Jobs harder to find, but available

Many milestones await college students nearing graduation – getting the cap and gown, sending out invitations and planning the after-graduation party. But with the economic downturn, this excitement can turn into a time of apprehension, anxiety and fear of the future.

‘(My company) isn’t getting much work, so I am not getting much work.’ Now I am worried about how I am going to pay for school next semester. I paid off my school for this semester, but I don’t know about my job anymore. I am worried about my future and what is going to happen to me next May (when I graduate),’ Sanket Shah, a health and human performance junior, said.

Other students echo his concerns and are wondering how they will pay for the next term, make rent and find full-employment when even getting an after-school job poses a challenge.

‘The economy has hit college students hard. Anyone who isn’t currently working is going to be extremely hard pressed to find a job right now, and rising tuition rates have forced a lot of people to take a semester or two off to pay for the rising cost of living,’ history junior Clint Marchand said.’ ‘ ‘

While students can’t control what happens in Washington, D.C. or on the New York Stock Exchange, there are things they can do to reduce the stress of a down economy.

‘The first thing students can do is limit the amount of time they spend listening to bad economical news,’ said Janet Civitelli, associate director for Career Counseling at University Career Services.’

Overloaded with negative information will stop taking action, and this is the worst position to take.

‘Students should channel energy into actions that they can control, like staying clear on career goals, keeping in touch with employers that are hiring, get feedback on resumes and get more job-related experience through internships, part-time jobs and volunteer work,’ Civitelli said.

Many resources are available to students on campus. At UH Career Services, students can get help with resume writing, attend workshops and campus recruitment events, practice interviewing skills and receive one-on-one counseling.

‘During a down economy, people can still get jobs,’ Civitelli said. ‘It might take longer and it might take multiple steps to land the ideal job, but it can be done.’

Civitelli said down economies mean job seekers might have to compromise when looking for a job. A compromise is a strategic move made by the seeker to take a job that might lead to a better position in the future.

‘Job seekers shouldn’t settle. Jobs should be taken to make opportunities for you,’ Civitelli said.

Civitelli said students who are not graduating this May or December should get more experience and build their resumes through internships and part time work.

‘The best action you can take is to create a plan for when you are a freshman, sophomore, junior and senior,’ Civitelli said. ‘And don’t worry if you feel like you are behind. Now is the best time to start.’

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