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6 Ways to Gain Work Experience as a Student

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Completing college will make a big difference to the job opportunities available to you. Unfortunately, though, most employers still prefer candidates with at least some experience. There are several ways you can gain work experience while you’re still a student to give yourself an edge over other graduates.

1. Use Your College Career Services

Beyond providing you with an education, your college can help you in ways. One service you should check out is career support. An advisor will be able to give you ideas for possible jobs to pursue that match your goals, prepare you for interviews, and check your resume.

2. Search for a Job on Campus

There are usually many opportunities to work on campus. Often, these positions are only open to students, which reduces the competition. Other advantages to working on campus are that it will be easy to get to your job and you’ll have an employer who understands that you need to fit your schedule around academic commitments (like classes and preparing for exams).

3. Volunteer at a Club

A great way to pair your passions with work experience is to join a club at college and volunteer for a leadership position. You may need to win an election to gain the post you want, which could mean you face some competition. If you’re unsuccessful in your first year, consider settling for a different volunteer position and running for the next election after you’ve learned more about the club. This will look extra impressive on your resume.

4. Apply for a Summer Internship

To gain experience for the career you want to pursue, find an internship for the summer. Check your college publications to see if they’re advertising anything you may be interested in and do your own research. Bear in mind that it’s sometimes necessary to apply several months in advance and that the application process can take several steps. Keep a note of upcoming deadlines to ensure you don’t miss out on a great opportunity.

5. Network with Your Contacts

Utilize all your connections to open up more possibilities than you’d find on your own. Talk to professors, alumni, and family members who have contacts in the field you want to enter. You’ll find that people want you to succeed and will be happy to help.

6. Consider Diverse Opportunities

Avoid limiting yourself too much when looking for a job or internship. Dismissing opportunities because you’re only interested in something specific could mean you end up with nothing. Remember that a wide variety of positions could give you valuable experience, including learning how to collaborate in a team, developing your organizational skills, and working with customers.

After a long day of classes and work, it’s important you have a comfortable home to return to, such as in student rentals. Barrie students can live in a spacious townhouse or suite at Foundry Georgian. As well as spending time alone in your private bedroom, you can relax in the clubhouse, work out at the fitness centre or outdoor basketball hoop, or escape to one of the study rooms to work on an assignment. Apply now to secure our lowest rates.

How to Make the Most of Online Classes

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Online classes have now become permanent for many students, for better or for worse. Unfortunately, it can be more difficult to stay focused when you’re staring at a screen than when you’re in the same room as your professor. The good news is that there are ways to stay engaged and take full advantage of your classes, even when they are online.

1. Decide Where You’ll Take Classes

Put yourself in the right frame of mind by designating a spot for all your classes. For most students, this will likely be a desk, but you may prefer the couch in the living room, the kitchen table, or somewhere else in your student housing. Just make sure you won’t face too many interruptions and will be able to remain there comfortably until your class is over.

2. Exercise During Your Breaks

Between classes, step away from the screen to give your eyes a rest and move your body to prevent strain. Depending on how much time you have, you may even be able to fit in a short workout, a stroll, or some quick stretches. It’s best of all if you can head outdoors for some fresh air and sun.

3. Sit Near a Window

If possible, take classes near a window. This will give you some sun all day long, increasing your vitamin D intake. Plus, glancing outside to the trees and blue skies is relaxing, which can keep you motivated during classes.

4. Keep Your Phone Out of Reach

When a class is moving a bit slowly, it can be tempting to reach for your phone to check if you have any messages or to start scrolling through social media. Soon, though, you’ll find that you’re not paying any attention to the class. To take full advantage of your college education, you need to at least try to stay focused. The best way to do this is to keep your phone out of reach during class time.

5. Let Others Know That You’re in Class

Another way you may become distracted is if the people you live with want to talk to you during class. This is particularly a risk if you like to take classes in a shared space, such as in the living room. However, roommates could also knock on your door if you’re in your bedroom. Let everyone around know when you’re in class and need to be left alone. You could even use a system like a sign hanging on your door.

6. Stay Hydrated and Eat Well

It’s difficult to stay focused if you’re dehydrated or hungry. Keep water nearby, and perhaps some healthy snacks as well. Plus, figure out when you’ll have meals — if you’re limited for time, you could prepare food in advance.

7. Split Your Screen or Handwrite Your Notes

To avoid missing parts of the presentation, split your screen to watch the class and type at the same time. Alternatively, you may prefer to handwrite your notes. Many students find that this helps them retain information better, and you can always type your notes up later when you’re organizing them after class. Of course, it may be difficult to write quickly enough, depending on how fast your professor talks.

To succeed with online classes, it’s crucial that you’re able to attend in a quiet environment. This means having either a private bedroom or access to a study space. At Foundry Georgian, you’ll have both. Our alternative to Georgian College residence provides you with your own room in a townhouse or suite as well as community amenities like a clubhouse and study rooms — and everywhere has fast internet. Apply for a lease now to start getting more out of your time at college.

When to Start Looking for Your Post-College Job

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It’s difficult to know when you should start looking for your post-college job. You’re unavailable to begin working immediately, but, ideally, you want something lined up for soon after you finish college. There’s no one-size-fits-all answer to this problem: it depends on a variety of factors, including your industry and the kind of job you want. You may be able to wait until spring of your senior year to start applying, or it could be necessary to start reaching out to companies much sooner. Here are some considerations to help you make the right decision.

Jobs with Training Programs

You’ll need to apply early if the job you want requires you to complete a competitive training program. Recruitment for these kinds of jobs often starts in September, but candidates don’t typically receive offers until at least November. This includes jobs in the financial sector, particularly in consulting and accounting.

Internships Leading to Employment

Some organizations recruit many of their new employees through internship programs. In particular, positions in banking and business management tend to start out with internships, with the top students being offered employment when they graduate. If this is likely to be the case for the kind of job you want, you should apply for internships that you can take over the summer of your junior year.

Opportunities Available Later in the Year

Some companies don’t start the recruitment process until the spring or later. This includes small businesses that lack training programs as well as companies in sectors like advertising, communication, publishing, and the arts. Furthermore, assistant positions often open as they become available, particularly for editorial, human resources, gallery, and broker’s assistants.

Finally, many other jobs only open in the spring after companies have finished internal promotions and determined their need for additional employees.

Unlisted Jobs

It’s also possible to apply for jobs that are unadvertised by reaching out to companies you’d like to work for. You should do this as early as possible, sending a resume and cover letter detailing your relevant experience and explaining what kind of position you’re interested in. Ask when interviews will begin for suitable jobs. If you receive a reply that interviews are several months away, it’s a good idea to send another email nearer the time to remind the company that you’re still interested.

Including Your College Education on Your Resume

In all the above situations, you’ll be using a qualification you haven’t yet earned to land the job. For this reason, it’s important to include your college education on your resume. All you need to do is include the name of the institution, the type of degree you’re earning, your major, and your expected graduation date. You can even include the words “expected graduation” after the date to make it extra clear that you’re still in college.

Make your senior year of college the best yet by moving into better student housing. Barrie has Foundry Georgian — modern student living with all the amenities you need to be successful in your final year, including spacious private bedrooms, high-speed internet, and quiet study rooms. Secure your spot before all the suites are taken.