Listed below are strategies that have been proven to aid job seekers in their quest. Keep in mind that these techniques only work as well as the effort you put into them. Stay focused, stay positive, and most important, be sure to check in with an AACE Advisor if you have any questions!
"It's not what you know, it's who you know." more correctly, "It's who knows what you know." Meeting people in your career field is key to moving forward in that field, and you need to let people who you are and what you are looking for.
The more contacts you have, the better your chances are of hearing about a job or internship opening. Making those contacts can take several forms - introductions through friends and colleagues and joining professional associations in your field, to conducting informational interviews or joining a professional networking site like LinkedIn. Your goal is to establish a network of people who will network with and for you.
The On-Campus Interview (OCI) program provides students with an opportunity to interview with employers from business, industry, and government agencies for full-time and part-time positions and internships. Interviews are conducted in Academic Advising and Career Education (SA 2300) for the convenience of both students and employers. Employers typically use this opportunity as a screening process and will call candidates they're interested in for a 2nd on-site interview.
Obtaining an internship and volunteering in the community are direct, hands-on experience where you will develop many skills required for the jobs you seek. Make sure you will be doing the things you want to be doing. Experience is experience, it doesn't mean paid. Frequently, students are hired full-time as a result of a successful internship or volunteering. Volunteer positions can help you gain experience in a field when you have no prior experience while giving you the opportunity to network and learn from seasoned professionals on the job.
Stay informed about and in touch with all sites likely to list job vacancies in your field. We encourage you to regularly search for opportunities on PioneerJobs, this list is by no means comprehensive. Indeed and LinkUp are examples of job search sites that compile job postings from multiple resources, cutting down the time you need to search different sites dramatically. Be persistent and don't get discouraged.
Identify employers you would like to work for, send targeted cover letters with your resume. Do not send a generic cover letter if you want an interview. Follow-up with a phone call - or even a face-to-face visit.
Employment Agencies, or Third Party Agencies, find jobs for people looking for work, and also find candidates for organizations looking to fill positions. Policies differ for each agency, so do your research and find out all the facts before you sign up. You may need to pay a fee and/or sign a long-term contract that may restrict you from working permanently with a company for a period of time. Research the reputation of the firm and always read the fine print before signing anything.
That being said, this could be an excellent way to gain valuable experience, test out careers that you're still not sure about, and to network with professionals in your field of interest.
Be sure to tell everyone you know that you're looking for a job - and what field you're interested in. The more people who know what you are looking for, the greater your chances of connecting with a potential job opening. Be sure your friends, family, and classmates have a copy of your resume; you never know who they might meet the next day. Don't be shy - people who like you will be more willing to help you in any way they can.