Job preparation must begin early

This year, May 1 brings the occasion that many students have been anxiously awaiting: graduation.

“The number of (students) who have applied for graduation is 1,300,” said University Registrar Michael James.

However, the journey to the stage was not a breeze for all of these students. Students have to prepare early to graduate and begin a successful career.

Part of early preparation includes not only planning for graduation, but also thinking ahead for employment. Several business experts and university advisers said students should begin making themselves marketable while in college.

According to a local engineering company, finding internships before graduating is part of the preparation process.

“Internships are very important when preparing for graduation because for students who have had internships, they will not be a typical graduate who has no experience in their area,” said Nicole Dunson, administrative assistant at Spectra Engineering and Research, Inc.

“Internships are always a plus… most companies look for students who will be able to produce as soon as being hiring and they won’t have to be trained,” she said.

Dunson also said the chances of being hired after graduation without any experience is zero to none.

Internships also help students adjust at their first job after graduating.

“Internships help students with their transition from a student to being an employee at their first job,” said Kristy Speers, account executive for the Herrle Communications Group.

“Secondly, it is very impressive for companies when they see a student was able to have an internship for multiple months,” Speers said. “This shows the company the student is responsible and has their priorities in order.”

Although internships are important for graduation, developing excellent resumes early are also a big factor for students, according to faculty at FAMU.

“Students should work to develop and enhance their resumes as soon as they enter college,” said Kirk Gavin, assistant dean for the School of General Studies.

“Resumes are important because it shows prospective companies the student’s progress in their professional arenas,” he said. Gavin also said resumes also reveal students’ goals and are basically the achievements of a student on paper.

It is also important for students to become involved in extra-curricular activities while they are in school, according to Gavin.

“Organizations and extra-curricular activities show a student’s leadership experience,” Gavin said.

“Leadership will show a company that when a particular student is faced with challenges, they have a well-rounded structure and will overcome those challenges,” he said.

Gavin also said advisers at FAMU are very professional and they will be aware of internships and employment for students after graduating.

“It is important for students to develop a strong and lasting relationship with their advisers,” Gavin said.

Although many students are concerned about employment after graduation, Gavin encourages students to pursue a master’s degree after graduating.

“I encourage all students to continue with their education and go to graduate school to develop and challenge themselves even more.”

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