Friday my brother graduated with his Bachelor’s degree. 23 years old and fresh into the real world and adult life, my heart-felt for him. Almost 4 years ago, I was in his shoes. I remember what post grad life felt like it was yesterday.
Eager to start a professional career in my field of advertising I jumped head first into post grad life with a chip on my shoulder. I quickly discovered how hard it was to get a job in my field-or any field for that matter. I felt like a failure. Here’s the funny thing about post grad life, it’s a balance. What you put into your job hunt is what you get out of it. I took a full-time job to pay the bills that didn’t relate to my degree one bit. But I kept my feelers out for a job in advertising. About 9 months after graduation I applied for a position with a local advertising agency with help from an HR contact I had met before I graduated. It worked out. I’ve been with the agency ever since.
What would my advice be for a new college graduate?
- Make use of network contacts: I ended up getting my current job through an HR connection I met through a college internship. Make use of any connections you make through college and internships. You never know where they may be able to help you!
- Attend networking events: If you are still looking for a position in your field get involved in networking events around your city. In college I was a member of the American Advertising Federation. They hosted many events during the year which local ad agencies would participate in. I would meet people and ask them how I could get into my field.
- Don’t narrow your job search: I originally only looked for jobs in advertising copywritnig when I graduated from college. My search was far too narrow to be successful. As soon as I started looking for agency jobs on a wider scope I was able to find opportunities to get my foot in the door. After all you are freshly out of school.
- Don’t let anyone make you feel like your degree is useless: Everyone will ask how you are going to use your degree or what you plan to do. You may not have an answer to those questions and that’s okay! You may not even use your degree when you graduate.
To all of the 2015 fall graduates, Congratulations!! You worked so hard to get where you are today. Don’t stress over finding a job right away. Life has a funny way of working itself out.