5 Things You Need To Do In College Before You Graduate

Your time in college goes by fast. Don’t look back with regret thinking you could of done more in school.  The future is something we are all headed towards.  With a little bit of direction, planning, and hard work you can reach the destination you want…and not just end up where circumstance dumps you.  In the words of Golda Meir, “one must govern the clock, not be governed by it.”  Take control and get the most of your college experience with these 5 suggestions.

1) Meet with a Career Counselor

Too many students wait until May of their senior year to meet with a career counselor.  That’s a big mistake when paying thousands for an education.  The Calendar of Events that your career center offers is your resource guide for each semester. Start being active and involved with your career center from your Freshman year.  Sit with a career counselor and map out a blue print. Attend networking events, get an alumni mentor, go to career seminars and career fairs.  Motivated and active students land jobs faster than those that procrastinate.

2) Do an Internship

Get a pre-professional hands on learning experience related to your major while in school. In other words–do an internship! Universities have lists of internships one can do each semester and in the summer. I suggest doing a few as an undergraduate to build your resume.  This will let you explore various job titles and industries. In doing so you will also be building a network to tap into for job opportunities later on down the road. So take advantage of job postings listed through your campus.

3) Build your Network

After you graduate is the wrong time to start your LinkedIn profile or to look around to see what network you can tap into for job-leads. Build a network consistently over the years by adding the professionals you meet during your internships and from the career related events you attend each semester.  Maintain these relationships over the years.

4) Leave the Country

Colleges offer study abroad courses related to your major where you can travel outside of the U.S. and learn another perspective in your field of interest. Seize these opportunities. A trip outside of the U.S. gives you a chance to add to your resume and makes for great stories to share in an interview.  Most companies now deal with a diverse clientele, and an international experience just showcases that you too have an awareness that can benefit their global agenda. For those strapped for cash, doing a study abroad trip while in college can often be supported by the university’s financial aid. It’s a great way to see another part of the world.

5) Learn How to Balance

Learn now to balance your time and resources while in college. If you can’t do it now, how are you going to do it when you are working a 49 hour work week and have a family? You should have a strategy for how many hours you designate for study, career related activities, and of course friends-family-fun.  Whether it’s your own money you are spending, or your parent’s, create a budget and learn to stick with it while in school. It’s easy to let things get out of control. But with a plan, you can lay a foundation that will help you manage your time and resources for the rest of your life.

Wishing all of those transitioning into college, great success in their career journey! Follow Career Transitions Guide on  TwitterFacebookPinterest

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