Experience key when getting a job after graduation

Julio Cesar Chavez, Staff Reporter

Recent reports show college graduates are facing a growing job market, as the unemployment gap between them and the general population continues to shrink. In the middle of an expansionary phase in the current economic cycle, businesses are investing more into new employees but those spots are not easy to get. As to how students can be more marketable, Career Services Director Betsy Castro had some advice.

“Having a strong GPA, developing those networks and knowing how to communicate will really help out,” she said.

One of the most important tools to land a job, Castro said, was having work experience during school.

“Internships have a neat correlation to getting jobs,” Castro said. “It allows students to network.”

According to a job outlook survey from National Association of Colleges and Employers, nearly all the employers who completed the survey preferred hiring employees who had previous work experience.

The same study showed men and women had similar chances of landing an internship, around 65 percent.

It’s not just limited to internships.

Castro explained any kind of work experience will help people learn on the job and form relationships with people in the field. Those relationships could end up being the key to landing a position once the student graduates.

“Typically nursing students have jobs after graduation and that’s usually because of their practicums,” said Castro, citing information taken from the Spring 2015 Career Services Graduation Survey.

The survey, given to graduates before their commencement ceremonies, is one of the university’s most important tools in knowing how to help students, Castro said. She explained the survey answers let the university know how much it should push students to look for work experience and better their job searches.

The survey shows more than 60 percent of students who graduated in the spring of 2015 either already had a job or were looking for one, while 25 percent planned on going on to graduate school.

The survey doesn’t only help out remaining students. However, those who fill the survey out may benefit from the same piece of paper they turn in.

“If they say yes [to looking for jobs after graduating], we reach out to them and let them know they can still use our services free or charge for two semesters,” Castro said.

Services like resume reviews, mock interviews and even professional clothing rental.

Looking at the recent data, Castro agrees the job market will remain lucrative for graduates.

“It’s steady. It’s been very steady with getting offers,” Castro said.

Julio Cesar Chavez may be reached [email protected]