There are a lot of questions out there right now due to the uncertainty surrounding COVID-19. We have done our best to address many of those questions below. Have a question that has not been addressed? Please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Can I list a cancelled job or internship on my résumé or CV?
Absolutely list a cancelled job or internship on your résumé or CV. It is a signal to a future employer that you were viewed as a great fit for a role within a company and that you did well in the interview process leading up to obtaining the offer. You will want to list the cancelled job or internship in a format that is consistent with how you are noting your other experiences.
Marketing Intern, Name of Company, Rochester, NY May 2020 – August 2020
- Cancelled due to Covid-19
Name of Company, Web Development Department, Boston, MA May 2020 – Cancelled due to Covid-19
Are all the opportunities on Handshake and other third-party websites (e.g., Indeed, LinkedIn) still available?
We continue to work closely with our employer partners to encourage them to post only currently active jobs and internships. Was the position added to Handshake recently? If so, the employer is making a strong statement that they are hiring. However, if the position was added to Handshake prior to the emergence of the coronavirus, we cannot be 100% certain the role is still available. The same can be said for third party job search websites as well. Job posting aggregators like Indeed, Glassdoor, Dice and LinkedIn do their best to post available job opportunities but in this current environment things change rapidly.
As a result, just as you would research companies to prepare your résumé and cover letter, it might be a good idea to research the job on the company website. If you are unable to find the job posting in the company’s career site it has probably been closed.
Please remember, even during these uncertain times, employers will continue to hire. It may take a little longer and require more research but the opportunities are there. If you need help developing your job search strategy, please schedule an appointment with a Career Coach at the Center for Career Development (https://uconn.joinhandshake.com/login).
I have a post-graduation or summer job secured. Should I be reaching out to the company about the status of my position or should I wait for them to reach out?
Don’t wait! By reaching out to the company you are demonstrating multiple competencies. You are showing that you are aware the arrangement you have with them might be changing and you are taking the initiative to manage your career. Just think of all the responsibilities that employers are juggling right now, and while your post-graduation or summer job is on the top of your list, employers are navigating this ever-changing situation for the first time. The top of their list might include focusing on their current employees and customers.
In reaching out you can also be prepared to learn if and how the employer is still going to bring you on board. You can ask about any changes with that timeline and offer how you are available to engage remotely. While some work and roles are not conducive to remote work, you might find that the employer has a plan. If the employer indicates that they don’t know enough to be able to give you a timeline or assurance that your job awaits you, ask if it is okay to check back with them in a month. They might then share that they will actually follow-up with you by a specific date.
Lastly, while perhaps not ideal, you can continue to network and explore other job opportunities. While one employer might not be able to shift a role to remote work, another may. Step back and reflect on the aspects of this situation that you can control and those which you can’t. You can always be networking and you can always be looking for other future work.
What if my offer is withdrawn?
Employers are rapidly adjusting to the realities of the COVID-19 pandemic and are having to make difficult decisions about their summer internship programs and new hire on-boarding. If remote work is not possible, in some cases, hiring may be paused rather than completely canceled. In your response to a rescinded offer, express your continued interest in working with the organization and ask if you would be considered for a future opportunity. In the meantime, resume your search, identify new positions you wish to pursue, and continue to submit applications. Even if the hiring timeline is slower than usual, you may still be a potential hire for other organizations. Stay active in the process. Continue to network online through LinkedIn and conduct informational interviews on Husky Mentor Network. You could also use this time to work on your professional skill development through online training and classes to enhance your resume. Remember, we are here to support you. We encourage you to make a virtual or phone appointment with a career consultant for additional guidance during this unprecedented time.
What can I do to be productive?Staying proactive and positive can go a long way to reducing stress and can set you up to be ahead of the game when the dust settles. Click here to view information that will help you stay active and productive during this time.
I need to renege my offer due to COVID-19 impacts. What effects will this have on my ability to apply to additional jobs within the company in the future?
- Your health and safety are of the utmost importance. We are finding that employers understand that this is an unprecedented time. Being proactive and simply stating a professional reason (“unfortunately, due to the effects of COVID-19, I am no longer able to accept employment at X”) will go a long way. Add that you would love to stay in touch and directly ask if you’re eligible to apply in the future. Be sure to thank them for their time in the interview process. Also, connect with the hiring manager and/or the HR rep on LinkedIn, thanking them again for their time and understanding, and express your continued enthusiasm about the organization and interest to stay in touch.
My employer wants me to work virtually this summer, but [insert barrier here].
- Barriers to working virtually this summer are numerous: not having any or reliable internet access, not having a computer or other technological resources, not having an appropriate space to work, not wanting to show your physical space on a video call, not having child or elder care, sharing resources with another household member, being in an disparately different time zone, and more. Whatever the barrier you’re experiencing, reach out to your employer as soon as possible, briefly explain the situation, and propose some possible solutions. Convey enthusiasm and flexibility in your response. Some barriers have practical solutions, such as taking advantage of providers currently offering free internet service, calling into meetings with audio only, or asking for more flexible work hours. Other barriers may be more difficult and require creative solutions. For example, maybe there’s a different project you can work on that’s a better fit for your current situation. If you and your employer cannot come up with a workable solution and you are unable to continue working, let them know that you’d like to stay in touch, hope to work together in the future, and would be interested if a position or project became available that might be a better fit.
How can I remain connected with people in my industry during this time?
- LinkedIn is a great way to stay connected. Now might be the time to go beyond simply creating your free profile. By joining groups and following companies, your news feed will be richer, and you will be able to expand your existing network. Joining groups is a great way to demonstrate your interest in an industry and following companies will help expose you to potential job openings. By engaging in conversation around industry topics and sharing posts and insights, you can increase your knowledge about industry trends and strengthen your personal brand at the same time.
I’ve accepted a job post-graduation and want to reach out to my employer. What messaging should I use to reach out regarding the company and COVID-19?
- If you haven’t yet heard from your employer, don’t hesitate to reach out. Start by doing some research on your own to see if the company has made any announcements on their website or social media channels about how their operations have been impacted by COVID-19. Once you have done your research, send a well-written and thoughtful email to the person who interviewed you or the person who made you the job offer. Mention what you found through your own research (e.g., “I saw that the company posted about all employees working remotely until further notice on Twitter”) as well as the specific questions you are hoping they can answer (e.g., impacts on your start date, changes to the onboarding and training plans, options to start working remotely, initial projects you can work on, etc.). You can also share any changes to your own circumstances that may impact your employment (e.g., having more free time now and possibly the ability to start working earlier, not being able to relocate or travel as anticipated, etc.). If you share any changes that could be perceived as challenges or barriers, you should also suggest some possible solutions to overcome them. Most importantly, be sure to express enthusiasm about the company and the position even amidst the uncertainty you are facing. It is important to remember that the hiring manager you are working with is also facing a great deal of uncertainty, and hearing that you are still certain in your choice to accept their offer can go a long way.
What if my interview gets cancelled?
- If your interview gets cancelled, do not panic. Reach out to the recruiter to see why the interview was cancelled and if there is an opportunity to reschedule. If you are not able to reach the recruiter, graciously follow up with a note to restate your interest in the company and position. If you cannot reschedule the interview, keep your job search going. Handshake is continually being updated with available jobs. There are good opportunities out there for you!
Are there sites to find remote internships?
- Many companies and organizations are still looking to host interns this summer in a virtual format. You can find these opportunities using sites such as Handshake and Indeed by adding the keywords “remote” or “virtual” to your searches. You may also consider a micro-internship experience. Additionally, employers may not have updated their internships to include “remote” or “virtual” in their postings. If there is a position that you’re interested in, you can reach out to the recruiter or hiring manager directly to see if a virtual experience is available.
What if I don’t have an internship this summer, what else can I do to gain experience?
•Find a part-time job that is related to your career of interest, even peripherally. If your interest is in marketing, consider working in any industry that has customer service aspects, in person or virtually. Learning about your customer base and developing excellent oral communication skills are an asset in that field. Here are two links for short term project-based or gig economy work sites that might lend themselves to your skill set. There are others too and be sure to review any business you find before committing to one: https://gigworker.com, https://www.dollarsprout.com/gig-economy-jobs.
•Design you own Independent Project. Perhaps you have an amazing idea and want to develop a prototype. Or you like statistics and analysis and want to research a unique segment of your career interest. Perhaps you can develop a blog or website where you can highlight key findings in your field. Whatever you decide to do, do it thoroughly and in a way that it showcases your strengths. Depending on what you do, you may discover you can put this on your résumé too.
•Conduct job shadows/networking chats. Whether virtually or ideally in person, you can connect to alumni or others in the field to learn and engage. Once you have a few, this too can go on your résumé. You will want to be quite intentional in your efforts and maximize their time. Get started with these ideas: https://career.uconn.edu/network-with-professionals/. Use LinkedIn and the Husky Mentor Network to find receptive alumni. Letting everyone in your sphere know you are looking for practical experience this summer in a certain career field will widen the field for you.
•Volunteer. Numerous agencies, organizations, and people need help every day. Research places like www.volunteermatch.org, religious entities, social service agencies, etc that might need a skill set you already have. You can approach them one of two ways: inquire how can I be best use to you/what are your needs OR I have a skill set and would like to offer them to you. Either approach can yield results if your frame your inquiry in a receptive manner.
Ultimately, being active and proactive is more important than getting an internship in summer 2020. When you are ready to have your résumé, cover letter or LinkedIn profile reviewed, please reach out to the UConn Career Coaches for support, guidance, and encouragement through this process. Schedule an appointment in Handshake to get started.
How can I find out if an employer has a hiring freeze?
- You can find many web sites and “real time” listings of companies with hiring freezes. But in this environment things are changing so quickly many of these sites are relying on hearsay or an individual’s experience, so beware of any “data” you see. You can always search the web for NEWS on a company – many are required by law to publicly announce hiring freezes or lay-offs (which don’t always affect hiring, as hard as that is to believe). Search for a press release on a hiring freeze. It’s always best to apply for a position and if possible, reach out a week or so afterward to the contact in Handshake (if there’s one listed), or someone in the HR department. It shows initiative and interest in the company and in the career. Recruiters appreciate that and understand things are unsettling for all of us.
I’m an international student graduating in May and my employer rescinded my job offer. I’m worried about my status. What should I do?
This is a question that is best answered by one of the advisers at International Student and Scholar Services (ISSS). An adviser would speak with you about accruing unemployment days. If you are on OPT or STEM OPT you can have 90 – 150 days of unemployment during your authorization period.
Additionally, you have the potential of working remotely under the current Covid-19 circumstances. If you are on CPT and your offer is rescinded, then the CPT authorization can be cancelled.
For more information, go to https://isss.uconn.edu/student-employment and arrange to speak with one of the ISSS advisers.
Can I list a cancelled conference or poster presentation on my résumé or CV?
Absolutely include cancelled conference presentations or poster sessions on your résumé or CV. Use the citation format that is consistent with the other presentations that you have delivered, or if this is your first one use the citation format that is consistent with your field of study. Add “Cancelled due to Covid-19” at the end of the citation.
If you have many presentations that were cancelled, you might consider using a subheading within your presentations section called Cancelled Due to Covid-19 and then list those presentations under that subheading in the citation format consistent with your field of study.
Listing the cancelled presentation allows a future employer to see that your contributions are valued within your field.