Congratulations. You have a college degree. But, what if youve lost your job or still cant find one? What if the job you have isnt quite for you? What if you love your job, but need some help moving up the corporate ladder? Great news: Career Services at New Mexico State University can help out.
All of the services we provide to students are also available to alumni, says Roseanne Bensley, associate director of NMSUs Career Services. Gone are the days when having a diploma guaranteed a job. You should be able to highlight the other skills, talents and experience you have as well. At Career Services, we can advise alumni on job searches, resumes, cover letters, salary negotiation, even use of social media for networking purposes.
With the countrys slow economic recovery, she says the job picture has been hard to read for the last few years. One month, there is a lot of hiring around the country; the next month, numerous layoffs are being announced. Similarly, some job sectors have done very well, despite the economic turbulence. Others havent.
Weve seen people who are out of work three, six or nine months. You need to treat those days as work days so you dont lose those skills, she says. Read trade journals, network with people in your field, keep your resume up-to-date. You need to look for ways to continuously improve your knowledge base. Dont stagnate.
She says geographic location is one important factor to consider when searching for a job, or finding a new one.
If you are set on a certain career field, you may have to be more flexible on the location of the job youre willing to take, Bensley says. If you are set on a location, you may have to be more flexible when considering the jobs that might be available.
Career Services also can help alumni looking to advance in their careers or those looking for a new career direction entirely. Alumni can simply call to schedule a free and personal appointment with a career adviser, or take part in a career-planning workshop.
We look for any opportunity to invite alumni to visit with us, says Anthony Marin, director of NMSUs Career Services. We are certainly open to feedback from alums as to what they would like to see. We can advise them in person, or via email, phone or the Web.
The Career Services website has an entire section devoted to alumni, including the AggieCAREER Manager, a subscription service where alumni can register, build an account, load their resume and browse the 400-500 active and current job postings from around the country. Plus, alumni can utilize AggieCAREER Manager at no cost.
Optimal Resume is another online service, offered for free by Career Services, which helps users design cover letters and resumes. It also provides users a module for mock interviews from the privacy of their own home.
A new program offered through the NMSU Alumni Association is a free, online webinar series offered to all NMSU graduates. A new webinar is offered each month at http://bit.ly/SmAS53.
For anyone looking to go back to school, NMSU offers numerous graduate degrees from dozens of academic departments representing every college on campus.
I think some of the individuals who have a leg up in this economy are those who participate in co-ops and internships, Marin says. It helps when youre able to work in a professional environment that complements your education.
Another way Career Services looks to help alumni, as well as current students, is by holding six different career fairs throughout the year. These include Career Connections, Employment Extravaganza and the Educators Job Fair in the spring. Career Expo, Graduate and Professional Job Fair and the Government and Public Service job fairs are held in the fall.
We have a lot of national employers who come to NMSU seeking to fill positions, says Bensley. Its not just jobs in Las Cruces, or in New Mexico.
NMSUs Career Services is located inside Garcia Annex and is open from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday-Friday. They can be reached at 575-646-2849, hireNMSU@nmsu.edu or online at careerservices.nmsu.edu. Alumni also can connect on LinkedIn, Facebook and Pinterest, along with a new mobile app coming out soon.
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Career Services helped me after graduation, as I was applying to teach through NMSU and as I continue to search for appropriate opportunities. They have been especially helpful with creating and updating my resume and curriculum vita and with considering a wide range of opportunities where I can apply my experience and education. Career Services has also served as a resource for every class that I have taught. I requested that they send a speaker at least once to each class to explain their services. The student response has been enthusiastic. Students are often surprised to hear that Career Services will help them in their career search after graduation, as well as while they are students. Many of my students have been successful in obtaining internships, other career-preparation positions and even their first jobs through the information they received from these presentations.