A Senior’s Guide to Post-Graduation

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“What are you doing after graduation?” Those few dreaded words have been hunting seniors, since the dawn of time. 

Has your time at A&T has come to a close? Are you not quite sure what the next step is? Has your GPA suffered an injury on the count of that required economics class? Never thought of yourself as the grad school type? Has your mom asked you about that position you applied for more often than you would like her to? Wishing you had not spent so many summers lounging, while your friends interned? No worries! 

Certainly not everyone is cut out for graduate school and not everyone knows exactly where they will be working post graduation. Do not fret. In the meantime, here are three strategies for conquering life after graduation: 

1. Join professional organizations: Get involved with the professional version of an organization that relates to your major. For example, if you are a journalism student, join your local chapter of the National Association of Black Journalists as opposed to a student chapter. This will give you exposure to real professionals, with real experience and real connections to get you a real job. 

Your network is your net worth. Connecting with professionals is very important in your quest for success. You never know who’s the bridge between you and your next opportunity.

2. DIY: Do it yourself. Do not wait for a career opportunity to come knocking on your door. Create an opportunity for yourself. A blog is a great way to brand yourself and build your credibility. A blog is also a great way to flaunt your talents. 

For example, if you are a fashion merchandising and design major, you could blog about street styles or even start a youtube channel on which you give weekly style tips. Once you have a strong follo

wing you could collaborate with clothing brands and do product reviews. Create a window of opportunity for yourself. Blogging will help you build a network and a following, no matter what your desired profession or major is. 

It also adds another layer of field experience to your resume. Being able to run a website or youtube channel, write blogs regularly, keep people interested, and relay useful information are all marketable skills that are gained while blogging.

3. Clean House: Get your digital house in order. Do a clean sweep of all of your online accounts and social media. Create a LinkedIn account and update it regularly. The Internet has opened the floodgates of post-grad opportunities, but you have to be ready to receive them. 

What does your Twitter and Instagram bio read? Are there one too many emojis and hashtags? Is there anything in your bio about the profession that you are in? Are you sharing information relevant to your desired career field? Does your followers even know your major? Then you need to revamp. We know Nike for sportswear and Paris for romance, what should the world know you for? 

Start there and answer that question via your social media and online accounts. You would be surprised at the number of employers and companies are out there looking for the skills you have to offer, but they cannot find you because your social media is littered with content that does not relate to your career and your bio says nothing about what you do professionally. Clean it up!

—Email Shelby at [email protected] and follow us on Twitter @TheATRegister

  • Shelby Christie, Contributor