How to Make the Most Out of Your College Experience
You’ve no doubt heard people state that, “life is short,” and there is, of course, great truth in this statement. But what does this mean for you as a college student or a high school student that will soon be venturing to college? Clearly, you want to make the most out of your college experience. After all, no one is going to state, “I hope that I waste my time in college.” Yet, this is exactly what many people do. If you are not careful, you can definitely waste away your college years.
You’ve put a great deal of effort into the college process including steps such as taking SAT practice exams and SAT practice tests online and studying the different ways to handle financial aid for college tuition. Getting into college is, of course, one step and it’s a big one, but it is far from being the end of the road. Once you are in college, then what?
It would be easy to only focus on grades, grades and grades, and there is a degree of wisdom in doing so. However, it is vital that you do keep a bigger picture in mind as well. Most people are obsessed with grades for their ability to (at least in theory) translate into a “good paying job.”
Let’s just stay on the topic of the job for a moment. Landing a great job, especially in a competitive field, can often come down to more than your grades. Being able to show that you are a good candidate for a job is just as important. If you lack social skills and don’t know how to present yourself, then you better have a skill or degree that is very much in demand. A good deal of attention is given to good grades and their relationship to landing a great job while in college, but little attention is given to the importance of understanding how to interview for jobs.
The interview process isn’t just about knowing what to say or what not to say. Often when employers make hiring decisions, they choose someone that they will have to spend a good time with. As a result, if you don’t know how to present yourself and how to “interview well,” you could be in trouble.
Most certainly there are many jerks standing as gatekeepers between you and the job you want; however, you shouldn’t assume that if someone doesn’t give you the job that it is because they were deficient or a horrible person. It might be true, but there could be other variables as well, such as a more qualified candidate or the fact that you need to improve your interviewing skills.
Grades are extremely important, but developing the skills you need to interview well is also essential. You might not be a people person or have a magnetic personality, but that doesn’t mean that you can’t work around these factors in your interview process. Showing on your resume that you have accomplished something beyond going to school helps to distinguish you from the rest of the pack. It shows planning and initiative on your part, and many employers will be excited to see this!
So much of making the most out of your college experience is to look beyond grades and to your life after college as well. Building up your resume in ways that will set you apart from your competition should be seen as part of what college is all about. Fail to do this and you might just struggle to find the right job even if you have the “right degree.”