Job Search Strategies

Get Organized

Start your job search by getting organized. It may be helpful to create a Word or Excel document to help you keep track of all of the opportunities you are exploring. Create columns for the following:

  • Position title
  • Company
  • Contact person (if one is listed in the job announcement)
  • Contact information
  • Application deadline
  • Application materials required
  • Date you applied
  • Date you followed up with a phone call or e-mail
  • Date you interviewed
  • Date you sent thank you notes
  • Date you followed up via phone or e-mail to ask if they need any additional information
  • Date you withdrew your name (if you applied and then decided you didn’t want to pursue it any further)
  • Notes

Look for open positions

Job Search Websites

Husker Hire Link
Human Services Federation
Cornhusker Help Wanted

Lincoln Journal Star
Lincoln Jobs
Channel 10/11 Job Search
Nebraska Department of Labor

Local Employers

State of Nebraska
Federal Government
University of Nebraska-Lincoln

Lincoln Public Schools
Cedars Youth Services

Lincoln Action Program
Family Service

CenterPointe
Developmental Services of Nebraska

St. Monica’s Behavioral Health Services
Catholic Social Services

Lutheran Family Services
Talent Plus

Gallup
Bryan LGH Hospital

National Research Corporation

Prepare Application Materials

Portfolios
What is a portfolio?

A new trend in the job search process the portfolio, which is a binder that compiles documentation of all your skills, abilities, and accomplishments. You should begin developing a portfolio during college, but it is something that you will continue to add to throughout your career.

Why should I create a portfolio?
  • You can use the career portfolio in a job or graduate school interview. For example, if you are asked a question about your communication skills, you are able to not only answer the question but also present a research paper in which you earned an A and a PowerPoint presentation you created to accompany an in-class oral presentation. These types of documented examples give credibility to your verbal answers.
  • It is a convenient way to store important items such as awards and certificates) that often get misplaced, damaged, or buried in your parents’ basement.
How do I create a portfolio?
  • Buy a three-ring binder and a box of clear sheet protectors. Collect any items you feel demonstrate your strengths, such as those listed below and put each item in a clear sheet protector in the binder.
  • Organize the binder anyway you like, such as using dividers to create Internship, Academics, and Volunteer sections.
  • Once you start the portfolio, you can easily slip in new items throughout your college years.
Items to Include
  • Resume
  • Letters of recommendation from faculty or supervisors
  • List of References
  • Research papers or projects you scored well on
  • PowerPoint Presentations you created
  • Awards you received
  • Thank you notes you received for a job well done
  • Congratulatory letters you received
  • Pictures from events such as conferences or community events in which you were involved
  • Certificates you received
  • Tests you scored well on
  • Diplomas

UNL’s Career Services office is a great resource for you as you prepare for your job search. They can provide you with 1) assistance with writing your resume and cover letter, 2) advice on who to use and how to communicate with references, 3) interviewing tips and more!

Professionalism

The people you are meeting as a college student are the people who will be responsible for helping you establish your career. Being professional is crucial to making a good impression and landing a job, so be sure to follow these tips:

Appearance

Dress: Refer to Career Service’s What to Wear Guide

Hygiene: Bed head and dirty/wrinkled clothes send the message that you don’t care, and that’s not what you want people to think of you. Also refrain from wearing perfume or cologne as some people have allergies. You want people to remember you and what you have to say, not how you smell!

Technology

Email Address: In the professional world, email addresses contain your name and do not give any reference to your personal life. “bbplaya87,” “sexxxychic00,” and “sayyourprayers” are all inappropriate for professional email addresses. If you are not willing to give up your current email account, consider creating a second “professional” email account. Also, “Hey” is not an appropriate greeting. Make sure to begin e-mail correspondence with Dear XXX or Good morning/afternoon.

Social Networking: Set your privacy settings on Facebook and other social networking sites so that you have a high level of control over who views your pages. However, know that potential employers may gain access or information through other users. Do not let your weekend pictures or friends’ dumb posts interfere with your career goals. If you are in the market for a full-time job, you may want to consider disabling your account until you are employed. Be sure you Google your name to find out what an employer will see if they also Google you.

Slang/profanity: It is never appropriate to swear or use excessive slang when communicating with a professional contact.

Texting Language: Never use texting language in emails (or out loud for that matter). Write in complete sentences with proper punctuation and capitalization. Do not use shortened versions of any words. (i knw it t8s 4evr but idc)

Contact Information: Always include your first and last name and contact information at the end of an email. (As a UNL student, you are identified in the computer systems by your NU ID, so include it in any communication you have with UNL faculty and employees who need to access your records to assist you.)

Voicemail Greeting: “You know what to do.” Beeeep. is not an appropriate voicemail greeting. As a college student, people will be calling you now (not your parents) with information. If you do not answer, the person calling needs to know they reached the correct person. “You have reached Mike Smith. I am sorry that I am unable to take your call at this time. Please let a message and I will return your call as soon as possible.”

Finding a Career in Psychology - Career Preparation - Job Search Strategies