Maintaining a high GPA is typically a goal for students during college, however when it comes to finding jobs and internships, employers also look for candidates with extracurricular involvement.
Employers in this market look to hire those who demonstrate participation in leadership roles, community service and internship experience on their resumes, Associate Director of the Career Center Andrea Garrido said.
When discussing Seton Hall students who exhibit a strong involvement on and off campus, Garrido said, “They are the stars, and they will absolutely be more apt to be receiving a position or interview before someone with just GPA and no involvement.”
Although academics are considered in life after Seton Hall, it is additionally important to display other qualities to employers, such as knowledge of your field through an internship, Garrido said.
The industry a student is in also sets the stage of what is important to employers, Garrido said. A science student does most of their work in labs so their GPA would reflect their performance. On the other hand, a theatre student’s involvement in plays and organizations would demonstrate more than what their coursework does.
Many students seem to have the notion their GPA may be negatively affected by getting involved. For example, Lauren Papia said her GPA has suffered in the past due to her activities on campus.
Garrido said students may not realize a bit lower GPA is acceptable to employers if they demonstrate an involvement in multiple organizations.
“I personally think that a student with a 3.0 and involved in various organizations would have the better chance because it shows that they can work well with others, and with a diverse group of people,” Papia said.
Seton Hall’s cost also encourages students to strive for a higher GPA in order for them to hold onto scholarships and grants, Garrido said.
“Many students and parents have taken out significant loans to attend Seton Hall,” student Daniel Zadrozny said. “These individuals realize that they must focus to make their investment worthwhile.”
Garrido said the importance of getting involved during a student’s undergraduate years would increase their chances of getting a job after graduation. Companies will choose resumes that stand out and show variety in an individual.
“There are going to be some (companies) that won’t even look at them if they aren’t involved,” Garrido stated.
Students who visit The Career Center tend be those who are already involved on and off campus, Garrido said. However, she said just because a student is not involved now does not mean they cannot move forward and improve their resumes.
Nicole Bitette can be reached at email@example.com.