It’s never too early to start thinking about the future
Many students don’t set foot in the campus Career Center until they’re a senior, frantic to get their résumé critiqued so they can find a job. It’s wise, however, to visit this helpful office early on—even during the first year—because career counselors can help students get on track and explore career options they may not have known about otherwise.
Jobs within Different Majors. For instance, many career offices offer helpful lists of “What You Can Do with a ____ Major.” If your student is a biology major, does she know about options beyond the lab? She can work for an environmental group, take a job in a zoo, teach, be a science writer and so much more.
Personal Career Inventories. Your student can also take a career inventory or two to identify possible interests. Many of these personal surveys can be done online, right in the career center. And the trained professionals within the office can help students go over their results and determine their next steps.
A Career File. Opening a career file makes sense, too. This is a way for your student to develop a relationship with one of the career counselors and to start a personal paper trail. This file might include letters of recommendation for summer jobs/internships, inventory results, résumé drafts and more. Why not start now?
Resources Aplenty. The career center is also chock full of resources! Spending an hour in this office flipping through books, magazines and journals is time well spent.
So, encourage your student to make an appointment at the career center this semester. The earlier the better, before the center gets bombarded with juniors and seniors in a frenzy. Help your student not be one of these frantic upperclassmen. Instead, he’ll be a well-informed, well-prepared student taking control of his own destiny.
To prepare for filling out job applications and preparing a résumé, students should be able to:
- List their previous employers with contact names, addresses and phone numbers.
- List their dates of employment in chronological order.
- List the accurate names and dates of awards they’ve received.
- List various community service/volunteer efforts, along with accurate dates and agency/organization names.
Having these pieces of information readily on hand will help your student be able to easily fill out an application at a moment’s notice.