You have the first full week of the semester under your belt and more than half of January has passed. It’s amazing how time flies, right? We comment on that in our office regularly and we often hear remarks from students on how quickly each semester passes. The lesson we take from that realization is this: if it’s not planned out, there’s a good chance it won’t happen!
This semester, Blog postings will continue to offer advice on career planning and your job/internship/graduate school search, a few resources that we’d like spotlight, and monthly posts from our student workers on their perspectives. However, I’d also like to incorporate action items or activities – things that you can do to further your own career development – whenever possible.
In the spirit of planning, this week I’m introducing a plan developed by the National Association of Colleges and Employers called: Climb to Your Career in Four Years. Although the name suggests that you must begin your climb on day one of your college experience, the more important objective is that you devote whatever time is necessary to thinking about and engaging in your career planning.
Here are themes and a few of the activities they’ve identified:
First Year – Asking questions, exploring your options
- Identify at least four skills employers want in ideal candidates and plan how you will acquire these skills before graduation.
- Schedule an appointment with Career Services to familiarize yourself with available resources.
Second Year – Researching options/testing paths
- Each semester, review your progress in developing the skills employers look for in candidates.
- Work toward one leadership position in a club or activity.
Third Year – Making decisions/plotting directions
- Complete at least five informational interviews in careers you want to explore
- Take leadership positions in clubs and organizations
Fourth Year – Searching, interviewing, accepting, success!
- Participate in interviewing workshops and practice interviews
- Develop an employer prospect list of organizations you’re interested in pursuing
Although they designate activities by class-year, you can adjust accordingly based on where you are now. Days and weeks will continue going by quickly with assignments and projects continually being added to your calendar. Make sure you plan time for your career journey; you don’t want to get to the end of four years and still have the full climb ahead of you!
Gwen Miller, associate director, career services