Your senior year of college is a time of transition as you focus on securing your degree while looking ahead to your career after graduation. Keep the following tips in mind as you prepare for this vital year of study.
Take an Internship
The period before your senior year is the perfect time to complete internships. An internship lets you put what you’ve learned in the classroom into practice and decide whether your chosen career path is really right for you. Volunteer for as many different tasks as you can to get a real sense of what you might do once you graduate. Talk to the professionals you meet about their own career paths, and learn how you might land your dream job.
While there are no guarantees, internships can lead to job offers. At worst, you’ll network with people in your field and gain on-the-job experience that should help you in your chosen career.
Clean Up Your Socials
If you’re like most college students, you probably document your life on your favorite social media pages. Take time before your final year of college to think critically about what you’re posting and clean up what’s already there. With 75 percent of hiring managers checking candidate profiles and a third rejecting applicants based on what they find, your socials could help or hinder your career transition.
Browse through your photos and delete any from drunken nights of revelry, or at least make them private for friends only. Nix the posts complaining about boring lectures and annoying parents. Cleaning up social media also involves sending the right messages into the world. With a year up your sleeve, you can make yourself look incredibly employable. Start posting photos from volunteering jobs and sporting engagements. Write posts about the positive steps you’re making to become job-ready. Join LinkedIn if you haven’t already, as this is the No. 1 social media channel that businesses use.
Learn a New Skill
If you’ve completed lots of credits in your past years of study, you might find you have fewer academic demands as you near graduation. While it’s tempting to put your feet up, it’s smarter to use extra time to your advantage and start learning a new skill.
But what kind of course should you enroll in? Browsing through job ads for positions you’d love should provide inspiration. Perhaps employers in your industry often look for candidates who can speak Chinese or use Adobe InDesign? Take the opportunity to gain these skills through your college, a community center, or another training venue. Even if you feel like you have a particular skill, like coding HTML, studying it formally will help you prove your proficiency to potential hiring managers. Short courses could be completed before you return, while longer ones may take all year. Consider your college workload when selecting a training course to ensure you don’t spread yourself too thin.
Your senior year can seem daunting as the prospect of graduating looms large. But with the right strategies in place, you can feel confident that you’re prepared for what lies ahead.