By: Cecilia Yau
College is a stressful time. As a student, you are expected to do spectacularly in your classes because your parents have invested thousands of dollars in your education (no pressure). At the end of your 4 years, you’re expecting to walk away from your university with a fancy piece of paper, and hopefully, a career. As a current college senior, here are 5 tips to help you maximize your college experience and come out as a well-rounded and sought after prospect for your chosen career field.
1) Join a campus student organization
Student organizations (like DECA) are an amazing way to meet and build meaningful connections with other students on campus. The volunteering you do, guest speakers you meet, and competitions you participate in are also an amazing addition to your resume.
2) Get job experience (of any sort!)
Just because you want to be a future CEO, CFO, COO, or other C-suite job doesn’t mean you need to start off with one. As a college student, no one expects you to have a part time job or internship that matches your career field right off the bat. Your college years are probably the only time when it’s acceptable to jump from job to job every semester. Go out there and get some work experience! It will impress the person on the other side of the interview table, put a bit of cash in your pocket, and teach you a little about what kind of career you want to pursue.
3) Study abroad
Studying abroad is an incredible experience that will give you a different viewpoint of the world. Get out of your comfort zone and explore a new country. This will probably be the only time in your life when you can take 5 months off to study and explore another country while paying very little money and avoiding other adult responsibilities like a full-time job.
4) Learn to network
Soft skills are quickly becoming one of the most sought after traits for new college hires. Practice your networking skills at socials that the university or student organization hosts. These skills will benefit you greatly when you’re interviewing for a job, and later, when you enter the professional world.
5) Have a little fun!
In the end, don’t forget to have a little bit of fun. Go out on Friday and Saturday nights and spend Sunday recovering and studying instead. Work on cultivating a good work-life balance. Don’t be stumped when your interviewer tosses you an easy question like “what do you do for fun?” and say something boring like “studying.”