Keeping your students motivated on their career search

February 24, 2011 at 4:36 pm | Posted in Advising interns, career center, Finding internships, networking, Preparing interns, Summer internships, Time Management Skills | 1 Comment
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Jyl McLaughlin

It has been a long, cold winter for some of us.  For many, Spring Break Fever is in the near future.

Keeping in mind your students’ focus on academics, extracurricular and don’t forget social schedules, it will be helpful to mentor the concept of implementing a daily, weekly and monthly plan for students to maintain and keep motivated in their search.  Encouraging use of popular sites and a focus on one activity per day can motivate students and keep them focused.  The following sites have options for students to utilize to reboot their search energy:

1)      Internships.com:  Using the internship predictor catches students’ current interests, personality traits and preferences helping clarify career choice and best fit occupational areas. Once completed, sample job titles can be “clicked” to see current postings for potential interest and application.  These “live”, quick results allow a student to see that there are opportunities available for them.  Currently there are over 40K internship postings across the United States.

2)      LinkedIn.com: Students can begin professional networking here with friends and family as well as with professional association and alumni groups.  Many high schools, in addition to colleges and universities, have organized alumni associations willing to help out past and current members. Making a new connection with someone on a regular is always encouraging for students that feel they don’t have enough professional contacts in their network.

3)      Professional Associations: Most professional associations offer discounted or reduced rate student memberships. Being a part of a larger professional group can develop confidence in a student’s ability to be proactive in their career choice and participate in national or local conferences.  They also can identify networking opportunities and job listings related specifically to their career choice such as: CFA Institute, Federal Aviation Administration, American Marketing Association, and Association of Operations Management.  Better yet, students can add membership to their resume!

4)      Electronic Footprint: Remind your students to regularly check in on their electronic footprint.  Students can check their social media accounts, such as FaceBook and be sure they are not seen by the public or clean up any incriminating evidence that may be looked at as negative.  Simply “Googling” a name can help identify what presence one has on the internet.  Employers check this as they review potential candidates.  Keeping your private life private is an important concept for students accustomed to sharing much in public. This regular review can help students step “outside and look in” and focus on their marketability to employers.

Reminding students of best practices with popular sites helps them stay lean and focused while being proactive in their career planning and job searches.

Think SPRING!

This post was written by Jyl McLaughlin, a new tennis player, peacekeeper, and mom of two.  Find out more about Jyl and the rest of our bloggers on our new About Us page.

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