Generation Z definitely does things differently. According to a recent survey, 1 in 5 youngsters today may forego a college education.
There are many reasons behind this shift, including college expenses, heavy workload, as well as the realization that there are other avenues one can use to reach their career goals.
If you belong to this school of thought, finding a job might pose some challenges not faced by job seekers with a solid college education.
The good news is, many people have navigated this process and gone on to have excellent careers.
Here are some tips to help improve your job prospects without a college education.
1. Network Widely
Networking brings a professional circle around you that could help grow your career.
One way it does this is by increasing your visibility. Your networks can alert you and put in a good word for you whenever they come across suitable internships and job vacancies.
This gives you an edge over other applicants without the privilege of good networks. However, you must make an effort to nurture and grow these relationships so that they are mutually beneficial.
2. Look into Apprenticeships
Higher apprenticeships are equivalent to a foundational university degree.
If you opt for this option, you will gain job-relevant skills, make savings from college fees and earn while you work while building experience.
What’s more, apprentices are now earning better salaries than university-educated candidates, which is a plus.
With these benefits, it’s no doubt that apprenticeships are considered a great way to get a job without a university education.
3. Craft a Killer Resume
A good resume can help you look more professional and even distract a potential employer from the fact that you did not attend college.
It’s all about how you package yourself.
Take the time to create a great looking resume or to hire professional resume writing services.
Regardless of whether you hire a service or do it yourself, ensure to include all other formal and informal training you have had, including internships and volunteer work.
While these do not replace formal training, they showcase learned skills and the knowledge you possess.
This comes in handy for jobs that place more emphasis on skills and technical know-how over certification.
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4. Consider Other Learning Opportunities
While you can get your foot through the door initially, you will need to work a bit harder to get promotions and other career advancement opportunities.
It is, therefore important to be serious about personal development. You can demonstrate this by taking online courses, attending seminars and industry events, or even approaching mentors.
Online courses give you certifications that you can use to convince employers about your competencies and skills.
Some seminars give participation certificates to attendants. These showcase your initiative to learn, which communicates positively to employers.
5. Polish Your Interviewing Skills
If your resume or networks get you an interview, bring your A-game.
Use this opportunity to show your industry knowledge, work ethic, and positive attitude.
In a nutshell, prove that lack of a college qualification does not handicap you in any way.
You must also project the image of a serious professional. For example, present a great resume, and have with you a neat folder, arrive on time and dress the part.
You must also show up on time.
The fact that you lack college qualifications might come up in the interview. Do not let this blindside you. Use your networks and online resources to learn how to navigate this issue like a pro.
Do not be Too Hard on Yourself
Resist the urge to put unreasonable deadlines to when you should find a job.
Many factors go into it, many of which are not within your control. Instead, focus on what you can do to grow your skills and make the best out of every chance you get.