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Life After College: 7 Practical Tips To Move On From College To Real World

April 2, 2015

College is a time of adjustments, be it for higher education or for the world of work. When you entered it, you had to adjust to more difficult subjects, a more diverse group of people, and if you’re from Manila, I’m sure that moving all the way to the best school in the Philippines forced some major lifestyle changes. But now that your graduation is near, you’ll be adjusting once again. It’s a difficult period to transition to, so much so that even students from the best schools will find it a struggle.

It’s not easy, so here are some steps that I hope will help you in preparing for the real world.

1. Plan Ahead

plan ahead

When you hit the last term of your second to the last school year, things are going to happen so fast, next thing you know it’s been a month or two after graduation and you still don’t have any concrete goal. So, put into mind what specific career path you want to take as early as possible, and you’ll be on your way really fast.

2. Discuss life after college with your friends

Yey! Groupmates.. O.o

Your friends feel the same way as you do about college ending and facing the real world. Talk to them about how you feel, what are you planning to do, and ask them their thoughts and plans regarding the whole thing. By sharing, you can brainstorm about what steps to take when you step into the workplace.

3. Take your OJT seriously


Average students see OJT as just another school requirement, while good students see it as a preparation for the real world. If you view it like the latter, then you’ll be able to adjust more easily to a work-oriented environment.

4. Get a part-time job before graduation

If you only have a few minors left, a part-time would be good for you. A full-time job might be in conflict with your subjects’ schedules, so a part-time could put your idle time into good use. Instead of waiting out the empty days, you get to do something productive that earns you extra money, experience, and practical skills that you can not only write on your resume, but also use in your future employments.

5. Attend seminars while you wait

Some companies, especially those that are not urgently hiring, take a lot of time before you receive a call or an email for an initial interview. While you wait for them to contact you, attend seminars and trainings so you can learn new and important things. However, don’t just attend every seminar; go to those that will help you on your chosen field. You can add these seminars in your resume, and they will help you get hired.

6. Look for a job

I was told there would be jobs

This is the reason why you studied college in the first place. Visit classified ads sites like Jobstreet and Jobsdb and find entry-level work related to your desired career. You’ll meet new people, do and learn new things, and earn money, skills, and experience. This is a fun chapter of your life, so enjoy it.

7. Remember your goals

no idea after college

There are times when it will feel a bit too much, so it’s easy to reminisce about your carefree college days. There’s nothing wrong with that, but you need to accept that it’s over. Instead of being distracted, refresh yourself with what you aim to do and become. Through this, you can redirect your mental energies into planning and implementation, and assess and correct any career-related mistakes.

With the points I have given, I hope that you can adjust better in the real world. Just like college on your first day, it is big and challenging. And just like college, you’re going to enjoy it too.