College Student Career Planning
TheHBCUCareerCenter guides diverse students through the personal self-discovery process and how they ultimately translate their talents, life experiences and education into meaningful employment and lifelong sustainability. If you are a college student or new alumni, career planning should be on your mind from day one.
The 5-Point Career Development Model (CDM) outlined below is designed to help students, or anyone else for that matter, make informed decisions about career planning, professional experiences, career choices and lifelong learning.
The CDM helps to integrate Values, Interests, Skills and Abilities (V.I.S.A.) with education and career interests into lifelong career management skills needed to succeed in an evolving workplace. After reading the information for each point, select the point in the CDM to explore related resources. Since every student is different, the points are not necessarily sequential. Students are encouraged to visit the HBCU Career Center on their campus and work with professional staff from their freshman year.
Explore their Values, Interests, Skills and Abilities or what I call your V.I.S.A. and how these factors influence career choices. Use the Personal Exploration Links for free career assessments and discuss the results with your career center.
Once you have done your personal exploration it is important to expand awareness of careers and industries. You have to know what’s available, what’s changing and where you might be a great fit as part of an evolving industry or contemporary workplace. Learn what skills and competencies are in demand and what employers want from new hires. Use the Career and Industry Awareness links to research careers, industries and companies.
You must take ownership of your own career plans and your personal brand. Students and emerging professionals must understand how to become the kind of professional that the labor market needs. Resumes, communication skills, interviewing skills, social media presence, networking and personal image management are critical to building a personal brand. Read our blog and connect on Facebook, LinkedIn or Twitter for current, relevant updates on career trends, what employers want and how to develop a marketable brand.
With personal exploration, knowledge of industry and a managed brand, the next step is to find ways to get meaningful professional experiences, through internships, co-ops, field experiences, volunteer opportunities, full time careers and even study-abroad. Explore your college campus for the career center and other departments that organize these types of activities.
Prepare for life as an alumni and develop plans to transition to life after college. Your goal is to master the skills to make a successful transition from college to careers and to succeed in that first year on the job. We have tons of resources here will help with Graduate School or finding success in the first years on the job.