When quarantine started, many were in the process of finding a new job. Due to COVID-19, that process has drastically changed since not a lot of companies are hiring but a lot of people are still in need of a job. It has left people feeling hopeless and frustrated because the uncertainty is too much. For that reason, I interviewed a recent graduate who was job hunting before quarantine began.
Lara: What is your name and how old are you?
Mateo: My name is Mateo Rosales and I am 21 years old.
L: What university did you graduate from? What was your major?
M: I graduated from Full Sail University, Class of 2019, with a Bachelor of Science in Film.
L: Where were you living when lockdown began?
M: I had been living in New York City for around eight months before we went on lockdown mid-March.
L: What was your job situation?
M: I completed a six month internship at a film sales agency late February and was interviewing for other potential positions when the outbreak forced all internships to be cancelled in the city.
L: How has the current global pandemic affected your job hunt?
M: Since the outbreak was declared a pandemic, most entry level jobs in my industry were terminated and the overall landscape of opportunities shifted. Most jobs had to become remote and the post listings have become scarce, while remaining very competitive. In the film industry, the uncertainty of the situation has led to delays and terminations, forcing many companies to downsize and change their operations entirely.
L: Experiencing this, what is something you would say you have learned in the past few months?
M: The past two months have taught me the value of patience and perseverance, something that most of us trying to break into the workforce were already aware of. However, the pandemic has offered me a new perspective on the value of time and how it can be used. I remain optimistic that the situation will continue to improve and that we will all be able to build from this shared experience.
L: What advice would you give other job seekers like yourself?
M: I have not secured a new job since lockdown started and that can sometimes feel overwhelming, but I need to remind myself that this is an unprecedented global crisis and the workforce is still trying to adapt to what (for a while) will be a new normal. To other job seekers, I would recommend they stay on the lookout for any remote positions that become available, but also to remain involved in whatever industry they work in. This situation has led to a lot of conversations and people are willing to help out those who reach out. I would also say that this time could be taken as an opportunity to continue building on skills and expanding your knowledge on your dream career.
As Mateo’s older sister, I have seen his entire job searching process from the very beginning. He graduated with amazing grades, landed a great internship, and was creating his own path in a very competitive industry. He was supposed to interview for another internship before all businesses shut down. Since then, he has remained very positive and continued to reach out to recruiters and hiring teams. I believe that is what everyone should be doing. Do not give up now! Even if it all seems crazy and hopeless, there are companies looking to hire new people who will bring renewed energy and new ideas. You might be one of those!
Hopefully, this interview will help you feel a little less alone. There are plenty of job seekers on the same boat. Everyone is trying to reach their goals and land that perfect job. Keep trying. Keep sending your resume. You never know what could happen.
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