Post Graduation Survival Kit


Brooke Salamone

The countdown on University televisions let students know that it’s almost that time of year again, where college seniors across the globe are preparing to put on their caps and gowns and walk across the stage to receive their diplomas. But not just any University student across the globe can say they received their diploma in Radio City Music Hall.

This time of year is both exciting and nerve-wracking for students who have an abundance of things to check off their pre-graduation check list. Yet during this time of chaos, the thought of life post-graduation seems to linger and haunt the brain. To ease this worry, and take something off the list of stressors, The Pace Press has conducted a short survival kit for students to use post-graduation. In this kit, we will highlight some key tips for students who plan on staying in New York post graduation, and are navigating the world of job searching.

Continue to hone goals and a create a game plan

Creating goals and keeping organized never goes out of style. Perhaps the most important step after graduation is to take a deep breath, and write down a list of goals for the future. While this may seem obvious, it can be used as an important step in helping the brain.

Writing down goals is something that you have probably done since grade school, but it will help remind you what you are working towards the future. It also can help to motivate you to act, especially if it’s in writing.

“I am a strong believer that structure and organization is key to staying on the right path to success,” says University senior Allie O’Donoghue. “I think you find that when you write things down, whether that be inputting into your phone your schedule in your calendar, or a reminder to pick something up at the store, or even a small to-do list, that you have a better sense of control over your life, and that gives you more confidence, which makes it easier to accomplish those higher goals that you have. Goals — whether they be professional, personal, or social — are important because they keep you motivated to better yourself and enhance your life, especially post-graduation.”

Continue to practice social and networking skills

Perhaps one of the most important things to keep in mind post-graduation, is that networking never ceases. Keep making connections and utilizing all the resources that you were given during the time at college. Do not forget that you still have access to Handshake and Career Services even after you’ve left the University.

Handshake is a great way for students to apply to jobs post-graduation. While all online job searching engines can be helpful, Handshake is often customized with job opportunities specific to University students and alumnae.

In addition, reaching out to alumnae from the University can be a great way to find an opportunity. Search the company you wish to work for on LinkedIn and connect with any University alumnae that work there.

“I am currently the alumnae chair of the Sigma Delta Tau Sorority on campus, so I strongly believe that continuing to network with alumnae is critical,” shares University senior Chole Vasapoli. “In this role, we connect primarily through Facebook and email. I also created Facebook groups based on majors or career interests so there is an SDT Arts and Entertainment group and a Political Science group etc. There are a lot of alumnae through this that are super willing and excited to help out with whatever they can and use the sorority connection to help out current sisters even if they don’t directly know them. It’s encouraged and important to always continuing networking even post-graduation.”

Although your time at the University may be complete, keeping in touch with your professors is always an option. Professors are a great resource for students searching for job opportunities anywhere and everywhere. This is where those connections you built will really start to come in handy.

What to do if you cannot find a job right away

There is no denying that finding a job can be extremely difficult. In a such a competitive environment, it’s definitely stressful to join the large group of students in need of a full-time job. If you are struggling to find a job in your field, maybe try to search for a paid internship position for recent college graduates. Certain companies also have programs for students post-graduation that can help bring graduates a step closer to a job offer, like the NBC Page Program.

Be sure to keep a clean social media page

While this tip may seem obvious, in the age of social media, it is crucial to keep a pristine image online, especially while job searching. Having a clean social media feed can set you apart from the crowd. Companies are increasingly doing background checks on individuals prior to hiring them, and screening through social media platforms plays a huge part in this.

According to CareerBuilders,  70 percent of employers use social media to screen candidates before hiring. As this number is increasing, it is important to keep in mind that what you post online matters.

So keep it professional. The more professional you are, the better your online image is portrayed to companies that you are considering to work for.

“Prior to meeting an individual for the first time, social media is the only way potential employers can get a glimpse of who you are,” shares University senior Emily Conklin. “So you want to be sure you put your best foot forward!”

With all the above resources, University seniors can now put on their caps and gowns and focus on walking across the stage of Radio City Music Hall this May. In the mix of all the madness, take a step back and smell the roses. Look back at all you have accomplished during your time at college, and pat yourself on the back. Be proud, stand tall, and always remember how far you have come.