1. Create a budget
Creating a budget is an important step for any graduate. A budget should be comprehensive and include categories such as housing, food, transportation costs, entertainment expenses, and savings. It should also account for the costs of job searches, moving expenses, and other essential items. The most effective budgets are realistic and flexible - they should take into account variable income as well as changes in lifestyle.
2. Update your Resume
A resume is a reflection of your skills and qualifications, so it's important to make sure that it is up-to-date and accurate. Revisit your skills, accomplishments, and experiences and make sure they are accurately represented on the document. Consider getting professional help if necessary - an updated resume will be vital for any job search you embark on after graduation.
3. Secure Housing
Graduates should have secured housing prior to commencement. This could include renting an apartment or finding a roommate situation, but it’s important to have something lined up before taking the jump into post-grad life. Make sure to look into the amenities of different housing options and the cost of living in each area.
4. Network & Look for Job Opportunities
Networking is an essential step in any job search, so make sure you take advantage of all available resources. Reach out to alumni networks, attend career fairs, and join professional organizations - these are all great ways to network with potential employers. It’s also important to have a good idea of what type of jobs you may be interested in before commencement - doing your research now will save time later!
5. Get Organized
From financial documents to contact information, getting organized will help ease the transition from college life to post-grad life. Create a filing system for important papers, update calendars and to-do lists, and take the time necessary to get settled.
6. Find Health Insurance Coverage
Graduates are no longer eligible for their parents’ health insurance once they turn 26 years old, so it’s important to find an appropriate health insurance plan before commencement. Research different coverage options and make sure you understand what each plan provides - this is essential for keeping up with your health needs after graduation.
7. Think about Investments & Retirement Savings Plans:
It’s never too early to start thinking about how you want to invest your money and save for retirement. Consider investing in stocks or mutual funds, saving through a tax-advantaged retirement plan like a Roth IRA, or exploring other types of investments.
8. Secure Transportation
For many graduates, transportation is an essential part of life after college. Whether you’re looking to buy a car or just need reliable public transportation, make sure you have the means to get around before commencement. Research different options and budget accordingly - having a form of transportation that works for your needs will be invaluable after graduation.
9. Get Your Documents in Order
Make sure all important documents are up-to-date and easily accessible before commencement day. This includes birth certificates, passports, driver’s licenses, Social Security cards, etc; having these documents readily available can save you the headache of having to find them later.