How FSU Students Can Use Handshake to Find a Job

By Lexie Pitzen | Photo: The Florida State University Career Center

I quit my first college job on the same day I started it.

Struggling to find a job as a freshman at Florida State University, after applying for at least 30 jobs near campus, I finally got a call back from the same chain sandwich shop I worked at back home. The job was unnecessarily stressful, the building dirty, and the area unsafe. As tired as I was of searching for jobs, it was clear to me that I needed to wait for a better fit. And, I found the job that I still have today by using the Florida State University Career Center.

The FSU Career Center offers mock interviews, career fairs, and more. As a freshman, I visited the Career Center to get my resume critiqued. I hadn’t revised it since high school, and I wanted to look professional as I searched for my first college job.

The Career Center advisor looked over my resume and then laid an inche-thick binder onto the table in front of me. She opened it to reveal hundreds of sample resumes and leafed through pages separated into categories like “finance” and “computer science.” We chose a template that beautifully organized my messy teenage work history, and we brainstormed catchy descriptions for my previous jobs. After my resume makeover, I walked back to my dorm feeling like a real, working adult.

The next step in my job hunt was perfecting my profile on Handshake, a networking resource that is free for FSU students and alumni. I uploaded my resume and added additional information: projects, awards, a headshot, and relevant classes, and once my profile was complete, Handshake unveiled a realm of job postings I had seen nowhere else online—internships, entry-level jobs, and on-campus jobs. Many applications took only one click, saving me valuable time to do homework.

I applied for a job located a 3-minute walk away from my dorm, and completed a long interview and training process. I’ve worked there ever since. Especially as a new freshman with approximately 0 connections in Tallahassee, the Career Center played a huge role in getting my first job. The longer I’ve been here, the more opportunities have developed organically from networking, but taking advantage of on-campus resources was an essential first step.

FSU students can visit the Career Center online and inside the Dunlap Student Success Center at 100 South Woodward Avenue (between the Globe and the Health and Wellness Center). The Career Center has many events scheduled this semester, including the Seminole Futures All Majors Career and Internship Fair (Sept. 19), Pizza and a Major (Oct. 1), and the Seminole Suit Up (Oct. 6). Take advantage of these free resources and events, especially if you are new to Tallahassee or actively searching for a job.

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