Wednesday, June 27, 2012

7 Things All New Grads Should Know

1)    Your Level of Education is Unique in Canada
As a university graduate you have gained a level of education that most Canadian citizens haven’t achieved. As of June 2011, only 24.6% of Canadians between the ages of 25 and 64 had obtained a university degree. So be proud of your education and remember to highlight it on the top of your resume!

2)      You Can Apply for Jobs Outside of Your Field
Just because you graduated in Psychology doesn’t mean you are limited to applying for counseling positions. Allow yourself to be creative and consider the extremely valuable transferable skills that you developed throughout your degree. Consider consulting our Degree Exploration guides online to view these skills as well as occupations suggested by your faculty.

3)      Do Not Lose the Connections That You Gained During your University Studies  
      Now that you’ve graduated it’s tempting to leave your university life behind. However, the networking that you conducted during your time at Brock can continue to be valuable to you throughout your career. If you had a professor, instructor, or another staff member at Brock that you feel you gained a valuable relationship with make sure you stay in touch! Add them on LinkedIn or drop by for the occasional visit. They can prove to be an excellent reference to provide for an employer or even a friendly contact if you are ever in need of a mentor within your field.

4)      Continue Learning and Develop More Marketable Skills
       If the job you are applying for requires a university degree then you will be qualified over an applicant that hasn’t received this level of education. However, after you’ve passed this checkpoint there will be a number of other skills and experiences that each employer will require of potential employees. So my best advice to you would be to continue learning! You don’t need to go back to school, but teaching yourself new skills relevant to your industry will continue to benefit you and make it easier when job hunting. 

5)     All Your Experience is GOOD Experience! 
      So you worked at a camp for three summers but you’re not going into childcare or teaching – you just graduated from a Business Degree..?! NEVER fear! It’s easy to get caught up in the “Related Experience” section that you want to have on your resume and forget that all experience can be related, as long as you’re constructing solid achievement statements! Think about the skills you enhanced at your jobs rather than focusing too much on the job title. As a Camp Counsellor you were organized, you time-managed and you demonstrated excellent leadership – all things that an employer in the Business sector is looking for. If you’ve worked in the industry before OF COURSE that’s a plus, but if not you’ve still got what it takes, you just have to prove it!

6)     Give Employers a Taste of Your Personality
           It’s important to stay professional during an interview but it’s also extremely important to show the employer a bit of your own unique personality. Once you are hired these people are going to have to work with you so give them a reason to want to! The workplace isn’t only about getting work don’t – co-workers form friendships with each other and can work on many projects together, so it’s important that they all get along! So remember to smile and show them that you are not only a hard worker but a fun person to be around!

7)      Get Comfortable with Social Media – it’s Getting you Hired (and fired..)!
Social media is the fastest growing employer recruitment and job search strategy today –everybody is using it, it cannot be avoided. Sites like LinkedIn are designated for job search and networking, but even Twitter and Facebook can be helpful job search tools for the average job seeker so it’s important to keep all of your Social Media professional. Employers can see everything you do on there (trust us – many employers hire people to do their check-ups!) so ensure that the image you’re projecting online is a positive one. Then you can feel comfortable exercising all of the benefits to Social Media in job search today! 

*Keep an eye out for Ashley’s upcoming blog post where she will review a book called “How to Find a Job on LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter, Myspace and Other Social Networks” for more helpful information about online and social job search!

Thanks for reading!

- Ashley and Brittany 

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