Dear College Graduate,
First let me start by saying congratulations! You’ve spent the last 4 or so years in libraries, pulling all-nighters and working on group projects to get to the this point. That’s a huge endeavor! Believe me when I say graduating college is a huge deal. But let me warn you, the real world is harsh! Prepare yourself to be a little fish in a big pond. Here are a few things to note before you set foot into it.
- Research a company prior to a job interview. Research is SO IMPORTANT when it comes to the job hunt but be sure to also research the companies you interview with. If you walk in with confidence and knowledge about the company personally, you’re ahead of the game!
- Set your salary expectations reasonably. Before you go to that big job interview, do a little research on what the starting salary is for that role in your area. Don’t be surprised if it’s low. Remember you have to start somewhere!
- Job hunting is like having a full-time job. Make time each day to apply for jobs, research companies and polish-up your resume. Expect that it may take some time before you land a job in your field. Be patient with the process!
- If you have student loans, start paying them off. It’s hard to make payments for student loans with a part-time job. There are options! Start with income-based payments and then change to standard payments once you land that full-time job. It’s important to start paying off your debt especially if you want to buy a home in the future!
- If you don’t already have one, start a savings account. Direct deposit is a wonderful thing! When you get the full-tim job, open up a savings account or continue to deposit a small amount of your paychecks each time you get paid. Start off with $50 and up the deposit once you get a raise. You never know when you will need to tap into that savings. (i.e. a down payment on a new car when your college clunker dies!)
Take a deep breath and prepare for the crazy that is the real world. It’s busy and at times stressful but being a part of it is a huge milestone. You’ve got this!