Job Hunting Guide: Transitioning From College to Career

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Even in social situations, you are expected to act somewhat professional; if you choose to drink at these functions, do so in moderation.

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Use good judgment whenever your work life and social life overlap. A mentor can help you perform better at your job, explain the intricacies and tricks to succeeding in your field, provide a role model, and open professional doors for you.

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Not everyone is willing or able to be a mentor; choose someone you admire, have access to, and feel you can learn from. Here are some things to consider:.

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  • From now on, you make your own choices, from the way you act at work to how you spend your money. A little foresight and planning will help you achieve your lifelong dreams and goals.

    1. Expect your social schedule to change.

    Home Back to top. Making the Transition to Work Making the transition from college to work can be difficult. Here are some things to consider: Start good habits right away, like contributing to your K or other savings plan.

    Since this money is taken out of your paycheck before taxes, it costs less to save more. Save as much as you can before you have a wedding, mortgage, or family to pay for. Resist the urge to splurge on everything at once. Work out a reasonable budget for large purchases such as a new car, a house, a new wardrobe, a fabulous vacation; whatever you always wanted to buy during the ramen noodle years.

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    Making the Transition to Work

    Keep track of expenses like going out to lunch. You may be surprised how much these items can add up to. Remove pictures from college parties from your public profiles, including Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.

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    • Make your profile picture s a standard headshot — a professionally done one is preferred but not required. For most new professionals who are used to living on a college student budget, seeing that huge dollar amount on their first salaried paycheck seems like an invitation to do all the things they couldn't afford in school: rent a nice apartment, take expensive trips, purchase designer clothes, etc.

      Loch noted that it's important to create a budget to figure out how much disposable income you'll really have each month after all the bills are paid. If you're paying off student loan debt, be careful when taking on new debt to finance a large purchase. If you want to move to a specific place, Mitzen recommended subscribing to that city's business publication and reading the business section of the local newspaper. You'll not only learn about the business climate, but which companies are growing, expanding and making a difference in the surrounding community.

      You won't last long in a job or company that conflicts with your morals and values, or a job that doesn't motivate you. Make sure you consider your own personality traits before accepting a new job, Loch said. From there, continuously evaluate how your job, company, and career fit with your beliefs and motivators.

      5 Ways to Ease the Transition from College to a Career

      Learn how companies use recruiters as a hiring model, Mitzen said. You'll realize how important it is to reach out to recruiters before you graduate rather than after. Then send out letters of introduction, either by email or on LinkedIn, to recruiters about your professional background expressing interest in connecting. Likewise, said Mitzen, if you're looking to move to a specific location, you can reach out to recruiters in that prospective area. You never know; they may have a job opening where you're the perfect fit.

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      Spending your entire career with one company is now the exception rather than the rule, so don't fall in love with your first job or company. You may suddenly find yourself wanting to move on, or your company may hit hard times and face layoffs. Loch advised new grads to always be thinking about their next move, even if they enjoy their current position.

      Additional reporting by Nicole Fallon.