Your college years are pivotal. Not only are they the time when you truly figure out who you are and more about what you want, but they’re also the time you should be starting your career – even if you don’t yet have a full-time job. This is a lot to ask out of the four or so years you’re there, but with the right focus and strategy you can make all that effort feel seamless. The goal is to push through now so that you’re set up and ready to take the world by storm once you graduate. To help you with that strategy, use this guide:
Continue to Check in That the Credits and Program are a Good Fit
If you start to feel like your education is a waste, then you need to immediately re-strategize and work out how you can make the change. Many students, for example, will change majors or even universities. Over 700,000 students transfer outright every year, so you won’t be alone if you feel like the college itself doesn’t off you the tools you need to succeed. After all, the quality of your education is just one factor you need to consider. The societies, clubs, and services the university in question offers will also play a huge part in your future career efforts. If you do plan on transferring, then know you’ll need to go at it in a similar way you approached your initial college application. Start by going to CampusReel.org to see what you’ll need to make the transfer to, for example, Penn State. Use that information to help you begin the process. Don’t stop there, however, as it’s important to diversify your efforts with at least a few better choices.
Explore the Extra-Curricular Activities Available
You’ll want to be an active member of at least one society. You’ll also want to see if there are any competitions or special programs available to you as a student. Investing your time and energy into these options is a great way to meet new friends, develop practical skills, as well as develop projects that you can then showcase to future employers as part of your portfolio or resume.
Work, Volunteer, and Intern
You’ll want to work, volunteer, or intern on one project per semester, or per year. While working a part-time job is always useful, try to see if you can get taken on in a more professional setting. You can work as an assistant on a research project, for example, or as a note taker for students who are sick or disabled. These are more forward-thinking and can help your career more than working in a retail or service job. They’re also a great way to expand your own education, since you’ll learn more on the job. The same benefits can be had for volunteering or interning.
Start Your Own Projects
If you feel in any way constrained by the options around you, try starting your own. You can start your own society, can work on your own project, and can even start a business on the side while you’re in university. Do all this, and then get advice and guidance from your educators and careers service professionals to do better every step of the way.