When the going gets tough…

You just gotta keep on going.

That’s what I continue to tell myself through this job search struggle.

I’m one of the few in this world that genuinely wants a career. I went to college – not for the parties or to get away from my parents – to prepare myself for the working world. To show that I have a college degree and that I am ready and willing to take on whatever is put in front of me.

I have an excellent GPA, I’ve done a once-in-a-lifetime internship, I’m number three out of 110 graduating seniors in the Communication Department, and I’ve been Editor-in-Chief of my campus newspaper for three years. Why, I must ask, does nobody ever respond to my job applications? Or call me back? Or email me back? Or… anything?

I’m sure those of you reading this who are recent grads, or current seniors in college, feel my pain. So I’m here today with a list of places I’ve applied – not so they might come across it and hire me (though, that would be an added bonus), but to show my perseverance and open mind.

I apply to jobs I have no business applying to, whether it’s because I’m not qualified or I just don’t have much experience in the area. But I do it because who knows what might come out of it? They might have other positions open that I would be qualified for.

Here’s my list. And I’ll invite you to share your struggle with me in the comments!

(I have an Excel spreadsheet going so I’ll just go down that one by one..)

1. Writer position at Harvard University

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I applied on March 18, got a response email with a candidate reference number, and never heard back. A quick Google search will tell me that the position I am looking for is expired or has already been filled.

2. Editor at Rue La La

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I’ve actually applied to three different positions at this place. I like it because it’s very social media and online-based and that’s what I know a lot about! Editor is a stretch… seeing as I’m a college grad and all. But we’ll see! (I just checked on the status of the application – it’s in progress. But I submitted in March 18). … I just applied for a Social Media Writer position..

3. Editorial Assistant at Cengage Learning

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I guess that’s kind of small, huh? I checked on the status of my application – “Under review.” Which I suppose is better than “On File” which means it’s put away and I could be contacted in the future if a position opens up. Under Review means I remain under consideration for the position. See, looking up already!

4. Reporter at GateHouse Media

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This one kind of hurts a little bit because I am so qualified to be a reporter and this place never calls or anything (After three different applications..)! I get an automated response saying they received my resume and application, but then nothing! I know I still have a month until graduation, but all I want to do is be a reporter. Who knows, maybe they’ll call when May comes.

5. Reporter at The Daily Voice

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There’s a bunch of these in different cities that I could work for. They’re a little far from where I live, but I’m willing to travel which is a really good thing to be open to, I’ve learned. Chances are, I’m not going to find a job 20 minutes from my house so I’m applying to places more outside of my normal range. It might come in handy!

6. Junior Writer position at inScribe

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Unfortunately, this position is no longer on CraigsList so chances are it’s been filled, but that’s okay. Anything that says “writer” in the title, I’m usually all over that. Why not, right?

7. Editor/Designer at Design House

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I actually saw this on Facebook. Someone I’m friends with worked there and it looked like something I would be interested in. I know a little bit about page design, but am always willing to learn more so I went for it.

8. Community Manager/Content Developer at Arrow Electronics.

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I don’t know a whole lot about Electronic-type things, and I don’t have three years experience besides college and my internship, but I know a lot about social media and SEO (Hello WordPress blog!) so I applied. It’s probably a long-shot, but that’s okay!

9. Communications and Development Coordinator at Multiservice Eating Disorder Association

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These qualifications listed here, from the job posting, are why I applied. I don’t know much about event planning or eating disorders, but those things I can learn. If I fit these requirements, nothing else really matters to me. I will become more personally invested in a company if I get called for an interview.

10. Copywriter for Grand Circle Travel

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Again, I am not an experienced travel writer, but get me in the doors and I will get experienced. I did receive an email saying they got my application and if they were interested, they would contact me further. I guess since I wasn’t contacted again, they aren’t interested. It’s kind of depressing to keep saying it, but I pick up and move on. Why? Because there has to be something out there for me.

11. Social Media Coordinator at Planetshoes

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What’s cool about social media positions is that we as 21-year-olds already know how to do it. It doesn’t matter if you need to tweet or Facebook about shoes, food, clothes, or technology. Marketing a company over the web is simple if you know how to use the web! That’s why I love that these positions are available now, still so new, and definitely available to college graduates.

12. Media Relations Rep at National Grid

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It’s bad when I have to look up National Grid because I don’t really know what they are – even though I’ve heard the name a million times. But again, I will learn these things. I think I’m qualified to be a media relations representative because I know how to communicate with people. And that’s half the battle.

13. Planning Manager at Fox Boston

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I never thought I’d be applying to broadcast news places for the simple fact that I choke in front of a camera. But there are other opportunities to work at news stations – behind the scenes, PR, etc. I saw this and thought I could do it. I haven’t had five years of experience at a news desk, but being one of two people laying out a newspaper and deciding which stories are the most important counts for something.

14. Copywriter at Onward Search

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The copywriter positions are all similar – but it just depends on the company. In the automated email response to this one, I got a recruiters email address so I just followed up with her. As I learned today, you have to call and email until you’re basically a nuisance. There are so many people applying and you’ll get lost in the shuffle if you don’t make yourself known. And I want to be known.

15. Digital Designer at the Boston Globe.

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Now, I have a contact at the Boston Globe. Several actually. However, none of them turned into anything unfortunately for me. But I see these job postings and go for it. I’m not exactly qualified, I don’t think, to be a digital designer. But if they see my resume, maybe they’ll think I’m qualified for something else – like a reporter!

16. News Writer at Tech Target

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After reviewing this position again, I don’t think I would make a good fit. I don’t know much about security and don’t have five plus years in the business. But, hey — win some, lose some, right?

17. Epic Communications Lead at Lahey Clinic

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I don’t know if this counts, but my dad was back and forth to this hospital after he got into his car accident. (He’s fine now; I’m not using his pain for my benefit!) Maybe they’d give me a job based on all the business we gave to them. But no seriously — A communications lead is a big job for an entry level graduate, but maybe they need some PR help!

18. Media Relations Specialist at Wayfair

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All of these jobs are pretty similar sounding, but they all require different things. Unfortunately, this job is no longer posted. Looks like I’ll have to go on and see if they have anything else! Oh look, they do.

19. Public Relations Coordinator at CustomMade.

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This job is also not posted anymore, but it was kind of a stretch anyway mainly because I’ve never studied public relations. Shame on me – I never did PR or video classes. My advice to up and coming communication majors? Even if you’re interested in print journalism learn ALL the arenas — web design, graphics, online, print, video, everything. You’re going to need it all.

20. Social Media Lead at iProspect

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Something cool I discovered recently was LinkedIn jobs. They post so many and it’s awesome because they pertain to the resume you posted on the website. This is one of the jobs I found and it’s perfect for me. Proficient with google, twitter, youtube, and linkedin? I got this. C’mon iProspect!

21. The last on this list (but not my list) is Marketing Communications/Content Associate at Barton Associates

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What’s also cool about applying for jobs through LinkedIn is that it keeps you updated. It told me that my application for this position has been reviewed. Though they cannot “guarantee a response” from the company, I like that they keep you updated! This is mainly a medical facility, so I’d have some learning to do. But it’s corporate headquarters is in my hometown!

I know most, if not all of you, don’t really care about the places I’m applying to, but this post is suppose to serve more of a purpose than that. I hope that anyone who is struggling to get calls or emails back will look at this and realize it’s okay to apply everywhere and even a little bit outside of the field you studied.

I spoke with the Career Center today at my school and they told me to followup with all of the companies in which the job posting is still available. That’s excellent advice. If you realize you may still be interested in the job, call and ask for a hiring manager and see if they are currently interviewing for the position. Even if they’re not at the moment, your name will be in the back of their minds.

And just so you guys have somewhere to go when job searching – Indeed.com is an amazing website that I found most of those jobs on!

So, job-seekers, when you want to just cry or bash your head against the wall (like I’ve felt a few times) because you feel like you’ll never get a job in the real world, keep your head up. Apply to everything you see that you feel like you’d be happy in, including those that may be a little outside of your comfort zone. It’s frustrating, I know, but the end reward will be worth it!


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