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When Your Students Are Ready to Graduate, Then What?

June 14, 2012

Darlene Zambruski, Managing Editor,

Getting a degree is what every student looks forward to. However, their career journey has just begun. Securing a job in today’s economy isn’t going to be easy. We all know as much. That said, it’s not impossible and they can make it happen far faster if they have the proper tool—an impactful resume.

Fifteen years ago, resumes were fairly standard. An applicant listed education and work history, then sent the document to as many postings as possible. Doing the same in 2012 won’t garner a lot of requests for students to interview.

The modern resume is a marketing tool that paints an individual as the perfect candidate for the position. It begins with a strong opening summary rather than an objective statement. Why? Because an objective is telling the hiring manager or recruiter what students want, not what they can do for the company. Additionally, an opening summary should paint students in the best light possible, showcasing what they know and have done in terms of the job requirements.

For those ready to graduate, that may seem daunting. After all, they have limited professional experience. Therefore, they need to focus on their education. If they’ve graduated with a GPA of 3.5 or higher, that information should be on their resume as it proves they have excelled. Past performance is generally indicative of future performance. Were they selected for any internships? If so, how many candidates did they beat out for the slot? What special projects were they involved in during school? Were they elected to any posts in student government? That’s important, it shows leadership qualities. What subjects did they study for their major? These details should be listed in the education section of their resume so that a hiring manager or recruiter knows they have the core skills needed for the opening.

In addition to beefing up their education section, which is their strongest selling point, they should list it right after the opening summary in their resume. This gives it additional weight and tends to minimize the fact that they may have little to no professional experience.

For their cover letter, a T-style format is the best. That is, they should have a column to the left titled “Job Requirements” and a column to the right titled “Core Skills”, then match what they know and can do to what the position requires.

No one has a perfect background whether the individual is new to the job front or has been in a career for decades. What a winning professional does know is that data organization and what they showcase is the best way to get that all important interview., a Nelnet business, has been online since 1998, serving students, entry-level, professional and executive job seekers. Its satisfaction rating is 98%; many of its editors hold postgraduate degrees and specialize in 40+ industries. For more information: Resume samples. Reviews of service.

9 Comments leave one →
  1. Ruth E Moreau former name when loan was made Ruth E Fowler permalink
    July 11, 2012 7:45 pm

    I would like to leave a comment for the precident of nelnet I am sick of your company harrasssing me and I will not put up with it any longer my doctor has filled out total and permanant disability forms more than once and I have not been able to work since the year of 1993 and I took out these loans I was on SSDI and it was taken from me because I tried to work and go back to school and I was not able to do so and got my SSDI back several years later and I have not been able to work at all since 1993 and I have been harrassed by your employees for many years and it is wrong I will get a lawyer and I will win this fight because I am telling the truth that you and your Company are wrong for what you have tried to do to me in regards to this loan and I need to be forgiven for these loans because of my disabilities and the pain that your Company has caused me.

    • Ruth E Moreau former name when loan was made Ruth E Fowler permalink
      July 11, 2012 8:00 pm

      Please stop this harrassment ASAP!

  2. Ruth E Moreau former name when loan was made Ruth E Fowler permalink
    July 11, 2012 7:51 pm

    I also wanted to say that I can’t believe what happened to me in regards to trying to go back to school and get an education and how I was treated by the College and the financial institute which is your Company Nelnet. It is not right what I have been put through over the years and I will not give up until I am able to sue your Company for harrasssment.

    • Ruth E Moreau former name when loan was made Ruth E Fowler permalink
      July 11, 2012 8:01 pm

      I am a good person I am just disabled make them stop ASAP1

  3. Ruth E Moreau former name when loan was made Ruth E Fowler permalink
    July 11, 2012 7:56 pm

    I was told that I am not smart and that I am a thief and more things that I don’t care to mention and all of it is against the law. I am a smart person and I had a 3.25 grade point average while attending College and I was denied my human rights by the Constitution and the Bill of Rights and I intend to prove it.

    • Ruth E Moreau former name when loan was made Ruth E Fowler permalink
      July 11, 2012 7:58 pm

      I would like you to stop your people from what they are doing ASAP!

    • Ruth E Moreau former name when loan was made Ruth E Fowler permalink
      July 11, 2012 7:59 pm

      Make them stop calling my phone ASAP!

  4. Ruth E Moreau former name when loan was made Ruth E Fowler permalink
    July 11, 2012 8:04 pm

    I thought that going to College would be the best experience of my life not the worst nightmare and I will sue your Company if it takes me the rest of my life I feel that your Company owes me the money and much more do you understand that?

    • July 11, 2012 9:42 pm


      I have read all of your comments. I know that we have certain requirements to collect on loans, but it sounds like you have been trying to always to do the right thing. I know you don’t want to hear from us…but do you mind if I really look into this and see what I can do to help. That means someone will call you again….but I want to get this resolved for you. If we can help …within the guidelines we are allowed to do so…we will certainly do so.

      Thanks for expressing your concerns,

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