By Rodrigo Valverde and Dylan Leverett
Getting started on one’s career path is never an easy thing, and it can be stressful without proper guidance.
Career services can help students with almost anything career-related whether it’s resume building, finding a job or even choosing the right career.
According to TR career and employment services coordinator Kristin Vinson Wright, many incoming freshmen are not prepared when it comes to having a resume. She says they are not sure how to note their work experience or they don’t have any work experience.
“What we’re going to be doing, in conjunction with advising and counseling, is working with first-time-in-college students to make sure they have a resume,” she said. “Even if you don’t have any experience, maybe you’ve volunteered somewhere or you were a team captain for the football team, we have something that we can put together that you can showcase.”
SE career services senior office assistant Dennis Fiveash explained the logic behind the board of trustees’ push to close the gap between career services and advising.
“If you are taking your basics, you’re not owning it,” Fiveash said, “When you see [a career path] on a deeper level, you’ll be more inclined to stick around.”
Career services can also help students find jobs and internships. Wright says many employers would like to give students internships, and that’s why a resume is necessary.
One of the big ways students can find employment is through College Central Network, an online database of about 2,000 jobs available to all five campuses.
Often when students first get into college, they don’t know their major. Career services can also help them in that area as well.
Students can take a free career assessment that explores different options and helps them make well-informed decisions about their career and education.
“We encourage students to come in, especially in the beginning, to see if they’re on the right path and to make sure their career choice is what they have in mind,” South career and employment services coordinator Monica Miranda said.
Miranda said career services employees can also speak to students on career trends, salaries and the job market around the time of graduation. Career services will soon help students practice their interview skills by offering mock interviews through a webcam streaming program, she said.
Wright believes students should be able to tell an employer, a teacher and anyone else who they are and what their career goals are in 30 seconds or less.
Fiveash said that it is also important to catch an employer’s eye, but to not be superfluous.
“If someone has 200 resumes to go through, you don’t want to write out full sentences,” he said.
“You never know who knows who,” Wright said. “Connections is what it’s all about, and we want to teach you how to be successful in your career.”