No matter what holiday you celebrate, many of you will be reconnecting with friends and family during the winter break from school. This may be a time to catch your breath from finals, get some rest and rejuvenate for the spring semester. Take some time to reflect on the accomplishments of this semester and all that you have achieved.
However, even while taking a break from school you can continue to keep your job search and career planning going. The job/internship search process is lengthy and may include phone screen interviews, crafting numerous targeted cover letters/resumes, multiple rounds of interviews, sending thank you letters and then waiting for the final decision from employers. The take away from this is that you need to have a plan AND looking for work can take a serious time commitment.
Here are some ways to keep your job search active during the holiday break:
- RE-connect with your network: The holidays are a great time to reconnect with your network of friends, classmates, family members, professors, former co-workers, and new contacts. Since a majority of jobs and internships are gained through one’s personal network of contacts, this is a great time to reach out to those in your life. Send them a card, an email, or even a Facebook message to update them on your recent accomplishments or just to say hello. Remember, networking is relationship building so don’t forget to inquire about their recent developments as well.
- Attend holiday gatherings: You never know where your next networking contact could come from. Take advantage of holiday gathering opportunities by preparing a few key points about yourself in case you bump into someone who may be able to help you. Often these key points are referred to as “Your one minute commercial” and can be used whenever you are in networking opportunities.
- Maintain your resume: Whether you are looking to start a resume or refine your existing one, take some time to identify what you think needs to be updated. It could be as simple as adding that recent class project, internship, volunteer opportunity, or work with a student organization. Wherever you are with your resume, the break between semesters is a great time to reflect upon your accomplishments while they are still fresh in your mind. See our calendar for drop-in resume critique hours during the break.
- Identify your plans for the summer: Did you know that employers often recruit for summer interns in the winter? It’s never too early to be thinking about your future career aspirations. You may be looking for a full-time job, an internship, or a summer job. It will be helpful to identify your next steps in laying out a plan to meet your summer needs. View our calendar or contact us to find out how to get started.
- Don’t delay your search: Just because it’s the holiday season, it doesn’t mean that you should be taking a break from your job search. While it may be true that hiring will happen during the new year, the candidates who will get hired are the ones who met employers earlier. Consider strategies like informational interviews and targeting your top organizations through social media to get you in touch with prospective employers.
- Take advantage of the Career Center: In addition to the many services that the Career Center offers, we can also help you answer some of the questions that your friends and family may ask. (hint: Employers may ask these questions too!)
The Career Center can help you answer questions like:
- “What can I do with my major?”
- “How can I find job resources for by major?”
- What are my short and long term career aspirations?
We wish you the best with your career development and aspirations and congratulations on finishing the semester!