step (hint-hint!), you can always call (617) 627-3299 to schedule an appointment with a Career Counselor. The Career Center is here to coach you through the career process; you don’t have to do it all alone!Step 3: Talk to people who are doing similar things.If someone from your high school who you never even met emailed you asking questions about Tufts and what you do here, would you respond? Few of us wouldn’t. You’d probably either be really eager to share your wisdom, or you’d just see yourself in that adorable little prospy (slang for “prospective student”) and just answer them to be nice! The Career Center recommends using LinkedIn to perform informational interviews with people who work in fields of interest. What all this means is: Find a way to reach out to an alum who is currently on a path you want to explore, and write them saying, “Hello! I’m a Senior, majoring in X, looking to do Y. I see you do Z. Please tell me more! I also have these questions: a, b, c? THANK YOU.”Our post on LinkedIn includes a lot of great tips on how to reach out to the alumni.And of course (nudge-nudge!), if you’re having trouble with this step, you can always call (617) 627-3299 to schedule an appointment with a Career Counselor. The Career Center is here to coach you through the career process; you don’t have to do it all alone!Step 4: Prepare your marketing materials and skills.Now that you’re all focused, update your resume! Perfect your cover letters! Assemble your references! Sharpen your interviewing skills by practicing!If you’re having trouble with any of this (wink-wink!), call (617) 627-3299 to schedule an appointment with a Career Counselor for resume and cover letter critiques, one-on-one counseling, and mock interviews. The Career Center is here to coach you through the career process; you don’t have to do it all alone! Step 5: Research companiesPotential employers can be found on Jumbo Jobs, through the On-Campus Recruiting program, Career Center programs (like career panels, networking events, info sessions), alumni networking contacts via LinkedIn and the Tufts Career Advisory Network (Tufts CAN), professional associations, and on and off-campus Career Fairs (a list of which is available at the bottom of the Tufts Career Homepage).Research each one online (company Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn profiles are great for this), and see if you can connect with alums who work or have worked there for insider advice. If you’re having any trouble with this step (cough–ahem!), you can call Tufts Career Center at (617) 627-3299 to schedule an appointment with a Career Counselor. The Career Center is here to coach you through the career process; you don’t have to do it all alone!Step 6: Get organized and ApplyBefore you begin to apply to jobs, you’ll need to establish an organized system to stay on top of your progress. We recommend compiling a list of job openings and companies looking to hire on a spreadsheet or within a file system. List employers of interest, contacts, important dates, and next steps. Once your system is all set up, begin to initiate contact with employers. Submit your resume with a focused cover letter and then follow up. And of course, if you’re having trouble with this step, you know what to do! (Call (617) 627-3299 to schedule an appointment with a Career Counselor. The Career Center is here to coach you through the career process; you don’t have to do it all alone!)These 6 steps will lead you to people, will lead you to interviews, will lead you to first jobs, will lead you to careers. As a senior myself, I know how incredibly emotional and nerve-wrecking this process is, but the glass is also half full: the job hunt can also be exciting! And if you learn only one thing from this post, please let it be that the Career Center is here to coach you through the career process. You don’t have to do it all alone! You can always call (617) 627-3299 to schedule an appointment with a Career Counselor for assistance with any of these steps.Happy hunting, Jumbos!Until next time,Best regards,Nirv

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