By Fiona Liu
The pandemic has drastically impacted the lives of many individuals across the world. Numerous people have found themselves living off unemployment checks since the pandemic’s onset, regardless of their industry. Likewise, it has officially been seven months since students were sent home for the rest of their semester and offered the opportunity to continue studying remotely. The idea of remote learning has become the “new normal,” as campuses across the United States have decided to adopt new technology and ways to educate their students amidst the pandemic. Most importantly, however, the class of 2020 will be always be remembered as the most resilient class given they were thrown into a declining job market. Thus, current undergraduates should learn from the class of 2020 and take advantage of the time they still have to prepare for the competitive job market during this recession.
Most, if not all, students enter college hoping to graduate with a marketable degree that will eventually help them start a successful full-time career. However, those individuals that did not enter the workforce this year still have enough time to prepare. While in-person networking events, such as alumni association meetings, career fairs, and professional conferences have been delayed or moved to a virtual setting, students should take this chance to build their online network. One of the most popular online sites is LinkedIn, a reputable networking site that connects millions of users every day. This platform gives students the ability to reach out to professionals and learn more about various different careers. Even further, LinkedIn offers multiple certificates, including data analytics, coding, excel, and many other technical skills that will help an individual differentiate themselves from their competition. Finally, aside from building technical skills via classroom or virtual training outlets, students should use their undergraduate years to engage in different areas that interest them via personalized projects, volunteering, and interning. Through doing so, an individual gains invaluable hands-on experience that will help them stand out among thousands of other applicants throughout the job seeking process.
Although students may feel like their careers have paused because of the COVID-19 pandemic, the job market is truly changing every second. For example, new technology and skills are being developed and required across various industries, which will create more roles for job seekers. Thus, as long students stay hungry and continue improving their technical skills, they should stand a good chance to land their desired position. Any professional will say they questioned themselves in college, but they still came out on the other side after much perseverance. You are ultimately responsible for where you end up, so make sure to take this challenge and turn it into a success story!
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