Alaina Racioppi is a 23-year-old who graduated from Point Park University in 2011. An advertising and public relations major, she interned as a social media intern at a clothing boutique during school. After college, Racioppi landed a job as an associate copywriter last August but was laid off in February. Since then, Racioppi hasn’t been able to find a job in advertising.
Like many of her generation, she’s living under her parents’ roof and saddled with student loans. But through all the searching — she looks for jobs on LinkedIn, Mashable, The Creative Finder, Mediabistro and Craigslist, as well as the good old paper — and coming up short, Racioppi keeps a positive attitude because she knows what she wants to do.
“I want to work in advertising for the same reasons everyone else wants to; I love the challenge of the pitch, the fierce competition, the uncertainty of showing your work, the process of crafting an idea that will propel an entire campaign,” Racioppi said. “It’s an exciting industry, it’s tough and sometimes a total pain in the ass but so rewarding when someone genuinely appreciates what you have created.”
After spending four years in the collegiate bubble, newly minted college graduates are finding they’re in a kind of purgatory: a tough economy, few jobs and a competitive marketplace of young twenty-somethings trying to start down the career path. One of the lessons we learn as we work our way up the corporate ladder is that it’s always easier to get a job when you have a job. This little truth, however, is one of those Catch-22s for many recent college grads looking to land that elusive entry-level job in the digital world.