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Tuesday, July 23, 2019

Job Search Workshops Give Students, Alumni, an Edge

There’s good news for job seekers: Employment opportunities that have been suspended in a deep freeze these last few years are finally beginning to thaw.

“There is definitely a change taking place in the job market,” said David Wildfong, an Employment Services advisor at WCC. “My colleagues and I have seen an increase in the numbers and types of jobs that are available to job seekers over the course of the last year. Now, it may take a while for the average job seeker to ‘feel’ this increase in jobs, but there are changes taking place that we believe will continue through 2011.”

To help ensure that students and WCC alumni seeking work will find it, the Employment Services Center is presenting a series of free workshops now through April. The workshops are a great place to get a quick overview of successful practices and answers to your questions. The topics include:

  • Job search techniques
  • Resume development
  • Interview skills
  • Job fair preparation
  • Employment applications

See the full list of workshops for dates and times.

Go Beyond Online Job Boards

After you have sent out your resume and scanned every online job board you can find, what else can you do? Darlene Womack and Sandra Worrell, advisors in the Employment Services Center, have some suggestions.

“One thing that is overlooked and extremely valuable is joining professional organizations,” said Womack. “Most are targeted toward specific fields/industries. Becoming a member of an organization related to your field of interest could open the doors to job possibilities that you might otherwise never learn about. It’s all about networking and to do it effectively, you have to talk to people and let them know you’re looking.”

“Students and alumni should familiarize themselves with economic/business related organizations such as Ann Arbor SPARK and their local chambers of commerce,” said Worrell. “These types of organizations offer wonderful opportunities to network through meetings and seminars. In addition, Ann Arbor SPARK publishes information about jobs and employment in its weekly e-newsletter.”

Worrell adds that former students should use their alumni associations, including the WCC Alumni Association, to their fullest extent. “For example, WCC alumni go on to graduate from EMU, U-M, or MSU and return to our office for job search assistance,” she said. “We always encourage them to also get involved with their four-year college alumni associations for additional networking opportunities.”

“Networking is key right now,” Wildfong said. “The old cliché, ‘It’s not what you know, it’s who you know' is no more real than right now. Unfortunately, so many job seekers only use the Internet—or worse yet, Facebook—to look for work. They miss out on the most powerful job search tool they have—making connections with friends, family, neighbors, classmates, colleagues, or former co-workers or bosses to find out about job opportunities. As for online opportunities, using LinkedIn as a networking tool is an excellent way to build a network for job seekers. Volunteering is important as it also helps with networking.”

Attend WCC’s Job Fair

The importance of attending a job fair can never be overestimated. “In addition to personally talking to employers about specific positions they might have available at the time of the fair, it is an excellent opportunity to chat with employers about different positions they might have in the future,” said Worrell. “One may also obtain the names of other people in the organization to contact for positions which might be different from those the recruiter is publicizing.”

WCC will host its 15th Annual Spring Job Fair on Tuesday, March 22, from 1:00pm until 4:00pm in the Morris Lawrence building. About 50 employers are expected to attend the fair, which is sponsored by the Employment Services Center and is free and open to the public. For more information, visit the fair’s webpage or call 734-677-5155.

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