In a few weeks, October college graduates will officially join the unemployed sector. Fresh, young, hopeful faces will make their appearance at HR offices, recruitment agencies, and job fairs and expos. New graduates will read their resumes over and over again, trying to recall campus activities and achievements that could make up for the free space under “Work Experience.” They will learn to read the newspaper for job ads; try to ignore their parents’ urgings to call Ninong who is the vice president of this and that; and master the art of copy-pasting addressees over cover letter templates.

Yesterday “Sweet Life” (hosted by Cong. Lucy Torres-Gomez and Iza Calzado on QTV 11) aired a segment on job hunting. They had actually shot part of it at our training center AHEADPro while I was in Palawan earlier this week. AHEADPro’s managing director Jane Santos-Guinto was asked to review a prospective October graduate’s paper resume and assess his chances of getting hired. Then she was shown the applicant’s video resume through the online job search engine vidres.net. On the video resume, the applicant was able to express his enthusiasm and confidently tell about his leadership and organizational skills. A great tool for applicants who want to set themselves apart from others!

Jobseekers today are so fortunate that technologies like video resume are readily available to them. They don’t have to spend on paper and ink because resume submissions are almost always done through the internet. With video-recorded resumes, they save on fares hand-delivering their applications to different companies. They don’t have to invest on too many business attires while they don’t have salaries yet. They can display their communication skills and personality on video and submit the file to the companies they want to apply for without leaving their homes. For employers like me, on the other hand, such technologies give us access to applications anytime and anywhere we are.

But while technology has changed the hiring process in many ways, some things remain the same. Each applicant has to compete with thousands of others in need of jobs. Each jobseeker has to wow his interviewer. Each work day for the successful new hire will be a mandate to prove his worth.

When I meet college students and fresh graduates these days, I wonder what kind of life they’re envisioning for themselves and if they’ve been equipped to attain their dream future. News of lowering student performance, declining English proficiency, deteriorating work ethics among young people often bother me as a parent and as an educational service provider. There seem to be more and more job openings but fewer and fewer qualifiers. At Ahead, we get tons of applications but only a handful show promise. Most applicants lack communication skills and score dismally low on Basic English tests. Some are inflexible while others are unassertive. There are opportunities, but why are many college grads not ready for them?

Such questions float in my head. What else can we do to help lead the youth to more promising careers? How do we move them to be motivated, drive them to be driven? How do we educate them for a sweet life of success?

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