How to Apply your Classroom Skills on the First Day Back on the Job

First day of workRising to Meet a New Challenge

The transition back to full-time employment from student life can be daunting, and many people wonder if they will be able to cope to life back in the “real world”. After all, the classroom skills needed to succeed in college are very different from those needed for a successful career, right? Actually, that isn’t true. The skills that most employers look for are very much a part of the skill set that helped you succeed in school. Consider a recent Colorado Christian University CAGS blog post; Top Skills Employers are Looking For. The skills identified by the author as valued by today’s employers translate directly into the skills used by successful students. And those skills will be with you on your very first day of work.

Skills Employers Value

Can college really prepare you for that first day back on the job? Let’s look at some of the skills listed in the CAGS blog and consider them one by one.

  • Strong communication skills – In college, you were required to present the material you learned in a variety of ways. Preparing papers, reports and presentations taught you to communicate effectively. Those skills will allow you to communicate clearly with your boss and your coworkers as you start your new career.
  • Computer literacy – At today’s colleges and universities, computers are essential learning tools, and you probably used them daily. They came into play during lectures for note taking, when you were conducting research and even when doing lab work. You will take those skills with you straight into the workplace.
  • Interpersonal skills – Collaboration is required in many college classes. You may have had a lab partner, been part of a study group or had to work with other students on a special project. The interpersonal skills you learned while navigating those situations will help you do the same when you must work with others at your new job.
  • Flexibility - College life is the definition of flexibility. Your course work probably changed every semester; your class hours and demands daily. The resiliency you learned balancing college classes will make you a flexible employee.

Your First Day Back at Work

If you’re a recent college graduate — or even if you’ve taken a job while you continue your education — you can rest assured that your first day of work will go smoothly. All the skills you worked so hard to master while in school are still with you and make you uniquely qualified to meet the demands of any new job.

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