A Diploma and a Plan: What to Do After Graduation

Career Blog

Published: June 26, 2018 by Evelyn Hudson

If you just graduated a few weeks ago and are wondering, “What am I supposed to do now?”—the iSchool offers excellent webinars that answer that very question.

For example, the “Graduated – Now What?” webinar explains the smart steps to take once you toss your tassel. Jill Klees, iSchool Career Liaison, hosted this helpful webinar.

Klees reminded students that she is available to “work with you on whatever you need that has a focus on your career and job search.”

She began with a discussion of excitement versus fear. Many people feel one way or the other when beginning their job search.

Klees recommended that students visit the Career Development pages provided by the iSchool.

“This is a great place for you to check out and for you to start,” Klees explained.

She identified four steps that go into a job search: develop a strategy, know what you want, know who you are and get started.

Develop a Strategy

She advised that students should have a plan A (ideal job), plan B (back-up plan) and plan C (back-up to your back-up plan).

“It helps to be strategic in your thinking and create a realistic plan,” she said.

Plan A is a job that fits your skills and interests, plan B is another job that would work for you and plan C could be a placement agency.

Know What You Want

If you aren’t sure what you want to do, check out the Life After the MLIS section of the iSchool website to see what real graduates are doing after earning their degree.

“I think it’s super helpful to get a sense of what other people have done to help you see where you might fit and it also gives you some people that you could reach out to and ask them some questions,” Klees pointed out.

In addition, students should consider potential compromises, such as location, a different job entirely or a lower salary.

Klees reminded students that their first job after graduation can be a stepping stone to something new. It is not always the “end-all job.”

Know Who You Are

It is important to know yourself and your strengths before your job search.

“You need to take stock of who you are and what it is you want to do and what it is you can do,” Klees stated.

Klees offered several helpful questions for knowing yourself better, such as:

  • How can I add value?
  • How can I articulate my strengths in the interview?
  • What do I want to highlight on my resume?

Get Started

To get started, Klees provided a list of places to begin, such as professional associations, professional contacts, LinkedIn, Handshake, job search websites, and more.

Klees recommended several LIS-specific job sites to search, such as INALJ.com, libgig.com and LibJobs.com.

For general job search sites, she advised students to search for job keywords instead of titles to get better results.

“You’re going to get more variety of positions,” she explained.

What did you find most helpful in the webinar? Share your highlights in the comments!


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