Ahh Handshake...to some a necessary resource and to others a scary portal to the unknown. So what is Handshake then?? Handshake is a virtual resume with unlimited connections, events and resources. Learn to use this tool and you have #LEVELEDUP the career search game.
Now for a disclaimer, I am NOT saying get on handshake and apply for the first 20 jobs you see. Instead, network, follow employers, go to career fairs, create an impressive portfolio and build REAL connections to make you and your resume stand out from the crowd. It is here that you will be effectively using Handshake and all of its magic.
Perhaps an analogy to explain, brought to you by the Career Center Guru Garth Motschenbacher. Using Handshake to blindly apply to jobs is the equivalent to your odds in winning the lotto. But, what if you got a couple of numbers to the winning ticket?? That would up your chances significantly. This is exactly how using handshake to research, reach out and attend events with companies will help get the job (or win the lotto)! Below are the top three tips that have helped me along my journey to the internship world.
Create a strong profile: This may seem simple. But it is SO important to have your most recent clubs, experiences, courses, resume and "my journey" section in your profile. You don't want to sell yourself short! Complete your profile and don't leave things out. You never know when an employer might connect with you over a common interest or extracurricular. For the about me section, SELL yourself. Show employers you are an engineering student looking for work, include your recent work/projects and what makes you hirable and unique. AND include your email so they can reach out.
Complete "Your Career Interests" Section: You will find this section when you hover over your profile picture in the upper right. How you fill out this section will dictate the jobs and companies that Handshake suggests for you. So, the more accurately you fill this out, the better fit the jobs will be. If you aren't sure what you want, keep it general! From these recommended jobs, you can find employers that you like and give them a "follow". When you follow the employers you can see when they have posted new jobs or are attending MSU events #HACK.
Build Connections/Attend Events: In the virtual world, it is easier than ever to get one on one time with an employer. On Handshake, go to the events tab. Here you have access to all career fairs, info sessions, networking events, mock interviews and more! This is your ticket to speak with employers from all over! Message them via Handshake or email with your resume and brief introduction of yourself and make that connection! (more on this in the "Lets Get Virtual and Get the Job")
And poof! You are a Handshake know-it-all! No go out there and get the job! Stay tuned and GO GREEN!