The Secret to Landing Your Dream Job Straight out of College

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You’ve heard it before: it’s a tough job market for new college graduates. At 11.5%, the unemployment rate for millennials is nearly three times that of the US as a whole. Of those who do manage to land a job, 25% are overqualified for their position. And with 1.8 million new graduates entering the workforce in 2018, those numbers aren’t looking to improve anytime soon.

As the talent pool becomes increasingly competitive, employers are expecting more of applicants than ever before - even recent college graduates applying for entry-level positions. It’s the ultimate dilemma. How are you supposed to get experience when no one will hire you so that you can get experience?

We’ve been preparing top college students to enter the global workforce since 2013, so we’re experts in what does and doesn’t make a candidate stand out. We’ve reviewed tens of thousands of resumes, conducted thousands of interviews, and mentored hundreds of alumni through their first job hunts that landed them at companies like Google, Amazon, and Facebook. While they all reached their goals in different ways, there’s one common factor that stands out, and we believe it can make or break your success as a candidate.

The secret to landing your dream job straight out of college is demonstrating that you already have the skills needed to do the job.

Let us break it down for you.

As a recent (or soon-to-be) graduate, you’re proud of your university and everything you’ve accomplished there in four years. You want to highlight the internship you completed, the clubs you joined, and your stellar GPA. Don’t get us wrong – you should! But to really stand out in a pool of other new grads with similar qualifications, you need to prove that you have developed skills relevant to the role you’re applying for. Instead of just listing your experience, try using your resume to answer questions like these:

  • What hard skills or certifications did you earn during your internship?
  • What leadership responsibilities did you take on in your student organization?
  • What unique, industry-specific classes did you take, and what were some of the projects you completed?

Of course, you should only list skills you’re confident in, which is why you want to start thinking about these questions early on. Look at job descriptions and talk to mentors in the field you’re interested in, and start making a list of desired skills and qualifications for entry-level positions. Take them into consideration when choosing classes and applying for internships. With a comprehensive set of advanced skills on your resume right out of the gate, we guarantee you’ll catch potential employers’ attention.


Want to know what really stands out on a resume? Interning abroad at a startup where you solve real problems and complete projects hands-on. Through Sage Corps’ global entrepreneurship program, you can do just that – and more. You’ll earn resume-building hard skills and certifications through an online curriculum, plus you’ll get access to the Sage Network, a group of program alumni and business leaders who provide career mentorship and job opportunities.

Click the button below to learn more about our 19 global program cities.

Sage AdviceLisa Melillo