Freshman

Thinking woman in front of chalkboard with question marks

Are you a college freshman? Use these tips to prepare for your career while you are in school.

If you are pursuing a college degree to gain the skills employers want, keep in mind that getting good grades is not enough to impress most employers. Follow the strategies listed below to better prepare and promote yourself to prospective employers.

Visit the Career Center

Don't wait until your final days at your college, university, or career school to visit the career center. Most postsecondary institutions offer assistance in choosing majors/programs, finding internships, locating employers, job search preparation and exploring graduate school options. Take advantage of this assistance to add "real world experience" to your resume. If you haven't already, use these tools and resources to research careers related to your major or program.

Aim for a Strong GPA

In many aspects, your GPA will determine if you will be able to pursue future career goals. Now is the time to start strong and establish a good GPA and keep it going. Go to class, schedule time to study, know what is expected of you and follow through. Meet with your professors and seek the a and begin to build that mentor relationship for a strong GPA.

Craft Your Professional Image

Develop a positive, professional online presence

When using social media or other online networking tools, your online persona will mold both professional and personal perceptions of you. Use sound judgment and consider the long-term ramifications when sharing any information online.

Create your college resume

To maximize impact, have your resume critiqued by a career counselor or administrator. You should also begin to develop a portfolio of academic and extracurricular projects and achievements that can be shared with potential employers to showcase your college experiences.

Participate in career activities

Potential employers expect job candidates to have related skills and experience, not just the higher education coursework, a good G.P.A., and other school achievements. To set yourself apart from other recent graduates, participate in internships, mentoring programs, and other work-based learning experiences. Even join a career-related student group, professional associations, or other groups that can help you to build your network, including online career-related groups. When possible, choose school projects related to trends and topics in your desired career. You can also participate in career-related volunteer opportunities, or part-time or summer employment related to your chosen career.