Roompact’s “Quick Tips” series highlights ideas and suggestions you can put into your practice as either a professional staff or student staff member working in residence life and education. Click to read more from the series.
Entry level positions in residence life are plentiful. Upper level positions are not. As professionals progress in the field, many will need to look at positions outside of the gates of a college or university. When seeking out employment beyond the academy, here are three tips to help you navigate your way:
1. Think “adjacent,” rather than “outside.”
There are many positions that could be classified as “higher education adjacent” rather than outside of higher education. These are positions that may partner with higher education, or work within higher education, but do not involve working on a campus. This can include vendors, government agencies, and non-profit organizations and foundations. If you’re still passionate about higher education, there are options for you to still engage in similar work.
2. Focus on transferable skills.
The great thing about residence life roles is that they require you to utilize a myriad of skills which can be easily transferable to other industries. Residence life professionals may be drawn to positions in fields such as human resources, training and consulting, or property management. Before beginning your search, think about what skills you’ve gained and how to articulate these to potential employers. There are likely many that you could highlight.
3. Learn the norms of different industries.
Resume design, application protocols, and interview styles are all different in different industries. Higher education, in particular, tends to be different than the norm. As you seek out new job opportunities, learn about how other industries structure their hiring processes. You will need to change the way you approach the job search in order to get your foot int he door and stand out compared to other candidates. To learn more, do informational interviews, research on LinkedIn and the web, and ask for help.
Roompact is a small company, but we’re always looking for new talent. If you think we might be a good fit for you, let us know. Although we might not have an open position at the moment, we always keep track of folks for future opportunities.