Winter Break Job Search Checklist

Posted: December 11, 2019

For most people, Winter Break is a time to forget all about their studies and get some much needed— and deserved— rest and relaxation. While Winter Break should be used as a time to recharge for the spring semester, there are some things you can do to optimize your search for an internship, co-op, or full-time job. Engineering Career Services has compiled a simple checklist of activities you can do during Winter Break to kick start your spring search and reduce your stress during the semester.

1. Update your resume.

Before you can apply to any positions, it’s important that your resume reflects all of the new projects, roles, and opportunities you completed over the fall semester. Even if your projects or jobs are ongoing, be sure to update it with your recent contributions. A strong resume is a current resume! If you need help updating your document, use ECS templates, resources, and/ or meet with an Advisor.

2. Build an editable cover letter template.

Just as a strong and updated resume is necessary for success, the same is true for a cover letter. Cover letters are often the most difficult part of the application process for candidates, so use your extra time over break to build a template and take some stress off of the process. Utilize our resources on Handshake and you’ll soon have a draft that you can easily update and tailor for your position and company of interest when applying.

3. Make at least 4 new connections.

It’s common during Winter Break for students to meet new people: family, friends, neighbors, etc. Networking never stops, and Winter Break is a great time to flex those skills and grow your professional network. Use your conversations with family and friends to learn about their careers and tell them about your interests. Be open to finding new connections and there’s no telling who you might meet that could lead to your next professional opportunity!

4. Apply to at least five 5 relevant postings.

This can be internships, co-ops, grants, research positions, on campus jobs, anything! The more opportunities you can apply to, even over Winter Break, the better chance you’ll have once spring semester begins. ECS will be open over break, so we’re here to offer support.

5. Plan your spring semester.

Get out your calendar and start saving the date for upcoming events. Begin looking into participating companies at the SWE Career Fair, Intern Week programs, and ECS’ Spring Job Shadow; all of which will give you time with employers to show off who you are and the skills you bring. Keep checking ECS’ website and Handshake for events and opportunities with employers throughout the semester.

“It takes as much energy to wish as it does to plan.” – Eleanor Roosevelt