It can be a challenge knowing what steps to take before, during, and after college that will make you more marketable upon college graduation. Luckily, I am here to help! Even small changes can make a big difference to your resume, and therefore a big difference to a hiring manager. Below are 5 tips to help you land a great job once you receive your degree!
Secure a Long Term High School and College Job
Work history is one of the first things employers look at on a resume, even if it is unrelated experience. Long work history gives the employer proof that you are able to commit to a position. If you are in high school, try finding a job at a chain restaurant or store when you would be able to work at if/once you relocate for college. If you are currently in college, find a job even if it's working as little as 5 hours per week. This way you still have time for school work, but it also shows an employer that you can commit to a long term position while also balancing school.
Take on an Independent Research Project
A helpful addition to any scientific resume is research. If you are unable to land a summer research position, look for classes at your school that offers independent research as part of your credits. If you do gain or have experience with research, be sure to be as specific as possible when adding it to your resume.
Start Applying for Internships your Freshman Year
An internship is very beneficial to have on your resume as it shows employers that you have industry laboratory experience, instead of only academic laboratory experience. Industry laboratories follow specific guidelines/procedures and having exposure to those and stating it on your resume can be enough in itself to land you an interview.
Remember all of your Long Term College Laboratory Projects
As I stated earlier, research experience is always helpful for an employer to see on a resume. The more research experience you can add, the better. Gather your lab reports for all of your independent and group laboratory projects and add each one to your resume, just as you would add an employment position. Be sure to make it clear that it is a class project, and not a research position. Also, be sure to practice explaining what each project entailed, what was learned, and what the outcome was so you are able to easily convey the information to an employer.
Confidence is a key trait that employers look for in candidates. Review your knowledge of different laboratory techniques, instruments, and projects that are listed on your resume. That way, once you are asked questions regarding your laboratory experience, you are able to confidently respond with details regarding your knowledge and experience.
The job search after college graduation can be intimidating, which is why it is essential to set yourself up to succeed as much as possible!