Before you begin your search, take a little time to reflect on who you are and where you are going. What type of position are you seeking and what experiences have prepared you for that position? Most college majors do not directly lead to a job title, and all majors are prepared to do a variety of things. Last year a mechanical engineer went to work in the financial district as a trader's assistant, while a marketing major accepted an offer from a public accounting firm as an auditor.
Your major provides some structure to your academic preparation, but it need not limit your options. It is okay to be open to a variety of opportunities and flexible about what type of position you will consider. A specific focus, however, lends structure to your search and keeps you proactive rather than reactive. So, think about the type of job or industry in which you would like to work, research the opportunities for someone with your skills and interests, and then go for it. The career development office will be happy to help you explore career paths, options and search strategies.
Please keep in mind that not all industries hire new employees in the same manner. Some recruit on college campuses, others hire former interns or promote support staff, and some post ads for the occasional opening.
Manhattan College currently uses JasperLink for on-campus recruiting. Students must submit their résumés electronically to those companies with which they’d like to interview. While employers from career fields such as education, nonprofits and leisure industries rarely interview on campus, your participation in the program will ensure that your résumé is on file whenever résumés are requested. Learn more about the on-campus recruiting program.
Over 70% of all jobs are filled through networking, making this one of the most effective strategies. Take advantage of all opportunities to meet professionals in you chosen field, including career fairs, alumni events, internships, student teaching and personal contacts. Conduct informational interviews and learn all that you can about the industry, field and position. Your network will keep you apprised of advances and opportunities in the field and may help you land the job of your dreams.
Companies post openings in a variety of ways. Internal postings may reach you through your network, but you will have to look a little harder for the external postings. While classified ads may be a long shot for many new grads, it is generally worth responding to interesting positions. Be sure to include a cover letter that is strong to help your résumé stand out from the rest of the applicants. Check the job listings on line at JasperLink.
After researching organizations for which you would like to work, send a targeted letter and résumé expressing your interest in employment. These letters should be very personalized and contain specific "hard sell” information about your qualifications and experience. The last paragraph should mention your intentions of following up on the cover letter with a phone call. It is in your best interest to maintain personal contact with those companies in which you are most interested.