Encourage your student to visit the Career Center during the first semester to use our many resources, such as interest inventories, career books and occupational guides. Most importantly, they will make a connection with a staff member at the Career Center—someone they can come to for help, advice or information throughout college.
Help your student to understand that the Career Center should be used throughout college, not just during the senior year. Finding a career doesn't happen in a week or two—they need a plan! Students who wait until senior year are missing out on many career preparation opportunities. Start early... Gain an advantage by using all our resources from the beginning.
Challenge your student to become 'career literate'. There is more to a career than simply a job. Students need to know about options within different industries and what employers expect. The Career Center can help with your student's understanding about career options, types of work, compensation, and advanced education. "What Can I Do With This Major?" is a helpful pdf you may want to see.
Emphasize valuable and career-focused work experiences. Semester breaks and summer are great times to job shadow, serve a mini internship, or conduct information interviews with professionals. Help your student find work-place learning options that give them exposure to professional experiences. Introduce your student to your boss, co-workers or other people who might be able to offer good advice, or simply serve as career mentors. Let them shadow you at work and see the different person you are in a career environment. Work is a huge part of who we are... Help your student see that their career will shape them just as they will shape their own careers.
Encourage campus involvement. A very large part of the college experience occurs beyond the classroom. Being involved with clubs, organizations, and events improves communication, teamwork, project management, and overall leadership skills - skills in high demand!
Encourage your student to build career documentation early in the college years. Career documents such as a resume, a general cover letter, or a writing sample will be easier to develop if your son or daughter uses our services to learn these life-long skills.
Support career exploration. It's ok if your student decides to change majors, although we wouldn't encourage this after the junior year. Simply majoring in something "because I'll get a job" usually results in dissatisfaction at best, poor academics at worst. Let them find what they love... Success will follow if they take the right steps.
Allow your student to make the career decisions. We understand that you have opinions and want to share those with your child. Remember, though, that it is your student who will live the career. Most people change careers four times in life; being able to make an informed decision about careers is a skill everyone needs to develop.