As graduation nears, ECU helps students land first job

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GREENVILLE, N.C. (WNCT) – As graduates prepare to turn their tassels to mark the beginning of their adult life some are unsure of what their futures may hold.

It’s a day full of celebration with loved ones but it’s also the ending one chapter and beginning another.

The next step for many is finding that first job.

East Carolina University’s Career Services helps students with the task.

James Kuras is the Director of Career Services and said, “We’ve got about 5,000 graduates looking to transition out of East Carolina University.”

Kuras said the works starts early in a student’s academic career.

“We’ve been working with students through their academic program and certainly we’re seeing many of those in the last couple of weeks.”

Kuras said finding that first job is a full time job in itself.

“You’ve got to spend your four years thinking about ‘what kinds of internships should I get?’ Do I do a study abroad experience? How do I develop the skills employers are looking for,” said Kuras.

A goal for students is to showcase skills they learned in and out of the classroom.

“Employers tell us on a very firm basis the things they look for are things like teamwork, communication skills, problem solving, and our students have access to all of this to be able to practice to learn these skills if they take advantage,” said Kuras.

Part of career services mission is keeping jobs in the east.

Kuras said, “We can show that about 60 percent of the students want to stay in North Carolina and of that about half of them want to stay in eastern North Carolina.”

Don’t worry if you haven’t landed that first job. They offer services for alumni too.

Ariel Goodman is a career counselor and said, “If you’ve graduated and you’re still having a hard time and you’re not really sure how to find a job then contact us and we can put you on our calendar and we can have an hour counseling appointment to help you figure out what is it you’re doing or not doing that’s keeping you from getting where you need to be.”

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