Dec 19th, 2020, 05:40 PM

Job Hunting in Covid: Tips and Resources from the AUP Career Center

By Clara Appia
Combes Student Life Center lobby. Image Credit: AUP
Students and alumni can benefit from the resources available in the AUP Career center as they hunt for jobs and internships into 2021.

The ongoing COVID-19 pandemic has sent waves of anxiety across college campuses as students reexamine their future plans after graduation. What does that mean for AUP students entering the real world? University career centers generally provide guidance to all levels, undergraduates through alumni, on navigating these changes. Students have questions — including what the current hiring trends are, which companies are still reaching out to post positions on the AUP jobs board, tips about alumni connections or mentorship opportunities and advice about internship leads — and everything is on the table.

The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported the unemployment rate hovering around 6.7 percent in its jobs report released December 4. The French outlook is even less rosy, as the unemployment rate rose to 9.0 percent in the third quarter from 7.1 percent in the second quarter. With the new lockdown measures implemented in November, the estimated loss of economic output and activity for October (-4 percent) declined even further in November (-12 percent).

In such a tough job market, students need to be aware of what is driving industry changes and must be the most compelling version of themselves, explained AUP Director of Career Advising Danielle Savage. Now is the moment to take a closer look at what you bring to the table, how you can best relate to your target sector and what contributions you’d like to make. Examine your strengths and play to them to determine your unique value proposition, Savage remarked as part of an hour-long session aimed at current job hunters on December 2.

The best place to start is with the numerous resources available on the AUP Career Center Resource website page. With support in the office from Savage, Director of the Center for Academic Advising, Careers, and Experiential Learning (ACE) Darcee Caron, Academic and Career Advisor Lilyana Yankova and Internship Program Manager Isabella Archer, students have plenty of support as they search for employment and educational opportunities.

Image Credit: Unsplash/Andrew Neel

AUP students have a lot to draw from as they list their strengths and competencies. With an abundance of international experience, transferable skills, intellectual curiosity and a definite knack for handling adversity, the student body already has an attractive profile for a potential employer.

International experience demonstrates competencies such as adaptability and cross-cultural communication skills. It is being able to leverage these experiences and frame them in meaningful ways that can give job-seekers a leg-up over the competition.

If you have this coupled with motivation and a willingness to learn, try to “drill down and think about what's important to you and your values — which industries and organizations align with what you know about yourself?” explained Savage. 
“This is a disruptive time, so focus on what needs fixing. There will be profound shifts in how companies do business.” Savage encourages students to stay on top of trends as they search for jobs and internships.

Job hunting websites like Welcome to the Jungle and Station F are excellent resources for those seeking positions in the startup scene. The sector is currently recruiting, and you can begin your research by visiting their respective websites:

Welcome to the Jungle. Image Credit: AUP Jobs Board 
Station F. Image Credit: AUP Jobs Board

The AUP Job and Internship Database is a logical place to check out which companies and organizations are looking to recruit AUP talent right now. The most important thing you can do is your research. "If they’re hiring for one English-speaking position, they’re likely hiring for others in different departments," recommended Savage. Background research can include reading business and economic journalism outlets. Find out what the news is saying about your industry, and if companies are moving to new markets. Go beyond what a company says about themselves on LinkedIn and official job postings.

Many students may be wondering who is hiring and how to position themselves. LinkedIn is the industry-standard resource for everyone at any stage of their career. A simple hashtag search for terms like #nowhiring and #jobopportunity, or #onrecrute for French positions, can quickly create a list of posts advertising open positions. Depending on the sector, there is also hiring activity of Facebook, Instagram and Twitter. When looking at a company's page, you can discover who previously held the position and what qualifications and experience they had before being hired. Getting an in-depth understanding of the company hiring can help job seekers better inform themselves at every step of the process. From requesting and preparing for informational interviews with key stakeholders at the company to the final rounds with HR and your potential manager, being strategic can pay massive dividends. By reaching out, you are building your professional network, a smart move that will benefit you in your career.

Ready to Start Your Search?

AUP alumni currently employed in your field of interest are an invaluable resource. COVID-19 has transformed the modern workplace and changed the way people conceptualize a work-life balance. A closer look by the AUP Career Center uncovered that many jobs have moved to remote or partly remote work. 

“There’s no need to settle, but be strategic in how you approach opportunities,” said Savage. In such a tough market, job seekers need to be flexible and tuned in to the current hiring trends. For some, being strategically-minded may mean considering a “bridge job” to gain experience that will be useful in your target sector later on.

Some current industries hiring (including remote work) are:

  • Online Education or Administration
  • Translation
  • Project Managing
  • Communications
  • Social Work
  • Tech, including database analysis, UX/UI, web developing, operations, graphic designing and more 
  • Nontechnical industries: HR/admin, marketing, social media management, content creation, business development, sales and more

Appointments in the ACE Center are available for students of all levels and alumni, and the Career and Internship team runs a program of workshops and events throughout the academic year. They also publish the Global Talent Portal to promote students seeking internships. Browse AUP Engage to see what's on (login required).


Find important Career Center information and resources here. Searching for an internship? Create a Global Talent Portal profile. 

Alumni and Employers: 

Looking for an intern? A la recherche d’un stagiaire? : Global Talent Portal

For updates on hiring AUP students and alumni subscribe to the mailing list. Pour en savoir plus sur l'embauche d'étudiants et d'anciens élèves de l'AUP, abonnez-vous à notre liste de diffusion.