A common thought upon graduating, is that students must jump at the first opportunity of a job they can successfully apply for. They can’t be picky, because finding a job is hard enough as it is without adding in preference or uncomfortability to the decision. “Take what you can get,” is the usual belief students have. Although there are so many opinions on what recent graduates should do in this time of life, it’s ultimately their own individual choice of which direction they should go. It is a daunting choice for sure, to have to choose your first career move, but you definitely do not have to start out at a place you’d rather not be.
Understandably, it’s confusing to decide where to start looking. Many students agree that it's terrifying trying to think of what they’ll be doing after graduation. Soon to be graduates get the question all the time, “What will you be doing after graduation?” Most of them have said they would like to slap the person who asked that in the face, and run away crying at the amount of uncertainty they feel in the moment, and the intense pressure that it puts on them to make an actual decision. Many feel too overwhelmed to even start looking, don’t know where to start, or even sometimes have too many great options, that they truly can’t decide which is best for them.
Take a deep breath right now, and realize it will all be okay. There are an insane amount of options and resources, just ask your advisors or school staff, for students to figure out what they want to start doing or trying after graduation. If you haven’t done an internship yet, then maybe start looking for one and completing it as soon as possible. Internships give great life experience of real world work in the field you want to go into, and even just great general life skills in the workplace. Most schools have an internship office with ways to get connected to, and apply for possible internships. If your campus doesn’t have that, or you just want more options, there are plenty of websites that list internships; like internships.com, bcorporation.net, thedenveregotist.com, etc. You can also get a lot of helpful information, and discover good websites to check out from general search engines online, like Google. Even your teachers are a great resource for connections to internship opportunities. Don’t be scared or intimidated to ask for help! There are many resources and opportunities, so just put yourself out there and try.
Another way to bring in an income after graduating is freelancing. You can get jobs if you already have some connections from previous projects you have worked on. You can also find jobs by networking with people who can hire you for design work, or know people who need design work. It can be hard to build a consistent stream of clients, but if it comes easily to you, and you stay busy, you can definitely have a steady stream of income to live off of. Be careful for scams though, because there are many websites and even people that claim to want you to produce work, but either rip you off, or waste your time. DON’T WORK FOR FREE! No matter what you choose, just do your research, do the best you can, and don’t compromise your values. You can do this!