Danville, VA - Shawn Patterson is a recent graduate in career limbo, and he has plenty of company.
"You have to fill out the application, have a resume, have a cover letter, then you have to wait. I think waiting is the toughest part," Patterson said.
According to a study by consulting firm Accenture, roughly 11% of 2011 and 2012 graduates surveyed are unemployed, and 41% set aside their degrees to find low skilled jobs just to pay the bills.
"My husband is actually working at Sears in receiving... which is not a bad job, but he went here for Aviation. It's very sad that he can't do what he loves," said graduating senior Sierra Braxton.
Many graduates say they need more training in order to pursue their dream jobs.
Career Services Director Patrina Carter is there to help.
"No one likes to be told 'No', but when they're told 'No', I tell them, you are that much closer to a 'Yes'," Carter said.
Averett offers students internship and career resources - even after graduation.
Carter says networking can be the fastest way to break into your career.
"Don't stay home, don't lock yourself away. Let everyone know you're looking for work," Carter said. "No matter what job you're in, go to work aspiring for the job that you want to be in, because you could be waiting on a customer who could be your next boss. So, always put your best foot forward."