Top 10 Tips for Taking Advantage of Winter Break
Winter break is a great opportunity to prepare for your job or internship search. Here are 10 things you can do to accelerate your search before returning in the spring:
1. Fine tune your interests and goals
Do a bit of soul searching this winter break. What are your skills and interests? What is important to you? Employers seek focused candidates who are able to communicate key components of themselves and show their potential value to the company or organization.
Check out Roadtrip Nation, an online resource dedicated to providing students with thousands of interview videos with celebrities, industry leaders, LMU alumni, and many other accomplished professionals.
2. Polish your resume and get it reviewed on VMock
Your resume is a marketing tool that paints a picture of your skills, abilities, and experiences, show employers and graduate schools you are a match for the position or program. Your resume is your first impression, so make sure it is a clear, concise summary of skills and relevant experiences. Get started by reviewing our resume guides.
Don’t forget to:
- Add activities, skills you gained, and other experiences from the fall semester
- Add relevant coursework
- Update your GPA
After updating, be sure to upload your resume to VMock, CPD's 24-7 online resume-review tool. You will receive instant and personalized feedback with line-by-line suggestions on how to improve your resume.
3. Take advantage of your location
Take advantage of being away from the virtual bluff to expand your network. Start by talking with family and friends and follow up with those you are referred to by scheduling informational interviews, virtual meetings, or remote job shadowing to continue refining your career goals and gaining advice on a particular job or career path. Even if they are not available to meet with you, they will appreciate the initiative.
4. Find and participate in career events on Handshake
During the Fall 2020 semester, CPD hosted over 30 virtual webinars with recruiters, professionals, and alumni from over 100 different companies and organizations. Explore details on all upcoming workshops, events, and fairs, and browse our Resource Library where you can view recordings of recent events from all industries.
5. Use LinkedIn to find contacts at your dream companies
Did you know there are nearly 55,000 Lions on LinkedIn? Did you know that 80% of jobs and internships are never posted publicly? Making connections is critical to your job and internship search, and LinkedIn is a great place to start.
6. Connect and network with alumni
Join and explore The Pride, LMU’s platform for connecting students with alumni for mentorship and career guidance. This platform is exclusive to the LMU community, and you can search for alumni based on industry, affinity, areas in which you need help, shared involvement in campus organizations, and more.
7. Research opportunities
Many job and internship programs start accepting applications early in the year. Use your time over break to think of what you might want to do with your summer and get a head start on applying.
Conduct career or industry-related research on the Occupational Outlook Handbook or O*NET, and browse our diversity-focused career resources to find organizations that align with your values. Once you’ve identified your target organizations, research their application processes, and connect with LMU alumni or others in your network who work there.
8. Use Handshake’s job board to find jobs and internships
Handshake has over 10,000 exclusive job and internship opportunities for Lions. Keep your profile up to date, including GPA, resume, and career interests, and set it to public so employers can find you! Students with complete profiles are five times more likely to be messaged by employers recruiting students on Handshake.
Donating your time to an organization or cause you care about is a great way to use your time over break and give back to your community. Volunteer experience can enhance your resume by demonstrating your well-roundedness and community investment to future employers. Explore virtual volunteering opportunities on Points of Light, a digital volunteering network.
10. Practice your elevator pitch
If you are graduating soon, you will likely hear the following question repeated by friends and family over the break: "So what are your plans for after graduation?" Use this opportunity to practice your Elevator Pitch - a short, well thought out response that articulates your goals, interests, and action plan for life after college. Practice tailoring your response to employers in different industries or locations. And remember, you do not know what you need to do for the rest of your life. Begin by thinking about what comes next.
Have a safe, productive, and happy break. We can’t wait to see you in the new year!