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Sunday, June 26, 2022

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SDSU’s estimated 10,300 graduates head into the workforce as part of a cohort of nearly two million new bachelor’s degree recipients nationwide. SDSU’s estimated 10,300 graduates head into the workforce as part of a cohort of nearly two million new bachelor’s degree recipients nationwide.
 


Tips for Job-Seeking 2019 Graduates

SDSU’s executive director of Career Services offers advice on career development for those entering the job market.
By SDSU News Team
 

Focus. Network. Find a mentor.

The class of 2019 enters a job market where the rules of recruiting have changed, said James Tarbox, executive director of San Diego State University’s Career Services. Even in a strong employment market, many graduates will need to re-tool how they prepare to manage their careers.

SDSU’s estimated 10,300 graduates head into the workforce as part of a cohort of nearly two million new bachelor’s degree recipients nationwide.

For a head start, Tarbox offers three tips as a career development guide: 

1. Identify your career focus and be flexible with your strategy

What will your career portfolio look like, and how will you succeed in developing this portfolio? 

Decide whether you will pursue full-time employment, or part-time employment while preparing to qualify for a full-time job or graduate school via additional course work, an internship, or qualifying to take an entrance exam.

Perhaps you are committed to being an entrepreneur. The path from here could include seeking guidance from a mentor, working with friends who will soon be business partners to make a pitch for funding, or taking a class to learn how to promote a brand.

2. Become career ready and commit to this as a lifelong process

Career readiness is a process that begins well before graduation. For many, it’s pursuing and completing an internship.

Many students build a network via involvement in student organizations that continue as a professional association. One example: The Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM) has an on-campus group, and when students enter the profession, SHRM becomes their go-to professional association.

Students can secure mentors via involvement in the Aztec Mentor Program or similar activities that connect students to professionals outside of the university. 

The reality of these pursuits is they allow students to assess and prepare themselves for entry into a profession. These pursuits are also time-consuming, and some students may not be able to commit to them before they graduate. In any event, these pursuits should be a priority.

3. Understand the university recruiting landscape has changed

Online job sites have value, but are just a beginning, since employers receive thousands of applicants via these systems. Also, employers use many online resources—be sure you have a LinkedIn account and that your profile demonstrates your potential.

Employers also are investing in direct contact with students. For some employers, career fairs are part of a broader overall strategy where they visit campus for two to three days, offering smaller sessions at the career center, networking via a student organization, and by-invitation, on-campus interviews. 

For graduates, know that the interpersonal emphasis means competence in communication is essential. Additional must-have skills: analytical thinking, decision making and industry-relevant technical skills.

For May 2019 graduates just starting career development work, SDSU Career Services offers a month-long series in June. Join us and learn how to manage your career development.