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Once the college diploma is handed over and the graduation parties die down, the reality of the real world starts sets in.The truth is, college can’t prepare you fully for what’s to come in the years after when trying to jump start your career. Here are a few tips to help the process.


Don’t Be Discouraged

“We’re looking for someone with 5+ years of experience. This is probably one of the most frustrating requirements to see on an application. For any young professional it can be a deterrent to applying for a job. Don’t let the number of years keep you from applying to a job. If you are brought in for an interview, use it as practice. The interview will teach you what employers are looking for and how to perfect your responses to difficult questions. Don’t give up.


Market Your Strengths/Skills

This tip is especially useful when trying to transition from one career to another.  Study what your new career interest is looking for in a candidate and magnify it. Push those skills to the forefront; in an interview, cover letter or creatively. Finding a mentor in the field you are interested in is a great way to get your foot in the door. Feed off their knowledge to learn more about the job and use their expertise to help you start your career. Starting a blog or website discussing relevant topics and showing samples of your work is a great way to let yourself shine.


Check in with Yourself

When you finally land a job, it’s important to not forget you are still young and have a long way to go in the professional world. Take the time to stop and smell the roses; are you happy, are you doing what you love, can you see yourself in the same position in a year from now? It’s also a good idea to make a list of your “Do’s and Dont’s” that you want in a career. It’s important to be in a position and work environment that you enjoy. Don’t be afraid of change!