How I Managed To Score A Full-Time Job Before Graduation
I know it seems impossible, but it can be done.
I heard many a time during my three-year arts degree at Melbourne University that I was going to find it pretty difficult to secure a job in my desired field of journalism.
So, you can understand my surprise when a unicorn disguised as a full-time journalism job floated into my lap come October of last year – one full month before I completed my final assessment.
“Impossible”, you yell at your screen. Wrong.
“You must have had connections”, you say. Wrong again.
It’s OK, I’ll show you exactly what I did to score that job before I graduated.
Work Wherever You Can
I’m talking internships, volunteering, getting involved at university. Whatever you can do to spice up your resume before you graduate is an absolute must. Not only that, you will start to meet people and connect with people that you wouldn’t meet by just doing your degree.
I completed internships at Broadsheet Melbourne and the Carlton Football Club before I graduated. Although many complain about the exploitative nature of internships, the experience I gained in those short-term roles were absolutely necessary in helping me score my job.
Before I did those internships I was writing for a low-profile music website, where my only payment was in the form of a concert ticket. This is a great idea for a writer looking for experience.
The skills you develop in these often casual, unpaid roles could quite possibly be skills you will one day use in your full-time job.
Another program I completed was the YMCA Youth Press Gallery, where I met a whole bunch of fantastic industry connections, young reporters and awesome people.
You can also use Facebook to join communities that share job postings, advice and news about your industry.
Whatever you can get your hands on, do it. Any experience is great, especially when you’re at university and don’t have time for full-time work yet.
Get Your Resume Looking Good
Stand out from the crowd with a spunking good resume. I use Novoresume, a site that can easily get your resume looking fantastic.
As a university student, chuck anything on there that will make you sound employable. You were on the Eurovision students society board? Put it on. You did some writing for your university magazine? Yep, chuck that on too.
You would be surprised at how many things are actually resume worthy when you’re still young and have no full-time experience.
Apply, Apply, Apply
With a couple months left in my degree, I was applying left right and centre for absolutely everything.
Before I scored my current job working in country Victoria for Fairfax Media, I applied for at least 20 other positions at Fairfax.
I didn’t get any of those, but I had put my resume into their system enough times that one day I received a phone call from someone at Fairfax asking if I wanted to go for the job I ended up getting.
People look at your applications, and although most of the time you might not be successful, the whole process is all about getting eyes on you.
Show yourself off and show people you’re motivated.
Get On LinkedIn
Ah yes, that mysterious social media platform. Quite possibly the only one you don’t have yet. Well, it’s time to get on it.
Warning, it can be stressful. You will no doubt start searching through all these wonderfully experienced people, doubting you will ever reach their lofty heights.
Get that out of your head and use it to connect with industry professionals and look at what paths other people have taken to get a similar job you want.
LinkedIn also shows you that despite what people say, jobs aren’t unicorns – many exist, and you can go and get one.