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Despite pandemic obstacles, the job prospects look bright for rising college seniors

college students
Posted at 1:31 PM, Aug 17, 2021
and last updated 2021-08-17 16:32:57-04

In order to reach the next generation of job seekers, Madeline Mann meets them where they are, and that is on TikTok and YouTube.

Mann runs career advice channels on those platforms as the Selfmade Millennial. But just as the way to reach job seekers is changing, so is the job search

“To say that the job landscape has changed is a complete understatement,” she said.

Rising college seniors are no strangers to change. The pandemic had forced schools to go remote and many traditional internship opportunities were not available. Though the latter half of their college experience was plagued with obstacles, the silver lining is that so many companies are hiring

Brandi Britton, district president at human resources consulting firm Robert Half, says the job market seniors will be graduating into looks strong.

"If you are a recent college graduate or you're graduating soon, the job market is very good for you," she said.

Britton says the demand for employees is making employers work to attract applications by doing things like shortening their hiring process and offering higher wages.

"The demand is definitely high. There's lots of jobs for a variety of reasons. Companies reduce headcount last year; they're growing again. So, jobs are being created," said Britton.

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the average wage for non-managers is $25.83, which is up almost 8% from the start of the pandemic. However, the fastest-growing wages can be found in industries like hospitality and retail, where wages are up around 10%, so are jobs for blue-collar workers.

With all these openings and many in the corporate world being remote, it may be hard for someone new to the working world to get a sense of the culture or fit of a job. Britton suggests looking into contract work where you can gain experience, but do not have to commit long term.

So, what things can college seniors be doing right now to set themselves up for success? Mann says the skills students gained in remote school and being plugged into this tech-focused world can add weight to your resume.

"It could be that you've built your website or have built a social media following and you're using certain tactics of marketing, you can use that as work samples. All of these things are really powerful and there is so much you can do remotely these days," she said.

No matter what the industry may be, the future for the Class of 2022 looks brighter than the tough years they endured to get there.