With Centre College students now having to do career-prep remotely, the Center for Career & Professional Development (CCPD) is continuing their efforts to work with and support students when searching for jobs and internships.
“We created two new programs: Job Searching During a Recession—a panel of alumni who graduated during the recession of 2008 giving advice to current seniors about job searching during tough times, and an Instagram live Q&A where students submitted questions and CCPD career counselors were on hand to provide answers,” said Joy Asher, director of the CCPD.
“We’ve also added a few new resources onto our COVID-19 Resources and Response page, including a resource on Handshake featuring live updates on employers actively hiring in the system,” she continued.
According to Asher, one of the best things students can be doing right now is networking.
“Start with the Career Mentor Network, and use this time to learn more about and make connections in your career field(s) of interest,” she explained. “Talk to a wide array of alumni and others to learn as much as you can about the career field(s) and jobs you’re interested in, to get advice about the best paths to take to get there, and to make as many connections as possible. Then, when the economy does fully recover, you’ll have a wealth of useful information and numerous connections to call upon to help with your internship or job search.”
Asher also advises students if they’re not already on LinkedIn, to join now.
“Set up a profile with a strong summary statement,” she added. “Make connections and join groups. Use this to help you grow your network and connect with people outside of your immediate circle.”
Due to the current situation, Asher said students will have to be a little more flexible right now in what experiences they’re willing to take, especially with internships.
“It may be that you’ve never even considered a virtual or remote internship before, but those can still be enriching experiences,” she shared. “You might do a couple of micro-internships this summer. It may be that your dream job is not currently available due to shutdowns; so, you will need to be willing to consider a related job, which will still provide transferable skills that you can take and apply to your dream job once the economy opens back up.”
Right now, it’s important for students to remember that while no one knows exactly when everything will return to normal or what the new normal will be, there is so much they can be doing right now to position themselves—networking, gaining transferable skills, maybe even learning new skills.
“Be patient, as job searches may take a little longer than usual, and be willing to think outside the box a little on what types of jobs you are willing to take,” Asher concluded.
by Kerry Steinhofer
May 21, 2020