Making the Most of the Winter Break

 The Union College trimester schedule provides you the time to dedicate to the career development process. What does this mean? You have the month of December to dedicate to gain experience (internship, volunteer, or job shadow), connect and/or start your search for summer internships or post-graduate employment.

This is applicable to all students; seniors, juniors, sophomores and freshmen. Everyone can benefit from being productive during their winter break.The Becker Career Center will help you strategize how to effectively utilize your time during Winter Break based on your own goals and objectives.


Gain Experience.

Proactive students dedicate their winter break to gaining experience in a chosen career field or position of interest. Employers prefer to hire students who have relevant experience. Oftentimes students find it difficult to commit to an internship during the academic year due to balancing academics. The solution is to gain experience over winter break.
Gaining experience over winter break will allow you to build your resume and become a competitive candidate for your internship search this upcoming summer as well as post-graduate employment.
 
How to gain experience over winter break:
  • job shadowing
  • securing an internship (paid or unpaid) 
  • volunteer at a non-profit or a local firm/company
  • part time/seasonal paid employment
You are strongly encouraged to make an appointment with a career advisor in the Becker Career Center to strategize how to conduct your search for winter break opportunities. We can discuss specifically targeting employers and professionals in your hometown/region, including identifying resources that would be the most effective for your search.
 
Connect.
Winter Break is a great time to set up meetings with professionals in your career field of interest. Connect with alumni, professionals in your hometown/community, or contacts you have identified through your own research.
If you have already made initial contact with professionals in your career field of interest,

continue to network with those  Union College alumni and employers.

How?
Informational Interviews. Schedule phone conversations with alumni and prepare a list of questions for the informational interview.
Meet them for coffee. If you are geographically close to your contacts, set up a time to meet in person for coffee.
Be sure that everyone in your circle (family, friends, community members, alumni contacts, etc.) are “in the know” regarding you. Communicate your interests, hopes for graduation, major, internship goals, etc. Even if your interests and major are changing, be sure that you are keeping everyone up to date. You would be surprised how many doors you may open by simply keeping your circle informed.
The connections you make now will undoubtedly help you moving forward throughout the remainder of the academic year as you prepare for graduation or a summer internship experience.

 

Start Your Search.

Summer internship opportunities and post-graduate employment positions are posted throughout the academic year. There is not always a rhyme or reason to the timing of recruitment for many employers. Winter break is an ideal time to catch up and learn about employers who are currently recruiting. You must be ready to search and apply so that opportunities do not pass you by! When the application deadline passes for a position, you can no longer apply.

Ask yourself the following questions to determine if you are ready to search and apply for positions of interest:
Do you have a resume? Has it been reviewed by the career center? If not, submit your resume for review today: careercenter@union.edu
Are you prepared to write a cover letter?
Do you know where/how to search for positions?
Are you familiar with the application process and what to expect?
Are you heading into winter break without a plan? If so, please connect with the Becker Career Center today, to prepare to make the most of your time.
Contact the Career Center at careercenter@union.edu.
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