The University Network

Job Hunting Treasures I Found While Supporting Sustainable Development Goal 8

I recently read an article titled “Sustainable Development Goals: The Unspoken Job for College Students” on TUN, and it made me reflect upon what is important in life and what we, as college students, can do to make the world a better place. I encourage you to read this article and choose one goal that you are willing to commit to.

Everyone should be able to find an SDG that s/he feels passionate about. There are 17 sustainable goals aimed at: (i) ending extreme poverty, (ii) fighting inequality and injustice, and (iii) fixing climate change. These goals will make the world a much better place by 2030, if everyone gets behind them. Keep in mind that each of us can make a difference.

The Sustainable Development Goals – select one you wish to support!

I chose to commit to Sustainable Development Goal No. 8, which promotes sustainable economic growth through employment. I chose this goal because I am surrounded by students who are looking for jobs, or could use some help getting one, and I thought I could do something to help them.

Once I chose my goal, I proceeded to learn as much as I could about the local job market and what students need to do to land a job.  I then offered my job search advice to friends and friends-of-friends, who were on the job hunt. In doing so, I found two important job resources that students often overlook.

1) College Career Centers

READ: 8 Things Your College Career Center Can Do For You

Only a few college students that I have helped had already met with the Career Center at their school. Most often, the excuse is that they were too busy with work, studying and personal life. This is a shame because Career Centers are there for the sole purpose of helping students find a job. They have significant resources and can save you a lot of time in your job hunt.  Here are several reasons why every student should get to know their Career Center:

  • They will help you find a job that aligns with your interests. There is nothing worse than taking a job that you hate. You want to do something that you will look forward to doing everyday. The best way of finding that job is to make yourself known at the Career Center in your college, so the career counselors will know “who” you are. They need to know your personality so that they can help you find that career fit. It is important for them to know what you are studying and what you want from life. This does not happen overnight; you should go to the Career Center as a freshman and stay in touch with your career counselors throughout college.
  • They can recommend courses that will make you more marketable. Once the career counselors learn all about you and know who you are, they may recommend courses that make you more marketable.
  • They have a current database of internships and jobs. Career Centers will have a list of potential employers that you can look at. They should also have background information and other critical information about the employers and what they are looking for, which can be equally as important to you. If the career counselors know you well, they can help you determine which companies are a better fit for you. Career counselors who know you well, and are confident of what you can bring to a job, may also feel comfortable enough to introduce you to alumni or other contacts they have cultivated. You can’t get this type of intel, or personal introduction, from any of the online services.
  • They will help you with entry-level salary calculations. One of the biggest concerns when looking at a job offer after graduation is the compensation. What should I get paid? How does this compare to other companies? Career centers should be able to help you with this so that you will have realistic expectations.

So schedule an appointment with your Career Center today!

2) Alumni Associations

Alumni associations are a great way to network yourself into a job. Many students overlook this in their job hunt – don’t be one of them!

Becoming active with your alumni association is a great way to land a job or internship. You will also build your networking skills in the process. The alumni who are active in such associations want you to succeed. The alumni networking events are not only a place to get a free meal, but a forum for you to find a mentor.

Some schools even have online alumni communities, which makes it so easy and convenient to connect. Houston Community College has one, for example, so students can join the alumni association with a few clicks. Where there is an online alumni community, there is no excuse for not joining and tapping into a valuable source.  

Don’t procrastinate; get involved with your alumni association today!

I hope you find these tips useful in your job hunt. Good luck!