Even with social distancing and other public health measures during the spread of the novel coronavirus, COVID-19, students at The University of Alabama can continue to prepare and develop their career goals.
- Online presence is critical
- LinkedIn, Facebook and Twitter are the top social media platforms for networking. Make sure messages are consistent across platforms, including résumé and recognizable photos. Now more than ever, it’s important to make sure these align seamlessly. Make sure content is aligned with personal brand.
- Information interviews help to explore majors
- An informational interview is a conversation with a contact to learn more about a career, an industry or a specific organization. A firsthand account can help determine if a career might be a good fit. Candid Career has done some of the work already with hundreds of informational interviews less than five minutes long on its website.
- Prepare for interviews
- Study! There is information available before an interview to help relieve stress about uncertainty of interview questions. Look for clues in the job posting. Search for common interview questions for your career and answer them OUT LOUD! Practice with the Career Center, a friend or a mentor. Even a pet will listen for a few minutes. Visit the Career Center’s website or practice in a virtual environment using InterviewStream.
- Prep more for virtual interviews
- Test technology needed with family or friends as soon as a virtual interview is confirmed. Ensure backgrounds reflect personal brand. Stay aware of body language. Dress the part. Practice out loud. Focus on remembering the career accomplishments worth highlighting. Don’t forget to smile.
- Handshake, Handshake, Handshake
- Now more than ever, students can stay connected through Handshake, UA’s online recruiting system where employers will connect with students to do virtual events, career fairs and interviews. Students can make virtual appointments with career consultants. There are still jobs and internships listed there, and the Career Center will continue to push out hot jobs.
- Check voice mail and return phone calls
- Employers will leave a voicemail, so make sure the away message includes full name and sounds professional. Be timely in returning calls, either on the same day or within 24 hours.
- Stick out on social media
- Used wisely, online networking can yield great results. Profiles should be current. Stay active in discussions or groups to show engagement in the job search process. Develop a personal career statement to identify career goals and the steps taken, or planned to take, toward achieving those goals. This will serve as an accountability statement and provide action steps toward a future career.
The Career Center offers virtual services to students while the University is under limited business operations. For more information, visit the center’s website at https://career.sa.ua.edu.
The University of Alabama, the state’s oldest and largest public institution of higher education, is a student-centered research university that draws the best and brightest to an academic community committed to providing a premier undergraduate and graduate education. UA is dedicated to achieving excellence in scholarship, collaboration and intellectual engagement; providing public outreach and service to the state of Alabama and the nation; and nurturing a campus environment that fosters collegiality, respect and inclusivity.