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Here it is, spring semester. You’ve already aced the college classes that won’t appear on your transcript – subjects like “Fitting All Your Clothes into One Washing Machine” and “The Art of Sneaking Food from the Dining Hall.” And the truth is, answers to the biggest post-grad challenges often can’t be found in any course catalog. Read on for our list of college classes we wish we could have taken, and our tips for how you can ace them in the real world.
1. Principles of Unemployment
It’s tough to repeatedly admit that you’re still looking for a job. But as a recent grad, this is the number one question you’ll be asked by family, friends, and total strangers.
Make sure you have a quick-draw answer ready. Talk about a job that you’ve recently applied to or the industry you’re trying to break into. Most importantly, look people in the eye to tell the story of what you’re looking for.
The confidence with which you speak about your job hunt is powerful. And who knows? Maybe the person you’re talking to will have a connection to the opportunity you’ve been waiting for.
2. Studies in Side Hustles
Sure, college classes might only meet a few times a week, but the average night leaves you swamped with papers and studying. The post-grad world often allows for more free time to pursue your own projects. Fill it with newness rather than Netflix.
Create a website, find freelance opportunities, or start a blog about a topic you’ve always been interested in. Even if you don’t share your work yet, you can continue to build your portfolio for the future.
Looking for inspiration? Check out our best tips for launching your own passion projects and side hustle success stories from FindSpark members.
Photo courtesy of Bjarne Erick
3. Sociology of Friendlessness
Living in dorms and joining school clubs offer chances to easily meet people with common interests. It’s not until you leave college that you realize opportunities to make good friends were consistently laid out for you like a trail of breadcrumbs.
After graduation, you’re left with a stomach full of carbs and no one to commiserate with, especially if you’ve relocated to a new city. Still, losing the comfort of college friends offers a great opportunity to challenge yourself to be more outgoing.
Check out apps such as Meetup or Nearify to find local organized events uniting strangers with similar interests. And of course, if you’ve moved to NYC, come to FindSpark events to meet fellow job-seekers and young creative professionals.
4. Intro to Finance
Classes about economic policy and corporate finance don’t necessarily translate to budgeting a weekly paycheck. If you’re having trouble sticking with your planned expenses, try a spending tracker app such as Dollarbird, DailyCost, or your bank’s mobile app. It will probably surprise you where the money actually goes.
Hint: We might all be millionaires if it weren’t for lattes.
5. Millennial Psych 101
At your first post-college job, chances are you’ll be one of the youngest people in the office. This position offers great opportunities to bring a fresh perspective and prove yourself. But it’s important not to succumb to the stereotypes of the millennial generation.
Don’t always be swallowed in your phone in the elevator or minimizing online shopping windows when your boss walks by. Try to avoid constantly telling stories about college or internships at other companies. And for the first few weeks, it’s better to listen rather than overshare your experiences. You’ll prove your maturity with your work ethic in the long run.
6. Advanced Social Media: Branding Yourself
In college, social media is the best way to procrastinate on that midterm study guide or upcoming research paper. But after graduation, you can start to use it as a tool rather than a distraction.
Clean up your current social media footprint so that your name is on the Internet connected to content other than football tailgate selfies. Post updates on LinkedIn, research your favorite companies on Glassdoor, or build your personal website. And definitely check out our insider tips for using Twitter to land your next job. The ever-changing world of social media offers unlimited opportunities for growing your professional connections.
Now that you’ve read our list of classes for navigating the post-grad world, it’s your turn: What’s a subject you wish you could have taken in college? Let us know in the comments!