by Mahdis

In my college day, I envisioned many things for my future. I couldn’t figure out and outline clearly what I needed to do with my life.

So, as any confused teenager, I spent my college years passing up on really good opportunities. Opportunities that could have helped me get any job that I wanted after graduation. Luckily, now, after all my experiences led to me being an HR manager and I can share my experiences.

In this day and age, higher-learning institutions in Ethiopia are supplying hundreds of thousands of graduates from different departments to a bottleneck employment market.

According to 2018 data from the Central Statistical Agency (CSA) around 25.3% of the youth are unemployed in the urban population. And an overall increase in unemployment by 0.01% has been recorded in 2019. After the pandemic, that figure is inevitably much higher.

The upside of this challenge is that it opens their minds to new ideas and promotes an entrepreneurial spirit that could shape their future into an even better one. However, even though a great effort is done by the government from time to time, the majority will not resort to that as it needs money and human resources.

Know that times have changed and the times to be judged by grades alone are long gone.


So let’s talk about the other half of graduates still out there looking for jobs, and those still in college looking to land that perfect job which will have made the time and energy they spent in college worth it.

Know that times have changed and the times to be judged by grades alone are long gone. To become ‘the right one’ for any given job and employer know that employers are now looking for that ‘wow-factor’, as well as stellar grade reports. Grades can be obtained by anyone who works hard in school, so know that your high academic achievements may not be the only way to get what you want, even though they still remain one of the primary benchmarks on the judgment panel.

Then what is the solution? It’s simple, just three words: EXTRA-CURRICULAR ACTIVITIES.

  • Do you volunteer for any clubs in school or your neighbourhood?
  • Do you take different courses to expand your knowledge on different topics?
  • Have you prepared /are preparing the CV which guarantees you the job?


If your answer is no for all or any of these questions, then you may have to start thinking about fulfilling these criteria immediately. Different extracurricular activities will help your employers judge your dedication, sense of hard work or self-motivated nature. So it’s wise to engage in such activities whenever you get the chance.

Different courses that you may take on the side, can show that you are a serious academic and that will help convince anyone who’s looking for that quality in their company.

And, last but not least, prepare a CV that will be worth looking at and read through by your potential employers. The person in charge of hiring staff takes about 6 Seconds – 1 minute tops – to look at your credentials, so be sure to prioritize interesting and concise notes and contents in your CV. Refer to different websites for CV templates to create the perfect presentation for job application.

The second key in writing a CV is that you have to be truthful in every sentence. If you exaggerated a single line in your CV, the employer will figure it out eventually and you will lose credibility, support, connections even your job. Worst-case scenario, you may even be denied a good reference for future employers.

So work hard on some extras on the side. Sacrifice a little of your leisure time so you can get the job of your dreams or be a more successful entrepreneur, whichever path you decide to follow.

By Mahdis

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