You’re doing it. You’re really doing it. You made it out of high school and now you’re killing it in college. You’re on track to graduate in four years and you’re feeling good about your major… Or you’re on track for a six-year stay at college because you keep switching your major, and you’re not even sure this most recent one suits you. But man, you gotta get out of here eventually, so you’ll settle for any degree at this point. When you’re done with this whole college thing, finding a job will be no problem… Or will it?
Sorry to bring you down, but the world isn’t so simple. Finishing college isn’t impressing anyone anymore – just ask Shania. A lot of people finish college every year. Dozens at least. You have to find a way to separate yourself from the pack. As a company that has ITS VERY OWN BLOG, we know something about separating ourselves from the pack.
So, we’ve put together a list with suggestions on what you can do to build your resumé as a college student.
Join a student group or organization
Student groups are a brilliant idea. They have meetings and do various responsible, adult-like things. You’ll meet like-minded folks who will encourage each other to participate in activities. Whether you join a student newspaper or a dance troupe or an association related to your future profession, the experiences will be valuable and future employers will ask you questions about what you learned in those groups. Then you’ll be able to say things like, “I learned how to work with a team and be accountable to others.”
And then when you leave the interview, your future boss will be like, “WOW. What a go-getter!” Hopefully. That’s what we’re aiming for at least.
Get a part or full time job
This is an obvious one. Having had a job is a great entryway to getting another job. Employers don’t like seeing resumé gaps. They’ll understand that you were in college, but if your resumé is without a job and Jimmy Other Applicant is also vying for this position is equal to you in every way, except he also had a job, he’s going to get the job.
Even if you just get a job somewhere on campus, it’s probably going to help your odds. It’s not about the specific experience, it’s about the idea of being able to do something consistently. Having a job in college shows that you have some ability to manage your time and work on multiple projects at once – important in today’s evolving working world.
If you need help with starting your college job search, check out this blog post.
Volunteer as much as possible
Volunteering is a great habit that is easy to start developing in college or even before college. Volunteers are selfless people who put others before themselves, and every company desires as many selfless people as possible.
The selfless are the people who make the world go round.
Get LinkedIn recommendations
LinkedIn recommendations are the new hand-written letters of recommendation. Having a former professor you helped out with a side project on the weekends throw a couple of words your way on LinkedIn is a great way to show your value to the outside world. It doesn’t take much effort on their end and most people are willing.
Potential future employers are going to be looking at your LinkedIn profiles (and all your other social profiles), so keep that page up to date with all of your activities and successes.
Get good grades
And the last suggestion for making sure your resume stands out from all the rest – make sure you get good grades. Like really good grades. Having a good cumulative GPA shows a potential employer that you mean business and that you know your stuff.
Plus, you’re already paying tens of thousands of dollars to go to college – might as well learn something.
More Resumé Tips
We don’t have the market cornered on resumé tips for college students. So check out some templates and other ideas at CollegeGrad.com, FastWeb.com, and Synonym.com