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The Student News Site of Stony Brook University

The Statesman

The Student News Site of Stony Brook University

The Statesman


    Now That You’re Graduating?

    First of all, I would like to congratulate all the graduating seniors on their completion of four, five, or even perhaps even six years at Stony Brook University. Now that you have graduated, the pressing question that lies before you is – What’s next?

    Countless graduating seniors, yours truly included, have asked themselves this very question on numerous occasions, and with all the right in the world to do so. I mean, students spend an average of four years of their life – that’s approximately one thousand four hundred sixty days of backbreaking, eye straining, shoulder cramping, finger numbing school work. This of course is on top of the many hours spent slaving away for your very understanding and very patient employer who has graciously allowed you to take off from work at the measly cost of your soul, just so that you can finish your last-minute paper, which of course, should have been done days before. ARRGGHH!!! The sacrifices we make, all in the name of knowledge and hoping that by going through this torture, we, the prospective pre-professionals of America will have a smidge of a chance at landing a job in our much desired careers of choice.

    But have no fear, for there is hope beyond the horizon. Is it a bird? Is it a plane? No, it’s a light at the end of the tunnel. For some, this article may be pointless, and if that’s the case, you can stop reading now and flip the page, but for others, I highly recommend that you read on, with hopes of stimulating some sort of idea on how to better prepare for your future.

    Are you still here’hellip;good. First of all, think practical. I know that every student who graduates feels as if they have been put through the test time and time again, and that finding a job above an entry level position should be a cinch. Wrong! In fact, this misconception can cost you time, energy, and a whole lot of money (which I am sure most students do not have) on top of a whole slew of disappointments from rejection letters. Take your heads out of the clouds, and screw it back on your shoulders tightly and securely. Apply for those entry level positions; embrace your first taste of what a career feels like. And after you get the first year or so under your belt, with much needed experience in order to advance, then that is the time when you should consider shooting for the stars. Be patient, your time will come.

    The second idea you need to keep in mind is to prepare yourself for change. Even though you may have graduated with a degree in a specific category or field, you may be in for a surprise when you wind up with a position in a major public relations firm when you had previously graduated with a degree in theatre. If things do not go your way, don’t be discouraged. Either press on with your hopes and dreams, or give in to the possibility that fate may have a new path for you and your career.

    As far as preparing for your interview, there are a few basic rules and regulations which everyone, men and women, should know and utilize. Remember these few rules of thumb: have an outfit that will make a great impression, have a clear and concise r’eacute;sum’eacute; and cover letter, and just be yourself.

    Men – you should invest in a good quality navy blue or grey suit (pinstriped or solid). Believe it or not, it makes a difference. Ladies – an elegant business suit or professional outfit is required alike. First impressions are always the make it or break it point in your initial meeting. The rules state, that generally an employer will have his or her first judgment about their potential employee within the first twenty seconds they meet. So dress to impress.

    Your r’eacute;sum’eacute; and cover letter should be a direct reflection of you and your highlighted qualifications. Have distinct categories for all your information and use clear and legible font styles and sizes. The Career Center is located on the lower level of the Melville Library just next to the Zebra Path. Ask for Antony Lin, Career Center Communications Assistant, for help with reviewing and revising your r’eacute;sum’eacute; and cover letter. Believe me, he’s worth the time and effort.

    Being yourself is probably the most important of the rules of the trade. No one likes a bulls*@t artist, and any employer will see right through it. When they ask you whether or not you can create a business report, or edit an article, or describe photosynthesis in ten words or fewer, and you say yes, you better be sure that you are able to stand by your word or else you may as well just end it there.

    This article is not to scare anyone, or deter anyone from wanting to succeed in the big, bad, ugly world. Instead, this article should attempt to answer some pressing questions which may have been stewing in your minds. Just remember, that you all came this far, and for those non-seniors who are not graduating this year, your time is near. You have invested countless hours of studying, writing essays, reading pointless articles and literary pieces, and miles upon miles of transportation to and from classes, all in preparation to make it through level two. Now go out there and show them what you’ve learned.

    May the force be with you!

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