5 Things to Prepare for After Graduation - Undergrad Success
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5 Things to Prepare for After Graduation

5 Things to Prepare for After Graduation

I am here to tell you that your dream job is not waiting for you at the end of the tunnel. Not that I am trying to be morbid, but I thought I should be the one to break it to you. You work hard towards graduation with the hopes of starting your career with a bang. Well, in most cases it is not the fairy tale story you envision. But, with all that being said, there is nothing to be worried about as long as you are prepared.

You enter college with graduation day being the last thing on your mind. You are there to make friends, get involved, and have fun. But as you crawl (yes, crawl) closer to graduation your mindset changes. Reality begins to set in and your future career becomes your focal point. Your ideal situation might not be waiting with open arms, but being prepared to handle these five situations could result in future success.

The Not So Dream Job

Most of us begin deciding the path we want to travel, career wise, our senior year of high school. Preparing for college you are asked to make a life altering decision, what area will you focus your studies? With this major you must consider the path to graduation, what type of career it will produce and if there is longevity in that field. For most majors, the job market is competitive leading to newcomers being left in the dust. But that doesn’t mean there are not opportunities.

You must prepare for having a job that may not be your ideal situation. Whether it is an unpaid internship or a part-time position, as long as you are putting yourself out there and working hard good things will come your way. Getting your “foot in the door” is better than nothing. Make sure that you give yourself options as to not be left in career limbo.


Many graduates limit themselves by not exploring long distance options. You might want to move back home or have fallen in love with your college town, so your search is directed towards one area. The reality is, the job market might not be open in the desired areas. Moving for a job is something that needs to be considered by any graduating student. Though you are leaving a comfortable situation, it could be the best option for your career.

This is an area that not many graduating students are prepared for. Interviewing is already tough, but handling a relocation situation is a whole new ball game. It can be a great opportunity, but make sure that you are prepared to properly discuss and negotiate a job relocation scenario.

Going Back to School

So you have graduated. What is the next step? Please say anything but more school! Who could blame a graduate for thinking this way? Thoughts of testing, term papers, cramming for exams and more flood your mind when the subject arises. But consider this; going back to school can create more employment opportunities. Sure it is hard to think of going back now that you just got out. In the big picture, a more educated and prepared individual is more appealing to a company. If the opportunities are not necessarily there at an entry level once your graduate, more school could make you more valuable in your industry.

Moving In With Your Parents

We all have visions of success and being able to support ourselves after college. Though one day this may be possible, right after graduation might not be the time. Throughout college you have enjoyed independence and the world you have created. The thought of being back under your parent’s roof can turn your stomach. Trust me I’ve been there. But times have changed. College grads aren’t leaving college and going straight into a nice well-paying job. They are starting from the bottom. This leads to some difficulties in certain areas, especially living arrangements.

More and more graduates are living with their parents at the start of their career, labeling them the boomerang generation. Though no one wants to explain to their friends who their “roommates” are, it can be a beneficial situation. Saving money and getting somewhat established financially can help you prepare for any situation that may come your way in the near future.

Going Outside the Box

You have chosen your area of focus in college because you believe it is what you want to do and you will be good at it (or it will pay a lot of money). But do not neglect other strengths that you have. They could help you after you graduate. Finding a job in your desired industry might be next to impossible. This means you might need to start looking at other positions. Sales might not be your forte, but if you are very personable you might be able to land a job. This type of position does not have to be permanent, but it can be beneficial. Being able to explain to a potential employer that you were able to adapt to an uncomfortable situation and be successful, yeah that matters.

You worked hard to graduate, make sure to enjoy it. But years from now it will seem like a distant memory as you progress through your career. The road after graduation is never an easy one, but the more you prepare yourself and the harder you work will determine how successful you will be.

Author Bio: Caleb McElveen is a media relations specialist that enjoys writing about career development, finance and real estate.

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