Tips on finding jobs for recent college graduates

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COLORADO SPRINGS — After four years at the University of Colorado – Colorado Springs, Cameron June was ready to graduate in May of 2020.

“My major was Environmental Sciences and Geography, and a lot of that is outdoor hands-on fieldwork in class, and that got canceled,” June said.

Now it’s time for June and millions of other graduates to face the job market, a market that’s been complicated by COVID-19.

“The job pool just from small fish in a small pond to small fish in a huge ocean,” June said.

With the Pikes Peak Workforce Center, Al Maxwell trains job seekers and helps them nail a successful job search. The center says El Paso County’s unemployment rate for the month of April was at 12.2%, just two months before it was at 3.4%.

“College graduates are finding themselves in the same job market as those individuals who have held a job for numerous years,” Al Maxwell said.

Maxwell’s tips in preparing for a virtual interview:

  • Dress the part
  • Make sure the technology on your end is working properly
  • Sit in front of a “clean” background
  • Be ready to sell yourself.

“You’re not sitting in-person with that person, but you’re kind of in-person, so prepare the same way,” Maxwell said.

She also suggests graduates clean out their social media accounts and set up a LinkedIn page with a clever headline. Plus, most importantly take advantage of networking.

“Think of it in terms of a newspaper when you open it you see a headline and say OK I want to read more,” Maxwell said. “I would encourage them to start with professors and teachers and reach out to college grads with a LinkedIn page.”

June has had five to six virtual interviews so far, he’s covered this summer but is looking to land a permanent job come this fall.

“For me, it’s been a numbers game and getting applications out there and also just being patient,” June said.

For more on The Pikes Peak Workforce Center, you can visit them at 1675 Garden of the Gods Road, Colorado Springs, CO 80907, or call 719-667-3700.

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