Marty Caivano
Chris Krook, left, gets help with his resume Tuesday from Ann Herrmann, a career counselor at the University of Colorado’s Career Services office. Krook, who graduated in winter 2008, when the hiring picture was grim, is looking for a job in civil engineering.

If you go

What: CU’s commencement ceremony

When: 8:30 a.m. May 7

Where: Folsom Stadium


How to land the job

Tailor your resume to individual jobs, don’t just send a generic version.

Follow-up after you send your resume, but don’t be pushy.

Send a thank-you note after every interview. It shows your interest and professionalism.

Google yourself. Find out what the Web says about you and delete as needed.

Use the Web to your advantage. Don’t stick with one job-hunting site; use several, including social-media sites like Facebook and LinkedIn.

Source: CU’s Career Services

Ally Goodman, a communication and sociology major at the University of Colorado, will start her career with Sun Life Financial immediately after graduating next Friday.

She said she landed an ideal job — as a sales representative for the international financial-services company — by launching her search at the start of her final semester of school, in January.

“I knew a lot of other people that couldn’t get jobs last year, so I realized quickly that I needed to get an early start,” Goodman said. “I feel really lucky since I’m the only one of my friends who has a job so far and graduation is getting really close.”

But there’s good news for graduating seniors still in the job hunt: Hiring projections continue to climb, after bottoming out last spring.

“It’s not going to be easy — job searches never are — but jobs are available, and it’s up to the student to do the work,” said Lisa Severy, CU’s director of Career Services. “Students need to take advantage of the services here and the opportunities they have.”

Networking, online marketing and flexibility are the keys to a successful job hunt, Severy said.

“It is often the students who have their heart set on a certain job, at a specific company, in the perfect location that have the hardest time finding work,” she said. “Their dream job might not be available right now, but there are others, so you just have to have an open mind and be willing to work your way up.”

According to a report from the National Association of Colleges and Employers, hiring rates are projected to increase 5.3 percent this spring, up from negative 6.9 percent in the fall of 2009.

It will be the first semester to produce positive hiring results since the fall of 2008, the report stated. At the worst point last spring, employers were hiring 22 percent fewer graduates.

The association expects hiring will improve in nearly all reporting industries, but jobs in accounting, engineering and retail will be most accessible for the graduates of 2010.

Graduating senior Wade Marquess said he’s not planning to settle for a job he doesn’t like.

“I might just volunteer or something for now,” Marquess said. “I don’t want to take a scut job if I don’t have to. I want some out-of-the-box experience and I realize I may have to take a pay cut to get it.”

After earning his bachelor’s degree in history, Marquess said he plans to attend law school in the next couple of years, so that will take the pressure off immediately jumping into a career.

“Luckily I have my parents to fall back on,” he said. “They said they’d help me out as long as I was being productive so I’ll start the search a couple weeks after graduation. Give myself a little time to recoup.”

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