Being a college student is challenging for a variety of reasons. Balancing studying with the “new normal” of a completely remote environment, is an extra challenge no one expected to happen, especially to so many of us at once.
Amy Soricelli, Vice President, Berkeley College Career Services, offers the following tips for college students to make their lives less stressful while navigating their days to allow enough time for studying, research for the job search, the job search itself, family and the responsibilities associated with managing one, and their own mental and physical well-being.
Planning – That’s Where You Begin.
Ideally, the day should begin when the day usually began during your life before the coronavirus COVID-19 pandemic. Disrupting the pattern of one’s life adds additional stressors and confuses the flow of it.
Determine your most pressing “must do’s.” That probably means schoolwork ... tests … and papers. Get those done first. Work on keeping up-to-date with everything that drives you towards graduation.
At Berkeley College, student services and Academic Support Centers also are working remotely, as are the professors. All are in this same space together. There is no disruption in the resources provided to students, and this is crucial at a time of uncertainty and fear.
Once you have taken care of the coursework that is mandatory, you need to take a break. Whether it’s listening to music, looking through Instagram or Twitter – you need to find an activity that is different from your studies. Let your brain take a moment to move from one place in your life to another.
Then … It’s Job Search Time.
Decide to devote an hour or two of concentrated effort on research for new jobs. Do things differently. Decide that each day you will identify five new organizations of interest. You will research them on LinkedIn, Glassdoor and on their own company website. You will then visit their “job” link on their company page and determine if there is a job that is suitable for you. Then you hit apply. Best part of this process is, as a Berkeley College student (or alumnus,) you then can reach out to your Berkeley College Career Services Counselor who can assist you with the follow-up on your application … and who quite possibly can reach out to a real live recruiter on your behalf! After you have worked hard on creating a “‘target list,’” you have a foundation for all job search activities for the coming days. You have a goal and a plan in place.
Now you deserve a break. Step away from your phone and your computer. Watch a movie, call a friend, take a bubble bath, go for a safe social distancing walk for a few moments, make a sandwich, bake a cake.
Fine Tune the Remainder of Your Day.
Spend the rest of your day fine-tuning your earlier efforts. Check that your classes are finished for the day and that you turned in everything you needed to, and, that you satisfied with the results. Make sure you have taken care of any correspondence your professors are waiting for. If possible, spend a few moments looking at LinkedIn for fellow students and professors to see how you can build your academic network. There are almost 5,000 students, alumni, professors, staff and employers there ready to connect with you in the official Berkeley Group on LinkedIn, so make sure you have joined.
Also make sure your Career Services Counselor knows your activities because they may be able to help. Keep detailed notes about where you applied, including the company, position title, salary information, application date and posting number. Make sure your Counselor hears from you often. You need experts in the field right now, and that is certainly who they are.
Once you have accomplished your daily list of activities and fine-tuned the efforts of these activities, you can call it a day. You are not a machine; you are not 24/7. Adapting to the world of “remote learning as a job seeker” is not easy – but as part of the Berkeley College family now, there’s nothing you can’t do, and we are here to help you with all of it.
See you online!
About Amy Soricelli
Amy Soricelli, Vice President, Career Services, has more than 30 years of experience in the fields of recruiting and career services. She joined Berkeley College in 2009 as Director, Alumni Placement. Prior to joining Berkeley College, Ms. Soricelli was Account Manager at Taylor Grey, a staffing firm, where her primary focus was the placement of administrative support in New York City, Connecticut and Long Island. She also was the Director of Placement at the Katharine Gibbs School where she received the Top Placement Award for eight consecutive years. Ms. Soricelli is a graduate of the Herbert H. Lehman College. She holds an M.S. in Specialized Services in Education with a focus on Guidance and Counseling and a B.A. in English.
About Berkeley College
Berkeley College, founded in 1931, is a career-focused institution accredited by the Middle States Commission on Higher Education that offers students Master’s, Bachelor’s, and Associate’s degree and Certificate programs in more than 20 career fields. The College has campuses in Midtown Manhattan and White Plains, NY, as well as in Newark, Paramus, Woodbridge and Woodland Park, NJ, with more than 5,700 students enrolled. In addition, Berkeley College Online® serves a global population. U.S. News & World Report has named Berkeley College among the Best Colleges for Online Bachelor’s Programs and among the Best Online Bachelor’s Programs for Veterans, for seven consecutive years. The website address is www.BerkeleyCollege.edu.
The mission of Berkeley College is to empower students to achieve lifelong success in dynamic careers.