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New Career Center site launched

Amanda Gray | Friday, January 23, 2009

In the current less-than-stellar economic situation, finding a job is a difficult task to undertake. This task is even harder for young college graduates just making their debuts in the work force, so Notre Dame’s Career Center is trying to alleviate some of that pressure.

Associate Director Kevin Monahan said the Career Center has begun to use www.linkedin.com, a professional networking site geared at connecting past alum with recent graduates. The Career Center began using this Web site in September of 2007, but it’s just now starting to “grow in leaps and bounds,” Monahan said.

“This site focused on professional relationships,” he said. “Students were wondering, ‘How can I connect?’ This site helps them connect with alumni, who join because they want to help and connect with recent graduates.”

These alumni are eager to help, Monahan said.

“Building relationships – that’s what it’s all about,” he said.

The Web site is very easy to search, and many criteria can help sort through the data, Monahan said.

“There are almost 6,700 alumni listed,” he said.

Setting up a profile on the Web site only takes a few minutes, Monahan said.

When it comes to advice for graduating seniors, Monahan has one definite rule.

“Start now. Don’t wait,” he said.

One senior entering the job market soon is Katie O’Connell.

“The Career Center has been really helpful with networking,” O’Connell said. “They have provided me with contact information of Notre Dame graduates in the field that I would like to work in.”

Sometimes the search can be frustrating, especially in this market, O’Connell said.

“The hardest part, for me, is staying positive when a company doesn’t have anything open or you don’t get the job.”

But she does try to keep looking.

“It’s difficult to stay up, but keep e-mailing and speaking to people in the field you want to work in,” O’Connell said.

Monahan said the current economy has noticeably affected the job search.

“Instead of firms having, say, 10 jobs available, now they might only have four,” he said. “I want to encourage seniors to ‘hit the pavement.’ Networking is paramount, and the key to networking is building relationships and trust.”

When it comes to job interviews, Monahan urges students to “do your homework.”

“Know the company. Know your achievements. Also, review practice questions.”