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College & Career Training in Alaska

Congratulations!  You completed your program of study! 

To those who walked across the stage to receive an employment offer in their new career field:  We salute you!  That is awesome!  “Zero days unemployed” is something to strive for. 

To those who walked across the stage wondering, “What’s Next?”: Let’s work on getting into that new career field. 

Stay Positive and Focused: Jobs are out there.  Not just ‘jobs’, but ‘good jobs’ are out there.  It can take a lot of time and energy to find a satisfying job. Planning, staying organized and motivated, and making informed decisions are time and energy savers. Above all, you need to be positive and focused. It may take some hard work to find the job you want — and get it.

Employers are looking for the best applicants to fill positions in their organizations. It's up to you to sell your abilities and who you are. Your goal is to convince them that you are the best person for the position. Keeping your social media profiles cleaned up and professional goes a long way in today’s job search.

Login to AKCIS.org: This online personal learning and career planning system helps narrow down the field. Create your plan, focus your research, and compare occupations with the Alaska Career Information System (AKCIS.org).  By answering these questions – “Who am I?”, “Where am I Going?”, and “How do I Get There?” – explore the occupations you have been preparing for with your program of study.   Take a couple of online interest and skills assessments (e.g. Interest Profiler and SKILLS) to name job titles are you looking for specifically. Knowing what job titles to search for is a giant step forward.  Review the Job Search and Job Success sections of AKCIS for tips on applying to and keeping your next job.  Show employers how you fill the gap left in their workspace by providing the best possible picture of you with a great resume.  Organize your experiences, skills, and education using the AKCIS Resume Creator.

Visit the Career Services Department: This team is on your side.  The resources in this department are varied.  Some to watch for include – career counseling, interview and resume preparation, and resume referrals to employers.  Watch for recruitment events on campus, notices for events around your community or in your career field,

Network and Find a Mentor:  It is who you know!  Those people who have been in your classes – students and instructors – they are valuable.  Stay connected with them. Join the alumni association at your school, create a LinkedIn profile, and join the professional organization representing your career field.  You do not have to wait until you graduate to join a professional organization – many have discounted student membership fees. 

Seeking out externships, internships, and volunteering your time while you work on your job search is a great way to stay connected, build that “experience” those job postings are asking for, and keep your technical skills up-to-date.

Follow the buzz around jobs and industries.  Keep reading, listening, and studying.  You finished your program of study, but that does not mean you know everything there is to know about your new field.  Stay informed and in the loop. 

Utilize Job Banks and Attend Career Fairs: Two helpful job banks in Alaska are Workplace Alaska and Alexsys.  The Alaska Department of Labor and Workforce Development advertises career fairs and workshops.  Plan to attend, talk with hiring managers and recruiters, and find out more about their company or organization. 

Finding that career-starting first job will take some work, you will need to focus your efforts, keep your energy level up.  Use the tools provided by the Alaska Commission on Postsecondary Education (ACPE) and your school’s career services department.  Get out there and meet people while helping your community.  The earlier you start your search, the closer you get to “Zero days unemployed”!

About the Author

Julia Renfro

Julia Renfro

AKCIS Partnership Coordinator

 

A military BRAT turned military spouse, Julia likes traveling and meeting new people. Using Personal Learning & Career Plans (PLCPs), she works with students and families to plan futures that will help them enjoy life and their communities.

 

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