The Graduate’s Guide to a Successful Finance Career

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Are you currently evaluating your options for a major concentration at college? Or have you been working on a finance degree and nearly ready for graduation? How can you get a head start on a career in finance? Before you graduate, there are a few things you should know so you can start off on the right foot and make the best choices for the long term stability of your career. Here are some ways to separate yourself from your competition and get ahead before graduation.

  1. Take an internship. The more experience you have on your resume, the better. Finance is a hands-on industry so it is important that you step away from the books and the classroom and into corporate environments as early as possible. Before you graduate, work with your advisor and internship program director to find the opportunities that suit you the best.
  2. Become an enrolled agent. Once you graduate you may want to take the test to become a CPA. But before that you would qualify for an exam to become an Enrolled Agent or EA. This is a test issued by the IRS each year and very easy to access. Becoming an enrolled agent will give you a competitive advantage over candidates who do not have tax experience.
  3. Do taxes. While you’re at it, a great way to boost your credentials before you graduate is to prepare taxes. You can get a job at most popular tax services without any previous experience. You could also do taxes for your friends and family just to get familiar with the process. Online tax services are easy to follow and can help you avoid problems as well. Get a head start for next tax season by making connections.
  4. Find a mentor. When determining the best path for your career, start to make connections in the industry. Talk your professors, leaders in the community, and make contacts on LinkedIn. Set up meetings with these professionals to get an idea about their career path and learn from their mistakes and successes. They can become a great resource in the future.
  5. Create your resume. Of course, before you start applying for jobs you need to have a solid resume to present to potential employers. Spend some time learning about the styles of resumes and what best suits your experience. Add as many accomplishments as possible to demonstrate your worth to an employer.
  6. Develop your personal brand. A resume isn’t enough for the 21st century job seeker. Now, in order to set yourself apart from your competition, you have to take it one step further and develop a personal brand. Create a website that can act as your portfolio. Add a blog. Join social media and create a consistent look between all of these sources.

Are you a recent graduate or graduating soon with a finance degree? VincentBenjmain can help you find a job in your industry so call us today!

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