Having entered the last semester of my senior year, I am now completely consumed by cover letters, resumes/CV’s, spreadsheets of company research, and an overall feeling of panic and ineptitude. Since the beginning of the semester, I have sent 40 applications, written 12 emails of inquiry and answered 2 phone calls from companies begging me to sling insurance, and have since heard absolutely nothing of promise. Additionally, companies now use entirely automated application systems which exclude any chance of an applicant calling to inquire about the status of an application, following up, or requesting an interview. If combined, the deliberate dodging of communication, economic slump, abundance of unpaid (read: worthless) opportunities and potentially deadly expectations of new hires (like this stuff), the only thing left to rely on for a soon-to-be-college-grad is luck.
Before the end of April, I anticipate having applied to a total of approximately 125 open positions, with the hope of receiving just one utterance of, “we’d like to invite you for an interview.” If allowed to present myself, in person, to a hiring manager, I’m completely confident that I could land a job. However, if one assumes that at least 20 other people apply for the same position (conservatively), and if one crunches the numbers, that gives me a 5% probability of being chosen, assuming we all have comparable skills and qualifications. Now, I know it’s impossible to boil all this down through mathematical probability and that there are an infinite number of other factors involved, but if I’m being perfectly candid, that little 5% is significant to me. It looms in the distance, ever-present as I go about my daily activities, always whispering in my ear…”You want to go for a run? That’s 30 minutes you could spend job hunting. You think you need to work on your thesis? What’s more important, graduating with honors or being able to pay off your student loans?“
So until such a time comes around in which true panic is necessary, I will continue my repetitive, seemingly endless journey towards the elusive “big-girl job.” I will continue typing factoids of my education and geographical preference into the same dreary formats, and creating new ways of transfiguring my previous employment as a Hooters girl. I will persist in harassing the receptionists at my desired places of employment, digging for names, titles and contact information. My family has continually given me excellent advice, including, “you only need one ‘yes.'” It’s facts like these that keep horripilation at bay.