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How to Get a Job with a Liberal Arts Degree: Part 1 of 5

Michigan Creative

In today’s technologically driven society, liberal arts degrees are overlooked and taken for granted. Students and parents worry about the value of an undergraduate degree and whether or not the degree will guarantee a job after graduation – a job that will be able to pay off student loan debt and provide the means for a comfortable life. Not to sound cliché, but if you are an individual with or thinking about obtaining a liberal arts degree, the world is your oyster. A liberal arts education allows you to develop strong communication, analytic and problem solving skills. Such skills are transferrable to most careers, given the proper experience and resume. This series breaks down the process of applying for a job and securing an interview for applicants with raw skills and underwhelming work experience.

Every job requires some level of previous achievement to prove to your potential employer that you are a skilled worker and team player. Experience can be previous jobs, internships, volunteer experience, club membership(s), sports participation and/or major curriculum. I expound upon these different types of experience in parts 4 and 5 of this series.

Experience is nothing if you are unable to market it to your prospective employer. In your resume, you must be able to succinctly market yourself and your experience. If you apply to multiple positions at one time, each application’s resume should be uniquely tailored to the position being applied for – yes, this means you will have to revise your resume each time you apply for a job! For example, if applying for an internship at the Governor’s office, you can leave out the lawn-mowing job you had in high school. Experience that is irrelevant/does not give value to the position being applied for does not belong on your resume.

Many people are discouraged by the seemingly tedious task of rewriting their resume. You must come to grips with the importance of utilizing key words and terms in your resume in order to establish yourself as a worthy candidate. Tailoring your resume to fit the requirements of the position also helps you learn more about the position and company. Believe it or not, if your resume is good enough to secure an interview, you still have to prove to your potential employer that you are knowledgeable about the details of the position and the company’s purpose and mission.

In part 2 of this series I will discuss how to tailor your resume to fit the standards of a position, and how to market yourself to differentiate yourself from other applicants.

David A. Criss – I’m a storyteller with a liberal arts degree in Political Theory and Constitutional Democracy. I write about education, careers and happiness. I create three types of content for my readers: content that informs, content that entertains, and content that manages to do both.