Around this time each year I write a blog that talks with parents of college seniors who do not have a job lined up yet and do not seem to be engaged in finding one. This year I think that applies to about twice as many parents due to the challenges of this past year. The pandemic, even though it appears to be waning, has sapped these soon to be graduates of their belief in their future careers and in their own ability to influence their career direction. Before the pandemic I would hear from parents whose students would tell them that they just could not add one more thing to their schedule or that they are overwhelmed and anxious because everyone they know already has a job. This year they are more likely to tell their parents that it is hopeless and that nobody they know has a job.
Yesterday a mom called who tried to talk to her son and he said to her “mom what is the point – I am going to be working in a call center somewhere no matter what I do.” The hardest part of this conversation for that mom was that her son had worked hard through college, he had a strong GPA and at least an internship in his sophomore year. But still, he still feels utterly hopeless about his chances of finding a career worthy job after college.
At LaunchingU we empathize with students’ concerns, but also directly combat that construct. We work with our clients to help them understand that while it is true it is really tough out there – it is also true that there are jobs, and someone is going to get them. If they aren’t prepared to represent themselves strongly it isn’t going to happen for them – at least not in the short run.
We help our clients focus on the kinds of jobs they want and are qualified for, to broaden and engage their network to get meaningful support and teach them how to interview like a rock star. In helping them prepare they gain confidence. Yes, they are still fighting a very tough job market, but they are no longer battling their own lack of confidence and ability to sell themselves effectively. Our 12-session program works. Please feel free to go to our website and see details about our program for graduating seniors at https://launchingu.com/college-career-coaching/.
It is so much more helpful to have career conversations with pending graduates now v. connecting with them in August when they are bruised and battered from gaining no traction in a tough market without the skills and confidence to compete in it. We know how challenging it can be to engage your college senior in this subject and we would love to talk with you about how to help them.
One more thing. Please be generous with your support and guidance with the other graduating college seniors in your universe. Many of you have careers and have weathered storms as your careers evolved. Although we always counsel our clients to reach out to you, the professionals that they know, I am asking you all to not wait for them to do that. Reach out first. Listen to their dreams and worries, be generous with your thoughtful feedback and be willing to introduce them to other people you may know in the areas they are targeting. There is a pleasant surprise you will encounter if/when you do this. They will be easier to engage on this topic then your own children are – simply because you aren’t their parent.
We are here to help you and your child through this transition. We can be reached at Sue@LaunchingU.com or via phone at 1 (603) 398-7278.