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How to improve your job prospects as a college student.

It’s that time of year when college students pack up their dorm rooms and head home for the holidays. With their eyes focused on next September, they put together a resume and pound the pavement to find a job — ANY job.

Many of these jobs will be a less-than-enjoyable means to an end so that students can scrape together enough money for next semester. If your holiday job doesn’t fit your idea of the perfect job and it’s easy to adopt the mindset “I just need to get through the next few months and I won’t have to do this ever again.”

It’s easy to take a short term view, but I’d like to reframe what you think of that summer job and how you can use it to help you improve your future job prospects.

Think further ahead
Think about what will happen in your life when you graduate from college in just a couple of years: You’ll probably need to rent an apartment, furnish it, get a car and pursue your career. You may meet a
serious romantic partner.
To get all of these things in just a couple of years, you need to be financially secure.

Your holiday job DOES matter
You might detest the holiday job you have right now because you only see it as a way to scrape together some money for next semester. But what you really have is a stepping stone that can allow you to start saving. Here’s what I suggest:

And on those particularly rough days when you can’t wait to get back to school, remember that this holiday job isn’t a “time out” from life. It’s a building block to healthier financial lifestyle, and the wise moves you make today can help your future job prospects and pay dividends in the future.

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