Finally! The last semester of final year is done and it’s time to go into the world of work. You get your resume done and start job hunting in your respective field of study.
But then your spirit starts to sink as you realize a month passes with no responses. Two months, three months, a year and still no responses.
You might be wondering what you did wrong? Your resume is great – I mean you probably even got it revamped by a professional. You graduated with honours. So what’s the problem?
These are all feelings I’m all too familiar with. This is the sad and sometimes depressing reality of job hunting for university graduates today.
Job hunting can get really discouraging
Terri-Karelle, in a video posted on her instagram page, highlighted the struggles of job hunting for young people.
“Sometimes you do everything right, sometimes you get the grades, sometimes you have the qualifications but there is no job offer. You do the interviews but you still don’t land the job.”
The entire process can get very discouraging. Sending out multiple resumes, dressing up for interviews only to be declined is exhausting, to say the least. It can also take a toll on your mental health. Thoughts of sadness and failure rushing through your mind are enough to drive you insane.
Sometimes when you look and see that all your friends are getting jobs and you’re the only one in the lot still struggling to find work, it hurts. You end up feeling discouraged, thinking maybe you’re the problem.
Your lack of work experience and age can be barriers to landing jobs
It is no secret that the requirement for years of experience is a major hindrance to graduates fresh out of university. Many companies require that their prospective employees have three or more years of experience in order to qualify for any job.
The reality is that many graduates leave school without having any work experience. Because they were juggling school and extracurricular activities, most graduates simply didn’t have the time to gain relevant work experience. Some may have done internships but most times this isn’t enough for some employers.
On the other hand some companies flat out reject applicants because of their age. The applicant may meet all the qualifications necessary to land that job but because they’re “too young” they are rejected.
According to them your youth renders you unable to effectively carry out the required task of the job. Forget about the fact that most times these are entry level jobs which are best done by the very young people that are getting rejected. And what’s funny is that these employers are usually strong “advocates” for youth development.
So, what do you do? You don’t give up
In the same video Terri-Karelle later asked “What do you now do? How have you developed yourself?”
The reality is that while job hunting is discouraging and depressing you shouldn’t give up. It’s in this seemingly dark and low point in your life that the perfect moments to work on yourself appear.
Take the time to learn a new skill, language, or enhance talents you already have. There are quite a few platforms that provide all the resources you need to develop yourself – like Linkedin, Skillshare, Udemy, Google and good old Youtube.
You can’t throw your hands in the air and vow to never apply for another job. Not now. Not when you’re so close. Continue to press for jobs, even the ones it looks like you aren’t qualified for. Just keep pushing.