Going from high school to college can be a difficult transition.  You’re away from your home and family for the first time in your life, and while this can be exciting, it also means you’re responsible for showing up to class on time, holding a job, and even paying bills.  You’d think that the transition from college to career would be less of a shock to your system, but this might not be the case. 

Certainly you have responsibilities as a college student that you didn’t have when you lived at home and attended high school.  But going from your college campus into the real world can be a big shock as well.  Without the support system of school and friends, you may feel isolated and unprepared.  Plus, your student loan payments are about to get tacked on to any monthly bills you already pay.  Then there is the onus to kick start your career – working as a barista for the rest of your life simply won’t do.

How to Make a Successful Transition From College to Career

The good news is that you’ve already made a successful transition before, so you know you are capable of handling this major life change.  The question is how to transition from college life to the working world with less stress and fewer roadblocks.  If you’re smart, you’ll begin the process before you even graduate.  By the time most students are wrapping up an undergrad program they’re already living off campus.  If graduation is looming and you’re still living in dorms, Greek row, or student housing, it’s time to round up some roommates to share rent and utilities and seek off-campus housing.

This is also a great time to reassess your finances and make sure your budget allows for some wiggle room.  If at all possible, you should set aside a rainy day fund, just in case it takes a while to get hired.  Success doesn’t necessarily have to entail landing the first job you apply for.  When you prepare for setbacks, you can face them with ease and continue working to meet your goals.

As for finding a job and starting your career, this is something you should start thinking about prior to graduation as well.  Internships should be part of your plan.  They can help you to add some experience to your resume and they may even result in job offers before you graduate.  At the very least you’ll have the chance to network with colleagues already working in your preferred industry, and this could result in referrals, tips about open positions, or even employment opportunities down the line.

Before you finish your degree from USC Online, you need to finesse your resume and brush up on your interview skills.  You should also audit your social media accounts.  Many employers now check up on candidates online to see what their profiles reveal.  You should make your personal profiles private before you ever start seeking jobs and then set up professional, public profiles for prospective employers to stumble across, showing them that you have the wherewithal not to let them see your drunken spring break pics.  When it comes to making a successful transition from college to your career, preparedness, common sense, and responsible behavior are your best bet.