Coach Ned’s College Life Hacks

Books_Is College Really Worth It

Is College Really Worth It?

Tucker Carlson of Fox News has been airing a month-long exposé entitled just that…”Is College Really Worth It?”

Coach Ned says…Heck Yeah!! (But only if you DO something with it)

Allow Coach Ned to identify 3 important facts and how they pertain to this question we ponder;

FACT #1 – You need a college degree to apply for most every company in the USA. (Pertaining to career positions in the corporate world)

Do you realize that in today’s world, Bill Gates and Steve Jobs would not be allowed to interview for the very companies they created because neither has a bachelor’s Degree. Coach Ned doesn’t make the rules; however, this is an undeniable fact. In today’s world, you CAN’T get anywhere in the corporate world without a degree.

Is college worth it? THE ANSWER IS YES. When a degree is not required to apply to IBM, Coca-Cola or Exxon Mobil, then we can discuss and debate the merits of college.

FACT #2 – It’s not what you LEARN in college that matters, it’s what you DO while in college that matters.

Every degree at every college has a curriculum. You go to school, take the class, take the test and repeat the process until you graduate. The more you understand why you go, the better you’ll understand whether it’s worth it. Your degree, which we have established in FACT #1 is necessary, means nothing if you don’t parlay the degree into a career position upon graduation. If you earn a degree and don’t get a job, then college isn’t worth it. HOWEVER, should you work during college to pursue the one reason you go to college (to get a job!), then college IS worth it.

FACT #3 – Grades matter, but it’s not why you think

Coach Ned hears the following all the time, “If I get a 2.1 GPA or a 3.6 GPA, I get the same diploma. So, why should I work hard to earn a good GPA?”

In today’s world, 50% of all graduates are either unemployed or underemployed upon graduation. The main reason; there are far more degrees being handed out than there are jobs. Because of this, companies are being overloaded with applications, and the one way they have chosen to cut down the applications to a manageable number is to qualify a minimum GPA.

Does a company really value a 3.5 GPA student over a 3.4 GPA student? Of course not. Companies just don’t know any other way to cut the number of applicants.  You have to apply to get the interview and you have to interview to get the job so why not work hard to expand your opportunities?

Allow Coach Ned and his staff to guide you along in this process. NextStep College to Career Coaching will assist you and make sure you’re employable and ultimately employed upon graduation.  Is College worth it?  Yes…if you use the NextStep Program.

Contact us today at 972-804-1200 or through our website www.nextstepc2c.com.

Is Graduate School a Good Idea?

Coach Ned is asked this often. Here’s the deal on the Master’s-or-no Master’s question…

Let’s look at the financial circumstances surrounding a Master’s Degree.  Number one, it costs money and, in many cases, a lot of money.  Number two, it takes at least a year.

It’s never a bad idea to have a graduate degree; however, Coach Ned strongly suggests that a student NOT go into further debt to acquire it.  Let’s say the Master’s program costs $40,000 and it takes one year to complete. Not only are you spending the $40,000 (plus expenses like beer & gas), but it actually costs a lot more. Why?? If you graduate and enter into a career making $42,000, the Master’s Degree will actually cost you $40,000 plus the $42,000 you won’t be earning over the next year.

Which is the best scenario?

  1. You graduate with an undergraduate degree at 23 and borrow money to immediately attend Grad School. After your Master’s;

You’re 24 years old with no real professional experience; however, you do have a Graduate degree and $40,000 of additional debt.

  1. You graduate with an undergraduate degree at 23 and begin working at a company while getting your Master’s at night, paying for most of it (because you have a job) and borrowing some of it. It takes two years to complete your Master’s Degree. After your Master’s;

You’re 25 years old, with a Graduate Degree, two years of professional experience and $20,000-$25,000 of additional debt.

  1. Coach Ned always saves the best for last….

You graduate with an undergraduate degree at 23 and begin working at a company while getting your Master’s at night, paid for by your current employer.  It takes two years to complete your Master’s Degree.  After your Master’s;

You’re 25 years old, with a Graduate Degree, two years of professional experience and no additional debt.  WINNER WINNER CHICKEN DINNER!!!!!

 

Even though approximately 50% of all graduates are unemployed or under-employed upon graduation, clients of NextStep College to Career Coaching get career job offer(s) prior to graduation. A Graduate degree is great, but if you’re smart, you’ll leverage your talents and join a company which encourages employees to pursue graduate degrees, and actually helps to pay for it.

NextStep C2C…..Your Insurance Policy for Your College Investment!

www.nextstepc2c.com

972-804-1200

Give us a call.

Which Comes First… the Internship or the Experience?

It can be a real bummer to stumble upon that PERFECT internship, only to find that the company is looking for a candidate with ‘X’ schooling and ‘X’ years of experience. It’s the age-old conundrum…how in the world do you land an internship when you have absolutely no experience? Lucky you…you have wise, old Coach Ned!

Hiring managers aren’t stupid. They realize that most college students aren’t going to be sending in resumes teeming with job experience. So what exactly are they looking for? For starters, they’re going to want to see that you’re involved. In ANYTHING. Sure, you haven’t had a big-kid job, but do you participate in any school clubs? Do you volunteer your time at (insert any worthwhile cause here)? Even listing extracurricular activities shows that you’re filling your time with anything other than frat parties and video games. Find things that interest you, sign up and get it all listed on your resume.

Another great way to get noticed is to have an amazing cover letter. Many job listings will say that this part is optional…don’t fall for it. Especially when your resume is lacking, a cover letter is a terrific way to let a hiring manager know exactly what you have to offer. And don’t think you can just slap one together and call it a day. Do company research. See what they most value. Study the job description and use key words from it to describe your talents and work ethic. Make them think, “This applicant was MADE for our company!” The cover letter is your very first impression…make it a good one.

Career Fairs!!! Coach Ned cannot stress enough how valuable it is to attend career fairs. Where else are you going to find SO MANY recruiters from SO MANY companies ALL IN ONE PLACE? It’s like a college student gold mine! However, don’t expect to just roll out of bed, grab a stack of resumes and hand them out all willy-nilly. Take some time to prepare…

Make yourself look presentable.

  • Gentlemen: wear a suit and tie, a belt and shine up your dress shoes. Bonus points for a nice watch.
  • Ladies: find a business-appropriate dress (not the one you wore to the bar last Saturday), or nice slacks, a blouse and a blazer. Plan on being there for awhile, so unless you have the world’s comfiest 4-inch heels, opt for something a little less painful.

Prepare for conversation. Coach Ned also stresses career fairs because they give you the opportunity for face time. I’m sure you’ve heard that skills can be taught, but attitude (i.e. your AWESOME personality) cannot. When looking for optimal candidates, recruiters and hiring managers are looking for people who will be a good fit within their company. If you show up with a smile, a firm handshake and a personable demeanor, they are going to remember you. Practice small talk with your roommate or a friend before attending, so you’ll be less nervous and more comfortable letting your real personality shine through. After meeting with each recruiter, be sure to end the conversation just as you began it…smile, shake his or her hand and ALWAYS thank them for their time. If you play your cards right, your resume will go in the “keep” pile without ever being read.

Preparing for and landing that first internship can be daunting, but just remember that you aren’t the first un- or under-experienced college student to obtain one. Follow Coach Ned’s advice and you’ll be gainfully employed in no time.

NextStep C2C…..Your Insurance Policy for Your College Investment!

GAP YEAR

What Does Coach Ned think of “A Gap Year”….just take a guess!

Ah…the infamous “Gap Year”.  Those of you out there in Blog Land unfamiliar with this term, please allow Coach Ned to explain.

After completing the burdensome task of obtaining an undergraduate degree, which evidently can only be likened to climbing Mt. Everest in a bathing suit and without oxygen, the graduate has “earned” and “deserves” an entire year off before going to work.

Coach Ned has been informed many times by parents that “a year abroad in Europe” or “a trip sailing the Seven Seas” is just what Junior needs to prepare himself for the real world.  After all, Junior will be working the rest of his life…and he’s worked so hard to finish college, and he’ll never have this chance again!

PLEEEEEEEASE! 

Gap Year? 4 or 5 years of college WAS your “Gap Year”! If Coach Ned could make a career out of going to college, every semester he’d be first in line to sign up!

College exists for one purpose…to get a career job after college.

If there were no universities, if the idea of college was never presented to mankind, would parents send their children off to a $150,000, 4-year fun camp to take classes, go to Fraternity parties and cheer at football games?  Of course not!

Needless to say, Coach Ned would recommend NOT taking a year off. Remember, 50% of all graduates in the USA are either unemployed or under-employed upon graduation. It’s not a given that everyone who would like a career job will be offered one prior to graduating.

Working on your career WHILE you’re in college and taking advantage of all the business opportunities and contacts presented to you WHILE you’re in college only apply to an immediate career position directly after college.

Envision the following scenario;

  1. A company is so impressed by your resume that they invite you to interview for a position.
  2. Then, after interviewing you two to three times, they are so impressed with your knowledge of business and excellent communicative skills, they invite you (over the other 250 applicants ) to be part of their company.
  3. They then say, “Go ahead and take your Gap Year and when you’re rested and ready, come report to work”.

Just doesn’t happen that way folks.

NextStep C2C…..Your Insurance Policy for Your College Investment!

www.nextstepc2c.com

OMG…..WHAT SHALL I WEAR?

 

Preparing for interviews is important stuff and many of Coach Ned’s young “professionals to be” pose the question….What shall I wear? Read more

DON’T MAKE ME CHASE YOU DOWN

I (Coach Ned) visit with many business owners and ask a lot of questions regarding what they like or don’t like when it comes to working with college graduates. Read more

THE 6th CLASSROOM

Coach Ned and all at Nextstep are passionate about the 6th Classroom.

Most students wait far too long before shaping their resumes for employment after college. By the way here’s a hint….the last semester of your senior year is too late!!!

Read more

CHOOSING OR CHANGING YOUR MAJOR?……..DONT FORGET THE MOST IMPORTANT VARIABLE

Coach Ned here with some tips on a subject that once again came up this week, choosing or changing a major. Read more

DON’T LIMIT YOUR OPTIONS

Hi Parents / College Students….

Coach Ned here with another tip you can live by.  Working with college students, I find too many practice “tunnel vision” while looking for an internship and/or career job. Read more