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Old 07-25-2009, 11:53 AM
 
52 posts, read 190,093 times
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I am under the impression that Entry-Level is a misnomer. I can appreciate companies wanting/needing people who can just jump right in and starting working (and making money for the company) but with so much focus on hiring "senior" employees, how are the new graduates expected to get on a decent career track especially if they did not have the opportunity for internships while still in school? I understand the recession right now but I think companies still leave a lot of good talent on the table by not taking more interest in truly entry-level candidates. The "seniors" will retire...then what? Sure, companies want the most for their money (who doesn't?) It usually takes money to make money and that includes training entry-level workers who just finished school and who are ready to put their newly-acquired knowledge and skills to work.
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Old 07-25-2009, 12:02 PM
 
26,589 posts, read 58,154,025 times
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After the seniors retire there are a whole slew of mid-level candidates behind them.

The problem is that most new grads have knowledge but not skills. Knowledge is fine, but in reality it's not practical. Most companies don't want to hire someone who can't produce results from the start. These days "entry level" often means "with a couple years experience." How to get a job? It depends on what your degree is in.
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Old 07-25-2009, 12:11 PM
 
52 posts, read 190,093 times
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Mine is mechanical engineering. I never had the internship opportunities while in school. I've had to settle for positions typically held by someone with an associate's degree but now am unemployed. I held engineering positions for several years; however in the very narrow field of truss design. I would like to get into mechanical engineering, virtually any specialty within the discipline but cannot seem to find that entry-level opportunity to get in the door.
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Old 07-25-2009, 12:20 PM
 
52 posts, read 190,093 times
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If is the skills that are the limiting factor, I think engineering schools should do a better job of preparing students for the real working world. Instead of stuffing a design project or two into the last couple of years, why not do more so that even those students who could not participate in internships, for whatever reason, could still have something to market themselves with to prove real world skills?
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Old 07-25-2009, 12:35 PM
 
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I have to admit I know nothing about engineering, so I could be way off base here. but I would think that some of the skills you used in truss design could be applied to mechanical engineering, and you need to highlight those on your resume. Good luck to you.
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Old 07-25-2009, 12:59 PM
 
256 posts, read 848,564 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Meng2 View Post
Mine is mechanical engineering. I never had the internship opportunities while in school. I've had to settle for positions typically held by someone with an associate's degree but now am unemployed. I held engineering positions for several years; however in the very narrow field of truss design. I would like to get into mechanical engineering, virtually any specialty within the discipline but cannot seem to find that entry-level opportunity to get in the door.

Well I'd think with an engineering degree, you'd at least have significant projects you completed that you can use in your resume. If you've been using a chronological resume maybe switch to a functional resume, and list in great detail what you accomplished in school. Don't just list the course name, but explain what you did and employers can see how that would relate to their business needs.
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Old 07-25-2009, 01:49 PM
 
6,764 posts, read 20,873,642 times
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If I owned a business, I would not have a problem with new people/new grads as long as they had basic business skills. That means they know how to dress (neat and clean), do not use foul language, want to learn as well as take direction without a sulky face when told what to do, and they have some idea of how to answer phones, do computer work and so on.

You can learn skills on the job but if you don't listen you will not get very far. If your boss says "Say this or that" when you answer the phone, without the gum in your mouth, and stop dressing like a freshman, do it.

I think the problem comes if you get grads (either high school or college) who expect to goof off, bring their drama to the office and think that the world owes them big money and no they don't have to do what you say. People don't want the hassle.

When you join the workforce, at 18, 22, 34, or whatever, you should know how to behave and put your job before partying and having fun. I think many people are afraid younger/newbies are going to put the job last.

My advice to kids 18 starting college is to do some sort of summer work to get experience so when you graduate you have 'something on the resume.' I worked every summer break in an office (okay, my dad got me in). I worked in purchasing or accounting or engineering..I admit was a kid who didn't take a lot of it seriously but I was able to put it on my resume.

Was it a drag getting up at 6 am every summer day? Hell, yeah, but I needed the $ for college and I learn the real world is out there.

So yeah, you need to think at 16, 17, 18 to do SOMETHING besides slacking...work at the local library, volunteer somewhere...do something to get experience.
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Old 07-25-2009, 02:03 PM
 
173 posts, read 940,670 times
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Many if not most of the part-time jobs normally earmarked for college students are now going to experienced or senior people. I know this has been happening at least for the last 2 years.
I don't fault an employer that can get a seasoned and/or experienced person at an entry level pay rate. It just comes down to supply and demand.

I do know a chemical engineer that networked with one of her engineering professors only to find that they have greatly dumbed down the curriculum she had to master 20 years ago.
Unfortunately, she did very little in the chemical engineering field and even with her MBA can't find a job and she's been out for slightly over 1 year.
Detroit has flooded the market with IE's and ME's, their is a slight demand for EE's in certain specialized areas.
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Old 07-25-2009, 02:13 PM
 
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Chemical engineering can sometimes translate to the pharmaceutical industry, something for a chemical engineer to look into.
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Old 07-25-2009, 02:18 PM
 
Location: Western Washington
11,883 posts, read 10,671,395 times
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The entry level problem has existed for years. It is probably worse now due to the bad economy, but all employers SAY that they want somebody with experience. If they get somebody with experience, then who can fault them for asking?

But if nobody with experience applys, employers will go to the next tier of applicants, and start to interview those with education, or some vaguely relevant part time experience, or those who just wrote a good cover letter.

The bottom line is you need to apply to a bunch of places, put as much effort as possible into cover letters and interview prep, and sooner or later something will come through.
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