It’s back to school season! There’s nothing like the excitement of returning to campus, reconnecting with friends, decorating your new room, starting classes, and preparing for the first tailgate of the season (Go Eagles!). I’d argue that the best part is the sense of new possibilities. Use this new energy to start your semester off strong. Here is a list of recommended actions to take to set yourself up for success.
1. Get on Handshake. Did you know that 60% of your peers have activated their Handshake accounts? Do yourself a favor and set up your account. Joining Handshake opens the door to 400k+ employers and endless job/internship opportunities. Follow our Handshake Guide to get started.
2. Update your interests. If you’re going to do one thing on Handshake, update your career interests. Doing this simple step will make a HUGE impact. Handshake will keep you updated on all events, job/internship opportunities, and resources related to your interests. You won’t need to even think about it! As a bonus, 80% of students who share their interests receive at least one message from an employer.
3. Find a mentor. Challenge yourself to expand your network and find your career champions—people you can speak to about your career goals, questions, and concerns. A great place to start is reaching out to alumni on Eagle Exchange. They’ve been where you are and they want to help you achieve your goals! You can ask them for advice on classes to take, clubs to join, how to apply for an opportunity, and more.
4. Meet with a career coach. No matter where you are on your journey, we have a coach who can help you get started and develop an action plan. We have exploration coaches to help you find your path as well as industry experts to help you launch a job, internship, or graduate school search.
5. Attend office hours. Your professors are incredible resources. Get to know your new professors this semester during office hours and discuss your career goals with them. They can be valuable mentors and potential references.
6. Join a club. Get involved with a student organization to meet new people with similar interests. Student organizations offer you the opportunity to build valuable skills, such as teamwork, communication, and leadership. Attend the upcoming Student Involvement Fair to explore new opportunities.
7. Get a part-time job. Gain real-world experience in addition to earning a paycheck. Whether or not it is directly related to your career aspirations, you will build skills that are sought by all employers. Our office can help you get the job! We have resources to help you put together a resume/cover letter and prepare to interview.
8. Attend events. Jump out of your comfort zone and attend an upcoming career program or event. We offer workshops, panels, career fairs, as well as specialty programs to help you reflect on your interests and explore careers.
Remember, there is no “correct” or “right” path to take. It depends on you and your goals. The Career Center is here to support you throughout this year and beyond, so don’t be a stranger! Our team looks forward to seeing you at our office, an event, or around campus soon!