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I'm an undergraduate student at an overseas campus of a university that's not based where I am. If everything went well, I'd graduate around this august and when contacted by a recruiter, I'd asked them to wait, since I wanted to finish school.

Unfortunately due to some timetabling issues, the final modules that I needed to complete don't seem to be available this term. I've asked my local campus admin team if there's any options to do the modules sooner, perhaps at the main campus, or as an external student.

I'm wondering, should I not have any alternatives if I should e mail the recruiter, mention what's happening and get the interview process started while waiting for next term. While this certainly isn't something I had foreseen. This would let me use these 4 months productively, and I'd need to tell the possible prospective employer of the delay anyway. What should I be doing, to look as professional as possible, while trying to sort out what's obviously a boondoggle?

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First, realize you care about this far more than the recruiter does. You're just another potential employee to them. This situation is a BIG DEAL to you (it's your life afterall, your timeline which got messed up, your schooling) but it's really not to them. They might not even remember you, depending on how much you communicated.

They want to know when you are available to work because their job is to hire people.

should I not have any alternatives if I should e mail the recruiter, mention what's happening and get the interview process started while waiting for next term

Something like (depending on previous communication):

  • "Hi, we had last spoke in (whenever it was) about (what you talked about). I am still very interested in working with (your company) but due to a unexpected class availability while studying abroad, I am not going to be able to graduate until (whenever it is).

    Let me know if this presents a problem, we had previously spoken about (this is the process or timeline you talked with them about before).

Just remember, you care a whole lot more than they do. For them it's just another potential employee...

  • As stated, the recruiter probably views you as a warm body more than anything else. If there is a specific employer who you were supposed to talk to, realize that saying, "Sorry, I couldn't manage my graduation requirements" probably isn't the best message to send either. – jmac Mar 25 '13 at 23:45

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