How to Ensure Your Own Postgrad Job Placement

Beth Dumbauld

By Brittany Hege

Whether you're currently working toward your degree through StraighterLine's affordable online courses or taking the more traditional classroom route, one thing's for sure: you can never do too much to increase the likelihood of snagging a postgrad job.

But don't just take our word for it. Editor at large of The Chronicle of Higher Education and LinkedIn user Jeff Selingo's recent article, “Five Ways to Improve the Job Prospects of Recent College Grads” has been gaining traction with social media users for the past few weeks, as unemployment rates have proven to be a hot-button issue in the recent presidential election.

Inspired by Jeff's “how-to’s” for putting more grads to work, we offer you a few suggestions.

1. Look toward start-ups.

That's right, don't just pay attention to the big Fortune 500 companies. Small businesses and start-ups offer ample room for career growth, and often times (if you work hard enough), you can create your own position from the ground up. Notice a new IT company doesn't have a steady feed of Tweets? Why not pitch a savvy proposal that places you as the new firm's Social Media Specialist. And ta-dah, unemployed no longer!

2. Take a chance on yourself.

According to Jeff, “The period right after college graduation is a time in life when people are probably most willing to take risks.” After making a few Baltimore connections and saving up for years, I waved my parents goodbye and moved to the city. Scary? Yes. Worth it? Absolutely. And if you're really up for making career moves, consider creating your own startup by connecting with venture capitalists, mentors and places to work at startup accelerators like The Fort in Washington, DC.

3. Ask for in-depth career information.

Don't simply rely on flimsy job-placement statistics to ensure your work future. When your career advisor presents you with a pamphlet that reads something like, “Six months after graduations, 88% of students are employed in their field of study,” be sure to ask for more detailed employment data. And if he or she can't do that for you, we suggest online fact checking like we did for our February blog post on falsified college data.

These are just a few ways to improve your postgrad job prospects, although you don’t have to wait until you have your degree to get started. In fact, many StraighterLine students are already working while taking online college courses – if that’s you, the time to work on your next job is right now.

For more suggestions, check out Jeff Selingo's article on LinkedIn and feel free to share your own job-related ideas in our comments section.

About the author . . . . Fresh out of art school and obsessed with digital music, Brittany uses her love of sound to inject her writing with rhythm and just the right amount of rhyme. When she's not tweeting, blogging, or facebooking, she's either at a local concert or playfully poking fun of reality TV stars (and enjoying every second of it).

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