Congratulations on almost finishing college as an international student! Whether you intend to return to your home country or stay in Canada to pursue a career, finding a job after graduation takes a lot more than flipping your hand. Let’s find out what you can prepare right now to land a job after college.
Start planning at the beginning of your program such as the type of job that you’re pursuing. Don’t wait until you graduate to begin the job search. Employers are looking for more than just good grades in an applicant, so research on the key skills you should possess to land that dream job of yours. Employers are looking for experience and transferable or human skills, even as a graduate with no formal work experience. These are things that you can do to demonstrate non-academic skills such as leadership by hosting or organizing an event or conference, and teaching/tutoring other students.
Another thing to plan is to attend career fairs and talk to recruiters, build relationships and follow up with them for potential interviews.
Conduct your research – start making a list of companies that interest you and find out if they are open to hiring international students and learn about the qualifications of the role you’re eyeing on.
Network, network, network
We can’t advise you to network enough as it is proven to be the best way to find your future employer. Around 70% of jobs are filled through solid connections only without being advertised. Build relationships with your professors or even with any friends of your friends at school who have the potential to point you in the right direction. Professional channel such as LinkedIn is a great way to “promote” yourself among your connections so make sure you utilize it effectively and properly.
Work on an outstanding resume
Having a well-thought elevator speech and an up-to-date resume always comes in handy when you meet with a potential employer. Be positive and try to stand out by focusing on your unique strengths. Spend and extra time researching the company and role so that you can tailor your application accordingly to each one.
While crafting a compelling resume, listing your skills is a way to quickly communicate your ability to succeed in the role. Include a combination of hard skills (i.e., skills you learned through education and experience like software programs or foreign languages) and human skills (i.e., personality traits and skills you can apply to any job like problem-solving and time management).
Some pointers that may help you identify the skills you possess:
– What accomplishments and successes have you achieved? What traits, skills, or abilities helped you do it?
– What skills do your friends and family think that you have?
Stay positive and be persistent
Spending a lot of time trying to find a job without a result can be extremely frustrating and depressing in the end. Find a way to keep you motivated, spend more time with your support system. Staying positive about your abilities will show confidence and will inspire employers to invest in you.