Q. I am a recent college graduate, and I am terrified about finding a job on so many levels. For one thing, the companies I would have applied to for internships were not offering them during the pandemic. So I lack the experience I thought I would have. I am also worried that I will be exposed to unvaccinated people, especially during interviews and when dealing with clients. Finally, I worry that employers hold my grades against me because they dropped during the pandemic. Do you have any words of wisdom?
A. My first words of wisdom are these: you are not alone. In fact, 52% of recent graduates share your terror about entering the job market, according to a survey by Best Colleges. As a result, they changed their post-graduate plans and their employment goals, but the good news is that they are fully prepared to work remotely if that is part of the job.
Your fears about being exposed to unvaccinated people are probably justified. Another survey conducted earlier this summer found that 47% of US employees do not expect vaccines to stop the spread of COVID completely; yet, 66% are uncomfortable with employers tracking vaccination. If you are worried about whether the person next to you is vaccinated, you probably have no recourse other than getting vaccinated, wearing a mask, and trusting your coworkers and clients will tell the truth.
As for your question about grades, you can set your worries aside. Everyone went through the pandemic together; they know what a toll it took. For recent graduates, giving a grade point average is not necessary, especially if it is below 3.8. However, if the job indicates they want someone with a grade point average, at least what yours is, by all means, include it. If you received a high grade point average in your major (as opposed to your minor or cumulative average), then you can put that number on your resume. Otherwise, just omit the numbers altogether.
The types of courses you took are more important. So, too, is any work or volunteer experience you have, even if it is not on your chosen career path. Prospective employers want to know that you enter the job market with a work ethic, team spirit, and learning ability. As a recent graduate, your resume should highlight those hard and soft skills you learned on the job; soft skills, like communication skills, are in high demand and transition easily from job to job.
A great resume will give you confidence in your abilities, experience, and education as you enter the job market. Contact Robin’s Resumes® for the resume writing and career transition support you need at this critical time.