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Posted July 05, 2016 by

5 ways first-year college students can take advantage of career services

If you’re gearing up for college as a first-year college student, you’re probably super excited. And nervous. And overwhelmed by a large to-do list… Pack, meet your roommate, scope out the best parking spots, locate your classes, and find decent restaurants near campus. And of course you’ll want to buy your books, meet your academic advisor, and stop by career services during your first semester on campus.

Career services—what? You’ve only just begun taking college courses—career services is for seniors, right? Wrong. The worst thing you can do is wait until you’re a senior in college to reach out to career services for help.

This short video, hosted by College Recruiter’s Content Manager, Bethany Wallace, lists five ways first-year college students can take advantage of career services.


If the video is not playing or displaying properly click here.

1.Get to know career services professionals during your first year on campus.

They’re your greatest allies in your job search. They’ll help you find great opportunities to gain experience, including part-time and full-time jobs, volunteer opportunities, internships and externships. You can begin learning about these opportunities as a first-year college student.

“Career services professionals are there to help guide and ease your career search. The cost is free, and the things you gain are priceless!” claims Xiaoying Chen, Human Resources Coordinator and former career services professional.

2. Take skill/interest inventories (free via career services).

The skill and interest inventories provided by career services are much more in depth and offer way better feedback than the 10-question surveys you might have taken online via social media in the past. There’s a reason career services offices pay for access to these assessment tools; as a college student, you have access to take the assessments at no cost, so why not take advantage of this opportunity to learn about your personality, work style, skills and abilities, and interests? The more you learn about yourself and the better you understand yourself, the more likely you are to choose a degree path/major that suits you well.

Be sure to take skill/interest inventories as a first-year college student because at most colleges and universities, you have to declare a major course of study by the end of your sophomore year (or when you have earned 60 credit hours).

3. Begin networking and branding yourself.

These two long-term activities—or ways of life, really—go hand in hand. If you’re showing people who you are in your best light (what branding is all about), building great relationships (networking) is much more natural and easier.

Stop by your career services office on campus to ask about ways you can begin networking with employers right away. Career services offices typically host meet-and-greet events to allow students and employers to connect. They also host career fairs on campus and on-campus interviews and informational interviews. Some career services offices even partner with employers to provide site visits to allow students to see what employers do on a daily basis. Be open to suggestions made by your career services professionals and take advantage of opportunities to get to know employers. The sooner you begin branding yourself as someone who’s eager to learn, the better off you’ll be when you begin applying for internships and jobs.

4. Get involved on campus.

It’s easy to put your head down, study hard, and focus on grades and nothing else during your first year of college. It’s just as easy to do the opposite and do nothing but party your first year of college. Neither of those are really good options in the long run. If possible, keep your grades up but don’t avoid interacting with people either.

Join at least one or two organizations with a genuine purpose. Ideally the organizations you join provide you with opportunities to learn or grow in ways you can develop technical or soft skills which you can later list on your resume. Look for opportunities to work as part of a team, opportunities to lead, opportunities to solve problems, and opportunities to put the academic lessons learned in the classroom to use in a creative way outside of the classroom.

5. Create a draft of a resume or at least a running list (to be converted into a resume later).

Ideally, you should create a draft of a resume, even if it’s rather sketchy and thrown together during your first year of college. Just get started!

If you don’t actually lay out your resume in resume format, at least create a running list of your activities, honors and awards, skills, campus involvement, and work and volunteer experience. Keeping up with what you have done and are doing is crucial. Keep this list in Microsoft Word or Google Docs and in the cloud; don’t keep it on a device which can be stolen, damaged, or lost. When you’re ready to create your first real resume, your list will be retrievable.

For more tips to help you get on the right track to career success, stay connected by following us on LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter, and YouTube.

Posted August 18, 2015 by

5 Common Myths about College Life

myths word concept

MYTHS word concept. Photo courtesy of Shutterstock.

If you are going to start college then congratulations because you are going to start a new chapter of your life and you have to make sure that you will make the most out of it. The moment that you get accepted into the college of your choice, you cannot help but feel euphoria because it seems surreal.

There is a chance that you have already heard a lot of things about college life and you cannot help but feel a bit scared because you feel that you already know what you want to expect. Are you sure that everything that you have heard is true? What if some of the things that you have learned are just myths? (more…)

Posted August 07, 2015 by

Four reasons to enjoy your college days

group of university students outdoors looking happy

Group of university students outdoors looking happy. Photo courtesy of Shutterstock.

If you remember your last few school days or months, you would realize how college excited you and also developed a sense and anxiety within you. The fear of changing your life, having to become more responsible, learning more advanced courses and preparing for professional life all contribute to your growing anxiety before you go to college.

However, the moment you step on to the journey of your college as a freshman, you would realize that there is much beyond the general fear and anxiety levels. College is a journey which is like a transition period from the school and university. It acts as a bridge at an age where students are the most vulnerable and are during their teenage part of life. College teaches much more than mere education, it helps students find their feet in this world and learn to fight or combat various challenges and prepares themselves for even tougher life to come. Every student has their own perceptions and reasons to love college and enjoy the college days. However, in general, there are some common elements that can be taken into account when it comes to determining why you should love your college and enjoy the college days. Today’s guest post is exactly going to talk about those four reasons in the next sections of this article. (more…)

Posted January 29, 2015 by

How to Prepare for the Start of the College Year

Happy female college student. Isolated on white background

Happy female college student. Isolated on white background. Photo courtesy of Shutterstock.

Whether you’re a returning student or about to embark on your freshman year of education, how you prepare before the academic year starts can have a big impact on your productivity throughout the term. Below you’ll find three tips for helping you get ready to go back to school. (more…)

Posted January 21, 2015 by

5 Books Every Incoming College Freshman Should Read

Girl reads a book

Girl reads a book. Photo courtesy of Shutterstock.

Are you headed off to school? Here are five books you should read before your first official class. For various reasons, they’re all life- and perspective-changing.

1. A Short History of Nearly Everything by Bill Bryson

Sharp, smart and hilariously funny, this book offers a layman’s journey through the origins of the universe. It touches on everything from astronomy to chemistry to paleontology, and not only will you finish it as a smarter person than when you began, but you might also find yourself signing up for electives that you never thought you’d want. (more…)

Posted October 09, 2014 by

High School Student Landed a Hedge Fund Internship Thanks to Persistence

The phrase 'hedge fund', made out of crimped 100$ bills. Isolated on white background.

The phrase ‘hedge fund’, made out of crimped 100$ bills. Isolated on white background. Photo courtesy of Shutterstock.

When you have a goal as a student, you should believe that you can achieve it no matter what anyone else says.  The key is not to give up.  Learn about the experience of one high school student who obtained a hedge fund internship by having persistence in the following post. (more…)

Posted September 15, 2014 by

College Students, Looking for Jobs on Campus? How to Prepare for the Job Fair

When looking for jobs on campus, college students should take advantage of job fairs.  Learn how they can prepare for them in the following post.

‘Tis the season, here comes the fall job fair. Next week I am at both Howard University and MIT with a workshop that is designed for students to ‘own’ their job fair experience. How do they prepare in order to be performing in the top 10% of all students who attend job fairs this fall

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Posted October 30, 2013 by

How to Spend the Summer of Your Freshman Year: A Check List

The words School's Out written on a green chalkboard

The words School’s Out written on a green chalkboard. Photo courtesy of Shutterstock.

Summary: Your first year of college is officially over, and a sunny summer is on the horizon. Here’s what to do to set yourself up for an even brighter future.

As the snow begins to melt and spring comes into view, you’ll be ready to cross off a major (if often uncelebrated) event in your adult life: The successful completion of your first year of college.

All the anxiety of the application process is long behind you at this point, you’ve overcome your first semester jitters, you’ve gotten used to your roommate’s quirks, and your college career is officially underway. But this is no time to kick back and idle away the summer months. (more…)

Posted July 08, 2013 by

Knowledge About College You May Not Get From a College Recruiter

While a college recruiter might try to sell you on all of the good stuff about attending the school he or she represents, there are some things you may not be told as a first time college student.  The following post has more information.

Many people find attending college to be a thoroughly enjoyable time at college. It is also an experience that many people are afraid of. Some people actually fear going away to college experience because they do not know…

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The Best College Advice You Will Ever Receive. | Example