From gathering and customizing caps and gowns to planning out events to celebrate the milestone, graduation illustrates the excitement of what one’s future will hold. The coronavirus pandemic abruptly shifted the environment for students, pushing Sam Houston State University’s commencement ceremony to the end of July and redefining graduates’ journeys towards entering the workforce.
Joblessness claims climbed by a record 6.65 million, and economists are predicting unemployment could rise as high as 20% in the coming months, according to The Hechinger Report.
Reports are calculating that college graduates are entering the worst job market since the Great Depression. This revelation intertwined with the rapidly deteriorating U.S. economy continues to remind the nation that recovery will not be swift.
SHSU Director of Career Services Pam Laughlin spoke about the challenges graduating seniors could face.
“It will certainly be a competitive job market for graduating seniors to enter,” Laughlin said. “The unemployment rate is around 15% and could eventually go as high as 20%, according to some economists. Employers increasingly have shifted to recruiting virtually. Virtual networking sessions, interviews and online onboarding are more prevalent than before the COVID-19 pandemic.”
Laughlin offered tips to students to help overcome uncertainty and defeat as they finish this semester.
“According to a recent blog on the CollegeGrad website, [students] should finish their academic year as strong as possible, shift their job search online, avoid procrastinating to start the job search, follow up on any job offers without delay and be willing to be flexible,” Laughlin said.
At no charge, SHSU Career Services works to assist current students and alumni in career readiness through a variety of programs such as resume development, cover letter writing assistance, workshops, mock interviewing and more. Graduating students can polish up their networking skills, increase their academic and technological knowledge and learn to invest in themselves.
Career Services is also hosting their first Virtual Teacher Career Fair on Wednesday, April 29 from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. As of April 23, 70 school districts have registered to attend, according to Laughlin.
For opportunities to gather more tips and reassurance, SHSU Career Services now offers online appointments via Campus Connect. For more information on the services they offer visit https://www.shsu.edu/dept/career-services/.