How to Find a Strong First Job After College - Deepstash
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The social contacts that matter

The social contacts that matter

Most of us, especially teachers, often assume that when students from low-income communities go to school, study well, and graduate, they’re likely to be on the road to economic mobility. That’s not always true.

We don’t account for behind-the-scenes coaching and development opportunities that young people from high-income families get. This looks like the dinner table conversations with parents, a career coach to figure out what college to apply to, or a family friend who can connect you with the right people for your first internship.

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Social capital

Building social capital is critical for college students, especially first-generation students from low-income families. To be fair, though, this is a hard one. A lot of these college students feel awkward and unsure about networking or reaching out to strangers. 

There’s a myth that reaching out to others can be perceived as disrespectful or intrusive. However, this is far from the truth. We live in a world that runs on relationship-building — and networking is a skill that can make all the difference.

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How do students identify and cultivate their network?

It starts with their immediate, personal network. This could include their peers, friends, professors, alumni, or an employer (if they’re working part-time or doing an internship). 

They should take a hard look at this network and see if someone they know can help them with what they need.

Next, they should think about all the people this person in their network might know.

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A quality job

A quality job is a job that puts a young professional entering the workforce on the path to economic mobility and helps them grow and advance in their career.

There are four dimensions to identifying a quality job.

  • It must align with your interests.
  • It must provide scope for learning and development.
  • It must pave pathways to promotion.
  • It must help you earn the full dollar.

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