Luke Persichetti on Securing a Career After Graduating

Graduating from college or university is an exhilarating accomplishment that represents the closure of a long and storied educational career and the beginning of what is hopefully a long and storied work career. For many unfortunate graduates however, it isn’t working out that way, at least initially. Saddled with massive student loans and thrust into an unforgiving and over saturated job market, many struggle to find the kind of meaningful employment that justifies their costly diplomas.

About 40% of recent college graduates are underemployed and having difficult landing good positions in their chosen careers. The reason why can be found in the growing rumblings among hiring managers and executives, who increasingly feel like colleges aren’t giving students the skills they need to be competitive. Recent graduate Luke Persichetti lists several ways college grads can improve their chances of career success coming out of school and make themselves stand out from the pack of applicants.

Don’t Wait Until After You Graduate to Line Up Work

Research from the National Association of Colleges and Employers shows that the average grad who doesn’t have a job lined up after college will spend 7.4 months finding one. Surprisingly, the vast majority of students aren’t even trying to line up work yet by their final fall semester.

It’s a great time to do so, as recruiters for major employers begin seeking out available candidates. While paid work may not be available for students who have yet to graduate, internships that can turn into paid work down the line might and shouldn’t be scoffed at.

College students should also begin making their presence felt at job fairs and seek out connections from their professors, on top of more traditional job-hunting methods.

Don’t Settle for a Dead-End Job

It’s easy to understand why grads who need to pay their bills (and the mounting interest on their student loans) are often driven to accept paying work which they are overqualified for shortly after graduation. This is a dangerous proposition though, as about half of the grads who start their employment career this way is still underemployed a decade later.

As challenging as it may be financially, grads are encouraged to hold out for entry level work at an employer that could offer them valuable career advancement down the line, even if that position pays less than being a barista at Starbucks.

Luke Persichetti — Mastering the Use of Resume Keywords

Major corporations must sift through hundreds of resumes from talented applicants for just about any job posting and are increasingly turning to AI to do so. These programs search for keywords and phrases that correspond with what the company’s needs are.

Rather than sending a default resume for every job, grads should be tailoring their resume to include these keywords. Naturally, the keywords will vary by job type and company, but should be relatively easy to figure out by studying what the position entails and what the company’s core values are.