Taking time to find the right job for you is one of the most important and worthwhile ways you can spend your time. Doing work you think is valuable and that you enjoy doing is an important part of building a great life after Penn State. Luckily, Penn State has many FREE resources available to you anytime to help you in your search. In addition to your academic advisor, two of the key resources to use as you plan your career are the Career Enrichment Network and the Penn State Bank of America Career Services Office. The Career Enrichment Network was developed by Penn State just to help majors in the College of the Liberal Arts (like you!) learn to identify and market their many unique and valuable skills. They offer many services specifically targeted to Liberal Arts students such as CliftonStrengths® to help identify your strengths, personal consultations to talk things over, help with resumes, applications and cover letters, the Alumni Mentor program, internship information, tips for funding your enrichment activities outside the classroom like travel abroad or internships. The Penn State Bank of America Career Services Office also has a wide array of programs and services that facilitate career development for all students and alumni. They can help you clarify your interests and career goals, learn about career alternatives, learn tips for internet job searches, and help you connect with potential employers and graduate schools. They can also keep you informed about upcoming career fairs and make sure you are ready to shine, whatever direction you want to pursue.
What Is A Résumé?
- it’s a marketing tool
- it’s a summary of your experiences, academic preparation, and accomplishments which are relevant to career objectives and which attest to your work ethic, organizational skills, etc.
- It’s a snapshot of what you have to offer
- It is a fluid document that changes frequently
What A Résumé Is NOT:
- your résumé should not be an exhaustive list of everything you’ve ever done
- a résumé is not your autobiography
- résumés are not one-time projects which seniors complete right before or after they graduate
How Do I Get Started?
- reflect on your educational background, jobs you’ve had, organizations and activities in which you’ve participated, special honors you’ve achieved, and skills you’ve developed
- list these items using some of the headings above
- read about résumés and résumé styles
- start drafting! Don’t be afraid to try out different résumé styles to see which ones appeal to you
- consult with the counselors in Career Services or with the advisers in Oswald Tower if you feel “stuck”
Some Résumé Tips:
- proofread your résumé
- ask someone else to take a look at it, too
- focus on accomplishments rather than on descriptions of your duties
- be prepared to revise your résumé frequently
Networking involves talking to people and making contacts with individuals who can help you find out about job opportunities.
The U.S. Department of Labor reports that 70% of all job openings are not advertised, recruited for, or made known outside of an organization. In other words, 7 out of 10 jobs are secured through the “who do you know” method of job search.
But I Don't Have A Network…
Yes, you do! Think of all the different roles you have at this point in your life—and all of the people you know through those roles.
I am …
- a student
- a Penn Stater
- a volunteer at…
- an intern
- a member of my religious organization
- a former employee …
- a current employee at …
- a friend
- a niece/nephew
- a neighbor
All of these individuals are part of your network.
Ways To Expand Your Network
- participate in events involving alumni and visiting practitioners
- develop your curiosity about what people do professionally-talk to people about their jobs
- inquire about opportunities to job-shadow professionals for a day
- complete an internship
- participate in Lionlink– a networking service coordinated by Career Services and the Penn State Alumni Association; it’s free!
- always send a thank you note to anyone who’s extended a helping hand to you.
Searching For Jobs Online
Job-hunters shouldn’t focus all their energy on applying for jobs posted online, but it is helpful to check out different Web sites for job announcements. Here are some sites to check out.