“My name is Jessica and I am a recent York University graduate…”
Since June 2012 I have become strangely familiar with writing that line, I know it off by heart and where exactly it should be place within one of the hundreds of cover letters I have written. I graduated with a BA in English Literature in October 2012 and of every single job posting I applied for, full-time, part-time and even internships, the only job I could successfully land is close to home; and for my father.
I am grateful to have this business to fall-back on, but there’s not much writing involved in filing and window-quotation preparation. The only problem is, University did not prepare me for the full-time job that is LOOKING for a full-time job. Everyone I’ve spoken to has said the same thing, that they have been unsuccessful in finding something substantial in the field that they have studied. I, however, have located many jobs in my field, but lack the experience to actually receive the job. I am fully aware that an employer cannot just randomly place a former-student in a job that she knows nothing about, but what happened to the employers who cared enough about their workers to offer some-sort of training. It’s not rocket science here, people, it’s an assistant to the Editor or Internship at a magazine - we’re not constructing a space shuttle to send cats in.
Literally, and I mean LITERALLY, every posting for an internship I have looked a specifically states, “previous experience is necessary” or “prior experience is essential”, and while I agree with weeding out the weak from the bunch, how on earth is anyone supposed to get any experience around here if we’re not getting hired? Why is it easier to smuggle immigrants into this country than it is to find a job?
When applying for a job, I think the qualifications listed should include, but not be limited to:
1. The blood of a unicorn
2. A dragon’s tail
3. Your first born child
These points would make the whole process a lot clearer since at least we would know to travel to Narnia to actually have a shot at getting the job. The way it seems now, it’s a catch 22 and we all might as well just frame our degrees on the wall and check the nearest McDonald’s for a job.