Step 3: Apply
Apply to 3 Jobs
You have spent the last couple of years building your network, getting to know experts in the field, and becoming familiar with people and companies who can help you achieve your dreams. Now it’s time to put all that preparation in to action.
Senior year is about unearthing the best opportunities for you by making active use of your network:
Review your materials. Now is the time to revise your resume and to begin drafting cover letters. Practice writing three of four drafts of a cover letter before sending to employers. Read more…
Get Letters of Recommendation. It is a good idea to ask professors and colleagues for letters of recommendation early if possible. Allow them at least 2-4 weeks to write a letter for you. Try to get at least 3 letters and from professors and non-academic sources. Read more…
Make the Ask. Speak about your interests with former and current colleagues, professionals you have gotten to know, or family and friends. Be specific; become familiar with real jobs or open positions that you’d like to apply to. Then ask your network for a referral for that specific job, as candidates who come with referrals (especially employee referrals) are much more successful at securing employment with their target companies.
Be Grateful. When someone gives you a referral, they stake their professional reputation on your worth. They have much more to risk than you do. Thank them promptly for any help they provide, and live up to their good opinion by conducting yourself honorably and professionally throughout the application process.
A Note on Graduate School
If you are considering graduate school, you will need to start the process of applying early. In fact, it is best to start considering options and reviewing an application timeline in your junior year. Talk to professors and the Career Office staff about possible programs, schools, and careers.
Read more: Job Search Guide
Use this: Job Search Worksheet
Read more: Applying to Graduate School Guide
Use this: Grad School Application Worksheet
Mock interviewing should begin in the Junior year, however it is important to practice throughout the Senior year as well. Practice for an interview by running through a simulation with our staff. Each mock interview is conducted over a period of 30 minutes, where we will practice your answers to basic and specific interview questions. We will work on your body language and non-verbal cues. And we can train you to handle any format (panel interviews, group interviews, phone interviews, video interviews) or type of questions (behavioral, brainteasers, situational).
The more you practice, the better prepared you will be for your interview and the more comfortable you will be in an interview setting. Arranging for a mock interview is as simple as sending your resume and the job for which you’re preparing to our staff. Setup your appointment today!
Read more: Interviewing Guide
Use this: Mock Interview Worksheet
Choose Offer and Write a 3-Year Plan
Congratulations! If you have gotten this far then you have just been offered a job. Congratulations on this milestone, and well done to put in all the time and effort necessary to get this far.
There are a few steps to consider when evaluating a job offer.
Review the paperwork. Make sure you have been sent a formal offer letter before accepting any offer. Make sure than any offer includes position title, start date, salary, benefits, relocation expenses (if applicable), and a date to accept the offer. If one or more of these details are not included, circle back with the company to clarify.
Be Grateful. It is a common theme—express your thanks for having been offered the position and feel free to express your enthusiasm as well. Use the first communication to ask any questions you may have.
Evaluate the Offer. Analyze all aspects of the job. Consider whether the job fits with your short-term and long-term goals. Decide whether the job provides meaningful employment and allows you to gain skills beneficial for your future. Consider whether the salary is sufficient, and analyze cost-of-living in the area and assemble a basic budget to determine if you will have enough money (after taxes) to cover your needs. Negotiating the terms of a job offer may be necessary before you can accept.
Accept or Decline. When you accept a position, you must stop interviewing for other positions. You may not accept a job unless you are committed to honoring that acceptance, and you may not accept a job to “fall back” on it if nothing else pans out. However, you may ask for more time to evaluate a job offer. If you need to decline a job offer, do it politely and leave the channels of communication open. Especially if you decline a job because you are unhappy with the terms, leaving the door open to re-negotiation may resolve your problem.
Read more: Negotiating and Evaluating Offers
Use this: 3-Year Goal Planning Worksheet