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Cornell University

Finding Positions

In today's continuously changing and competitive job market, no single job-search strategy can guarantee success. The most effective method for finding a job will also be influenced by the career field you wish to enter. Some employers find that on-campus recruiting is a good way to hire talent well in advance of when the candidate will report to work, while others hire to fill specific positions "just-in-time" or as openings occur.

The effectiveness of your search will be influenced by how much time you invest and how many different strategies and resources you use. A search for a full-time job takes an average of two to six months of organized effort. Speak with an advisor in Career Services to develop a job-search plan that will work for you.


Think of your job search as a research project. You need to understand your options by learning about employers, job openings, credentials being sought, etc., before you can focus on a particular employer or job and prepare your targeted application materials.

Our Resource Library links you to extensive resources to help you conduct this research. The Career Library in 103 Barnes Hall has general and international job bulletins, information on internships, volunteer opportunities, and career exploration possibilities. In conjunction with the Johnson's Career Management Office we maintain a subscription to Career Insider (powered by Vault) to help with your career research. Also visit other libraries at Cornell. The Johnson Library, for instance, has access to many powerful employer databases. Mergent Intellect and CareerSearch are two of our favorites.

Preparing Credentials

Once you have set career goals and researched employers, you are ready to market yourself through resumes and cover letters. You will probably need to prepare multiple versions of your resume and cover letter to target employers' needs very specifically. Refer to information in the Resumes and Interview Prep section for assistance with your materials.

Your goal is to prepare well-constructed resumes and job-search correspondence, to attract an employer's interest in you so that you are invited for an interview.