Bulldog Bites

News and Views from the University of Redlands

You graduated. So, now what?

A woman in a grey blazer smiles and stands outside near the hall of letters.
Associate Director for Career Strategy & Integration Lauren Wooster helps provide students and alumni with practical career advice. (Photo by Taylor Matousek '18)

This year’s graduates entered the workforce during a once in a 100-year pandemic, along with an economic recession, a host of canceled internships, and Zoom fatigue. Now what? That was the question addressed in an event held on July 8, sponsored by the Office of Career & Professional Development (OCPD).

Recent graduates with majors ranging from political science to environmental studies attended the webinar to hear advice from Associate Director for Career Strategy & Integration Lauren Wooster.

Here are some takeaways from the discussion.

The world changes quickly

Sure, unemployment is 5.9%, far above early 2020 numbers, but we’re seeing a rebound. In fact, there have been 850,000 jobs added since June! And, better yet, wages are climbing due to a worker shortage, offering some job seekers the upper hand in negotiating salary. But before you pound pavement, get ready to wow those employers.

Write a new résumé for every job

Many applicants try to jam every skill and accomplishment onto a single page or, worse, three pages. Here’s the secret––tailor your application to each job. Review the qualifications and highlight every skill and task you exceed in. Then use the same keywords in your application, along with how you’ve excelled in each responsibility. Your application will breeze through their job filters and put your application in front of an actual human. And then said human will realize what a perfect fit you are.

The interviewer likes you on paper

If you get an interview, you are about to meet someone who thinks you’re incredible––on paper anyway. They just need to see how you act, sound, dress, and respond to a few questions or tasks. But don’t blow it with overconfidence just because you were called––the same goes for the first date, but that’s for someone else’s advice column. Rather, practice in advance. You can book one of OCPD’s renowned mock interviews or try StandOut, a free resource that uses AI software to give you tips on your interview performance.

Unearth the hidden job market

Ever hear of an Apple Pie McFlurry? And what does it have to do with getting a job? Much like secret menus offering mouthwatering options you never heard of, there’s an unadvertised job market. In fact, 80% of jobs are found on the hidden job market, and they’re obtained by networking! Use our LinkedIn guide or conduct an informational interview.

You’re on your way

With a fresh degree and a can-do attitude, you’re on your way to achieve incredible feats. It may happen quickly, it may happen years from now, or it may happen without you realizing it. No matter how your career unfolds, remember we’re here for you until the day you retire or we’re all replaced by robots.

Learn more about the Office of Career & Professional Development.