I am currently a graduating senior studying Economics and Data Analysis (will be graduating a semester early). Over the course of my college years, I have focused on taking research-oriented class: Econometrics, Government Research Methods, Psychology Research Methods, Computational Packages, etc. I have a good gpa- will be graduating summa cum laude and have received a couple of awards from my university. I have done three research-oriented internships- two with think tanks and a fellowship at my university that kind of was like a book club/we discussed political economy works with professors and guests of the department. I am also fluent in French and Arabic. My research interests include studying economic development and its impact on ethnic conflict, political economy (specifically of countries in the MENA region), and behavioral economics. I reallllllllly want to do a research project with a professor after I graduate, but I have been getting a lot of rejections . This is mostly due to the economic department of my school being very oriented in one subject matter and not doing anything international related (I have taken international relations classes to make up for this). I have talked to both my Econ and Government professors and I always get "this is not our focus, have you tried this school?". I don't know if it is the way I approach them or if they really don't know anything about that field, but I haven't been getting much help. I tell them that I am desperate on getting on any project really, I just need to start some where. My school prides itself on being one the largest research universities on the East coast but alllllll the research positions are given based on connections. When I reach out to my advisers and professors they nicely say that my aspirations should be sought out in other bigger schools in our area.... and I am like ummmm can you connect me with anyone there???!!! I know post grad life is a hard and getting a lot of rejections is normal, but I was wondering what the best method in would be seeking opportunities outside of my university. Job listing forums like Linkedin, Monster, and Handshake seem like black holes to me. Also, what would you guys suggest doing in the meantime to improve my research skills? Are there any good programs for graduates who are interested in a career in research/academia?