How To Prepare For Graduation
By Tishawna Williams
Tishawna is a part of the TLC College Ambassador Program and attends North Carolina A&T University.
There is no better celebration than graduating college, but it also brings confusion. Some students are ready to cross the stage and start their new journey. Other students are unsure where to go next. However it’s never too late to prepare for life outside of college.
Here are some things you can do that will benefit you before graduating:
1. Visit your school’s career services office. This office assists students in finding work opportunities, internships, and volunteer opportunities. The career service counselors can also critique your resume and cover letters to make sure you are in tip-top shape for an interview. They also can help you build a portfolio.
2. Prepare an up-to-date resume. Make sure you gather all of your projects and coursework related to your field of study. Compile the work and experience into a resume that can also be used in your digital portfolio.
3. Gather at least three references. These references can be the difference between getting your foot in the door or not. You will need their name, title, phone number, and email. Try asking professors and internship supervisors to be references. Those are the people who have seen you work within your major.
4. Invest in business professional attire. You must dress professionally for interviews. You want to make a good first impression, even if the job you are applying for doesn’t require business attire.
5. If you are planning on attending graduate school right after graduation, research your options. Some schools require the GMAT, while others require the GRE. It is best to find out ahead of time to avoid missing deadlines. Visit testing websites in advance of your graduate application deadline to figure out when you can take your exam.
6. Set up a payment plan to pay back student loans. Most loans begin repayment six months after graduation. Never ignore your student loan advisor. You could possibly miss payment deadlines and the consequence could be interest on what you already owe.
7. Create a realistic budget. This will help you decide where you can afford to live after graduation.
8. Find a mentor. Mentors can be a huge help in finding jobs. They also give great post-graduation advice.
9. Study for your exams. Make sure you pass your finals. In addition, be sure the balances on your student accounts are paid. You do not want to get to graduation and not be able to walk because of holds on your account.
10. CELEBRATE! You have waited four years or more for this moment. Be proud of all you have accomplished.