Seeking employment for nearly four months since becoming an Emory University alumnus, I was finally offered two jobs in sales and marketing last week. I spent the final two years of college primarily in writing courses to fulfill my English literature degree requirements; therefore, I initially only gave occupations pertinent to my major any consideration. Not quite prepared to renounce my student experience at Emory, I attempted to temporarily work at the university prior to moving on to graduate school. However, most higher education positions require two to five years of related experience, and, in eventual need of H-1B visa sponsorship, I anticipated low odds. Though I was mistreated and disrespected multiple times looking for various job openings, I also realized I had misconceived the hiring process of most employers of different backgrounds.
Work experience dominates college grades in the eyes of employers. Having returned from two years of military service, I dedicated my last couple of years at Emory College of Arts and Sciences to raising my GPA. Like the majority of college students would, I presumed my straight A’s would have proven my discipline, capability, and potential. Having applied for hundreds of jobs in the past few months, I learned hardly any companies care about or even ask for the applicant’s GPA but rather his or her experience that can contribute to the aspiring role. In short, having an internship or part-time job experience easily outweighs academic perfection.
“Don’t put all your eggs in one basket.” Whether or not interested in the firm, if granted an interview, do not think twice but rather immediately and enthusiastically participate. Sounding unsure on the phone leads the hiring manager to believe the candidate is uninterested and indirectly cancel the interview, which occurred to me twice. If offered the position, the applicant is allowed typically a week or two to make the final decision, and he or she can chase after other jobs within this given time frame. Had I abided by this theory without reluctance to accept any work, my job hunt could have been abridged and less stressful.
First job may not be ideal. Entering the real world can be comparable to joining college for the first time. Nobody can start from the top, and just as a freshman needs time to become accustomed to the college environment and academics, reaching gratifying employment will in most cases take more than one try. Hence, a recent college graduate cannot be obstinate for an instant dream job but rather open to even an entry-level occupation that barely pays.
Stubborn and oblivious to the aforementioned observations, I made this job-searching process unnecessarily challenging. Any position, regardless of its relevance to one’s degree, can open doors for greater opportunities. Unless a student enters the field of medicine or law with clear objectives, any occupation will offer him or her a valuable experience that will be useful to the future career path.