Staying career-oriented in the era of Netflix and COVID-19


Photo by Laura on Flickr

Brooke Salamone

Living in the era of technology definitely has its advantages. As COVID-19 has swept the globe making social distancing the new norm, technology has taken on an even more important role, keeping loved ones all connected. While technology is crucial for work and school, it can become addicting when trapped inside. Users are constantly surrounded by screens: phones, tablets, computers, smartwatches, televisions and more.

While homes become temporary offices, schools, movie theaters or cafes, it is easy to get comfortable in bed or on the couch. Laziness often takes over and many decide to just binge a new show or watch a new Netflix movie instead of taking that morning run around the block or doing yoga before bed. While streaming services are a great idea when looking to destress, this time is also crucial for practicing productivity.

It is important to remember to stay on top of school, work and other responsibilities that were taking place before the quarantine. While it may be rather difficult to plan or discover productive tasks, there is no need to fear. Below are a few tips below for University students meant to benefit their future career planning, graduation track and organization skills.

Try a Resume Revamp

Photo cred: Pxhere

This is the perfect time for University students to make some renovations on their resume or build one if they have not begun yet. Regardless of job experience, the number of internships obtained or on-campus involvement, a quick polish to the resume can never hurt.

Quick tip: Depending on the career or the job University students are applying for, it often helps to have different versions of a resume. For example, for someone pursuing a job in graphic design, it may be a good idea to have a standard resume as well as a creative one to showcase different abilities. A resume is more than just a piece of paper; it should truly shine a light on the qualities that will allow students to stand out. For students interested in resume templates, Canva offers a wide selection available to download.

Career Services at the University is also here to lend a hand to students looking to build their resume. University students can book an appointment with an expert advisor in their major who will guide them through the process. Another great resource is the University’s handbook on resume and cover letter writing. Check it out here.

Due to COVID-19 and the University closure, Career Services has moved to remote appointments and workshops. To create these appointments and sign up for events, log onto Handshake with University credentials. Once online, click “Career Center” then “Appointments.” For events, click on “Events,” “View Event,” and then “RSVP.” University students may also call at (212) 346–1950.

Polish LinkedIn instead of scrolling through that Insta feed

It is easy to spend the day scrolling through social media platforms such as Instagram, Snapchat, Twitter and TikTok. Set aside an hour a day and add LinkedIn to that scrolling list.

LinkedIn has many options that are beneficial to explore. University students should take a stab at editing their profile page. During downtime at home, get dressed up and take an updated professional photo. Make sure the background and lighting are neutral.

When the resume work is completed, students can add that to their profile page and make sure all the other information displayed on the homepage is accurate and up to date. Recruiters are always researching LinkedIn pages, so the more up to date and professional the profile is, the better.

Career Services also can help University students with curating their LinkedIn profile. Follow the steps above to make an appointment.

Reach out to past colleagues or professors

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Connections are always the key to success. According to a LinkedIn global study, 70 percent of people in 2016 were hired at a company where they had a connection.

This is the perfect time to send an email to a previous professor or coworker who could help. It never hurts to check in and let them know about future career goals during these times. This may even showcase a level of dedication and professionalism.

Build a Trello or fill out an old fashioned planner

Filling out a planner is beloved by many and also hated by others in the age of technology where a digital calendar can track it all. Writing things down is proven to help memory function. Consider ordering a planner online and give this a whirl while at home.

For people who prefer online platforms, Trello is a free organizational platform to check out. Trello allows users to create boards, lists and more while also sharing them with others.

Below is an example of a planned out Trello board:

Image provided by Brooke Salamone

Make goal lists to check off

Nothing is more fulfilling than putting a big green check next to completed tasks on a to-do list.  Now may be the perfect time to create a list of long or short term goals. There are many platforms online to create this list, or step outside of the box and make it an at-home arts and crafts project.

Creating positive goals is a healthy pass time to boost productivity and work towards something important. Goals could be as simple as picking up a certain class for the Fall 2020 semester or as remarkable as receiving the job of a lifetime post-graduation.

Why this all matters

At the end of the day, it is best to make the most out of every situation and practice healthy habits. During this time of quarantine, take a shot at some of these listed tips above to help build productivity and keep a goal-oriented mindset. Most of all, stay safe and healthy!