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Agrimarketing : Canadian Agribusiness Employer Guide 08
RECENT GRADUATES OFFER ADVICE JOB SEARCHING After high school, Meyer thought she would study plant breeding because she had a strong interest in life science. The summer after her first year of college, she worked as a research assistant at Agriculture & Agri-Food Canada’s Beaverlodge Research Farm. It was there that she learned research wasn’t for her. “I found the research really inter- esting, but didn’t thrive in the lab environment,” she said. “At first it was discouraging, because I thought I was sure that was what I wanted to do, but the experience has helped me out in the long run.” Meyer worked as an agronomy assistant at Cargill AgHorizons her second and third summer in college and was a campus ambassador for AgCareers.com during her second year in college. She said all of her work experiences have contributed to her career search. “I enjoyed working with agro- nomics within Cargill AgHorizons and was able to develop useful sales skills as an AgCareers.com ambas- sador,” Meyer said. “Out of univer- sity I want to start in a position where I can use both my technical expertise and my sales ability.” Meyer said it’s important for stu- dents to take advantage of work SEARCHING RECAP 1. Start early! 2. Take advantage of resources both on and off campus. 3. Make industry connections by utilizing professional organiza- tions, attending career fairs, and participating in work experiences and job shadowing experiences. 4. Know that the search takes time and effort. Among the many services available to students is the popularwww.AgCareers.comWeb site that regularly reports 2,000 job openings each month. experiences and use them as key learning opportunities to discover what they are good at and what they are passionate about. “It’s been primarily my work experiences, not just my university study that have helped me discover what I want to do,” she said. “Work experiences are more than just a job; they are a way to gain insight about your future career choice.” HELPFUL ADVICE In addition to work experiences and utilizing multiple resources, what other job searching advice is there? Risling reiterates the importance of starting early. “The biggest mistake students make is underestimating the amount of time and effort a successful job search demands,” he said. “It’s important to understand that prepar- ing your job search documents, find- ing opportunities and securing a job can be a very long process, especially in competitive fields.” If a student starts early and has applied to various positions, but isn’t getting very far in the applica- tion process, what should they do? Pedersen said at that time, a student needs to re-evaluate their application process. “If you apply and get several inter- views, but they don’t result in job offers, then maybe you need some help with your interview skills,” she said. “If you don’t even get an inter- view, then maybe you need assistance with your resume. Remember that it is always good to ask for feedback after you apply, because it will be beneficial for your job search.” Risling said disappointment can be a large part of the job search process, but he encourages students to stick with it. “Be prepared and be willing to learn throughout the process,” he said. “The job market has its ups and downs, but you will eventually find something that suits your needs. The most important thing is to keep at it.” 11