不过也有好消息，美国大学和雇主协会（National Association of Colleges and Employers，NACE）年度招聘经理调查的初步结果显示，2013年，雇主招聘的应届毕业生预计将比2012年增加13%。此外，你所学的专业也是你的优势所在。NACE执行董事玛丽琳•梅克斯称：“最有可能增加应届毕业生招聘的雇主所在的行业就包括化工与制药。”此外，她还补充道，拥有商学、计算机科学和各种工程学位的毕业生尤为抢手，而且雇主“纷纷瞄准大学校园，来为公司补充新鲜血液。”
这就涉及到你所说的校园招聘会。艾莉森•多伊尔称：“要想让招聘会发挥作用，第一件事就是一定要去参加。毕业班的学生通常非常繁忙，所以，他们会放弃参加校园招聘会。这其实是错误的做法。三年级学生也应该参加，因为通常会有许多公司通过类似活动招聘实习生。”多伊尔从事过多年人力资源高管工作，目前在About.com网站担任常驻职场专家，曾写过多本关于求职的书，最新的一本书名为《艾莉森•多伊尔的求职宝典》（ Alison Doyle's Job Search Guidebook）。
Dear Annie:I'll be getting a bachelor's degree in chemical engineering next spring, and I'm nervous about my chances of having a job offer in hand by then. With a lot of student loans to start paying off, I really have to be working right away. So I have two questions: First, my school is having a career fair next month, with recruiters from about 50 companies. A zillion other students have already signed up. Do you have any suggestions about how not to get lost in the crowd?
And second, I've had a couple of job interviews already, with two different companies where I think I'd really like to work. It's been about a month now, and I haven't heard anything back from either one. Does that mean they're not interested, or what? — Dixie Chick
Dear Dixie:Not to add to your anxiety, but you're right to be nervous about finding a job -- and smart to have started looking already. As you probably know, a much-publicized Associated Press report a few months ago said that more than half (54%) of 2011 college grads were either unemployed or underemployed, meaning stuck in jobs that don't require a bachelor's degree, and the class of 2012 doesn't seem to be faring much better. In September, unemployment among Americans ages 18 to 29 stood at 11.8%, well above the 7.8% average for the workforce as a whole.
On the bright side, however, employers expect to hire 13% more new grads in 2013 than in 2012, according to preliminary results from the National Association of Colleges and Employers' annual survey of hiring managers. Moreover, your choice of major gives you an advantage. "Those most likely to increase their hiring of new college graduates include employers in chemical and pharmaceutical manufacturing," notes Marilyn Mackes, executive director at NACE, adding that demand will be particularly strong for new grads with business, computer science, and all types of engineering degrees -- and that employers "are looking to college campuses to supply their hiring needs."
Which brings us to your career fair. "The No. 1 way to make a career fair work for you is to make sure you go," says Alison Doyle. "Often seniors are so busy that they skip it, which is a mistake. Juniors should go too, because companies often look for interns at these events." Doyle, a longtime human resources executive and now About.com's resident career expert, has written several books on job hunting, most recently Alison Doyle's Job Search Guidebook.
Even if the list of employers scheduled to attend doesn't wow you, she says, go anyway: "You never know who you'll meet there, and who might be helpful to you down the road. A job fair is also a great place to practice presenting yourself to hiring managers."
A few suggestions for making the most of the event:
1. Research the employers who interest you.Pay special attention to the careers section of each company's website, and think about which opportunities there would best fit your strengths and interests.
2. Prepare your "elevator speech."This is a 20-to-30-second sound bite that sums up your talents and skills. If you aren't sure what those are, think back to successes you've had so far -- including any leadership role you've played in an extracurricular activity (and yes, sports do count) -- and analyze what helped you achieve them.
3. Dress appropriately.If in doubt about what to wear, it's safer to be overdressed than clad too casually. Clothes don't make the man (or the woman), but wearing business attire will send a subtle message that you're taking this event seriously.
4. Be enthusiastic.If you're genuinely interested in an employer, end the conversation by saying so, and express your interest in exploring opportunities at the company. All else being equal, the most eager candidate often has an edge with employers, Doyle says.