All students are ultimately preparing for their next step after UT whether that is a full-time job or continuing education. While the Center for Career Development & Academic Exploration serves over 19,000 students a year, embedding career development into the curriculum is the only way to assure that all students are exposed to career development. The center encourages faculty to utilize the ideas below to weave career assignments into the courses they teach. Several samples are included that can be modified to fit your class needs. Contact a staff member if you need assistance in creating an appropriate assignment.
Center staff encourages students to gain the career competencies expected by future employers and learn how to effectively articulate their experiences. Include career competencies that students will develop in your course on the syllabus. Periodically refer to these competencies in discussions and ask students to reflect on them. While it may seem obvious to you, sometimes students need help connecting the dots between their coursework and skill development.
Assessments and inventories can increase students’ self-knowledge. Require students to take PathwayU or Typefocus and reflect on their interests, values, and personality as it relates to career decision making. Center staff can be scheduled to discuss assessment results in class.
Research assignments on careers and industries associated with your course can help students connect their students to their career goals. Assign a paper or presentation and require students to utilize career resources provided by the Center for Career Development & Academic Exploration such as Vault or What Can I Do With This Major?
Require or give extra credit to students who attend a job fair or other career event. Encourage students to attend career events. The center hosts dozens of job fairs, networking events, career panels, and other workshops designed to help students explore career interests, meet alumni and employers, and gain access to opportunities. Ask students to reflect on the experience by sharing what they learned at the event.
The center offers resources related to crafting a resume that communicates skills and experiences gained during college. Require students to create a resume utilizing the resume guide and have it critiqued by Peer Career Advisors at the Center for Career Development & Academic Exploration during drop-in hours. Please notify the center if you require a resume critique to help PCAs prepare for demand.
The ability to effectively communicate career interests, experiences, and competencies gained through job interviews is a skill that can be honed. The Vol Guide to Interviewing provides interview preparation information, lists of sample questions to expect, and guidance on providing responses. Assign a practice interview that students can complete utilizing Big Interview. Staff have compiled an instructor and student user guide to help you get started with Big Interview.
Handshake is the university’s comprehensive job board for part-time jobs, internships, and full-time positions. Require students to activate and complete their Handshake profile. Require students to find three jobs of interest and analyze what parts about the position or organization appeal to them. Students tell us they want to connect their majors to careers, and this is a concrete way for them to see the types of positions available to them upon graduation.
Connecting with other professionals through LinkedIn is a useful tool to explore career interests and sourcing job opportunities. Require your students to create a LinkedIn profile and have it reviewed by a Peer Career Advisor at the center.
Learning from professionals in fields of interest can be a powerful career development activity for students to take. However, many students are not apt to do this on their own. Assign an informational interview to help students take advantage of insights only an insider can provide.