Last week, in our first Senior Series 2022 installment we discussed Getting Started from Scratch with the job search – what to think about, resources available to Catamounts, and how to search for the job that suits you best. This week, we’ll discuss more tips on:
- Smart Job Search Strategies
- Decoding a Job Description
- Resumes & Cover Letters
- Crafting Your Online Profile
Smart Job Search Strategies
As you search for jobs, keep in mind that the process will probably take longer than you think. Devote a few hours each week to searching and applying to positions.
- Adjust your search terms to get different results. Ex: “medical laboratory scientist” and “medical laboratory science” will yield different results (you can also do this using Wildcard characters; and think broadly – not just “teacher” but also “educator” and “instructor.”
- Use filters and save searches so that you will be notified when your criteria are met.
- Stay organized in your job search using a spreadsheet – sample at the bottom of this checklist.
Decoding a Job Description
- Typically, the most important requirements are written first.
- Education level or certifications are typically not flexible.
- Years of experience might be flexible.
- Don’t get hung up on titles – a coordinator at one company might be a manager at another.
Second: Read between the lines – phrases like “self-starter” may mean you will be working alone a lot so be sure to highlight your ability to work independently; jobs seeking a “team player” may want to hear more about your experience collaborating across departments or the like.
Your resume and cover letter should be tailored to each position you apply to. The job description is your cheat code. Use it as a checklist to make sure you are addressing as many requirements as possible. Consult our Guide to Resumes webpage for tips and examples.
Crafting Your Online Profile Having a LinkedIn profile is highly recommended – think of it like an extension of your resume. (And include your personalized LinkedIn URL on your resume 😊) You do not have to be very active, but establishing an online presence allows you to present the professional “you” to potential employers.
- Make sure your photo is appropriate for your field.
- Write a headline that includes keywords an employer might search.
- Check out some ideas for writing your About Me section.
- Fill in your education and work experience.
- Get started using it!
Remember: Your @uvm.edu email
Your @uvm.edu email won’t last forever so be sure to:
- Add your personal email to Handshake to maintain access to all the opportunities there (Learn how).
- Create or update your UVMConnect account with a personal email to engage with a robust network of alums.
Your career journey requires a lot of independent work and initiative but know that you’re not alone. Collaborate with Career Center staff, employers, alums and fellow graduates in this week-long series of workshops.
Next Week: Considering Grad School, Service & “Other” Paths