What is Career Coaching?

Learn about the possibilities

Every University Division student has a career coach. We specialize in helping you discover who you are, ways to build experience, and how to highlight your skills in a resume or interview. 

What should I expect?

Coaching sessions are free and generally last 30 minutes at a time that works best for you. You don't have to prepare anything in advance - your trained career coach will spend time talking and listening to you to learn about your goals and get you started designing your college path. 

Possible conversation topics

In a Career & Major Exploration appointment you will take time to explore careers and majors that are interesting to you. Your career coach will help you identify your values, interests, personality, and skills - explaining how they relate to major & career choices. You will learn about valuable resources to help you discover the ins-and-outs of all your options.

Before your appointment, identify any careers or majors that you’ve ever thought might be interesting. During the appointment, your career coach will ask you lots of questions so they can learn about the types of career and major areas that are interesting to you.

All college students should plan to attend career fairs in order to network with employers and explore career paths. In a Career Fair Prep appointment, your career coach will help you develop your ‘elevator pitch’ and show you how to identify employers that match your interests. You will discuss how to effectively navigate a career fair and manage stress.

Before your appointment, identify any questions you have about navigating a career fair, and review the list of the employers who will attend, noting which ones you would like to talk to at the fair.

In a Cover Letter appointment your career coach will teach you the simple formula for writing a great cover letter. You will learn how to carefully read a job description and highlight your marketable skills in your letter.

Before your appointment, print out (or email to your career coach) the job description you’re writing the cover letter for. Write a rough draft of your cover letter so your coach can help refine it. Also, bring your resume to the appointment so your career coach can have some info about your skills and experiences.

Refer to the page on our Student Employment website for more information on cover letters.

Cover Letter Guide

In a Graduate School Application Process appointment, your career coach will talk with you about your long-term career goals and how a graduate degree will help you achieve those goals. They will share resources that will help you research graduate programs and take the proper steps of preparation.

Before your appointment, identify questions you have regarding graduate school. They will share resources with you about researching graduate programs relative to your field, as well as provide you a list of things to be thinking about before you apply.

Preparing for Graduate School Website

Gaining experience outside of your coursework is important as you prepare for a career. In an Internship Search Strategies appointment, your career coach will emphasize the importance of networking to find internships, teach you where to look for internships, and walk you through how to apply.

Before your appointment, think about what type of skills you would like to gain in an internship. Make a list of potential places that you would like to intern. If you already have internships in mind, make sure to bring the descriptions to your appointment.

In an Interview Prep appointment, your career coach will help you prepare for the ‘unknown’ elements of an interview by providing you will several steps you can take to succeed.

Before your appointment, print out and bring a copy of your resume, the job or internship description (if you have one), as well as any additional information (research) you might have regarding the position for which you might interview. Also, give thought to what you anticipate wearing to an interview as well as the type of thank you notes you might send following your interview.

Refer to the page on our Student Employment website for more information on interviewing:

Interviewing Guide

In a Mock Interview appointment, you have a chance to practice your interview skills prior to having an actual interview.  Your career coach will give you feedback and suggestions about how to best navigate the interview environment.

Before your appointment, create a list of your concerns about interviews to discuss with your career coach. Identify a position of interest and bring a copy of your resume as well as any additional information (research) you have done on a position and employer. Also, dress just like you would for an actual interview.  This will give you a chance to practice wearing your interview attire.

Refer to the page on our Student Employment website for more information on interviewing:

Interviewing Guide

An MBTI Results appointment is for students who have already taken the online MBTI assessment.  If you have not already completed the assessment, you may wish to choose the “self-assessment” topic and discuss with your career coach whether the MBTI is the right assessment for you. 

After you have taken the assessment, there is nothing else you need to do before the appointment. Your career coach will interpret your results and discuss the possibilities for career exploration efforts.

Make sure to choose a 60-minute appointment, the interpretation will take approximately an hour to complete.

In a networking appointment, your career coach will help you to identify the key professionals and resources in your network and will help you create strategies to reach out to your network to maximize your career potential.

Before your appointment, identify the people that you already have in your network. Fellow students, professors, and supervisors are great examples of some of the people you may already have in your network.

Refer to the page on our Student Employment website for more information on informational interviews.

Informational Interview Guide

In a Part-time Job Search appointment, your career coach will walk you through how to find part-time jobs, what the application process will include, and how to prepare your application.

Before your appointment, make a list of the types of part-time jobs you would like to pursue. If you already have a specific part-time job in mind, bring the job description as well as your resume (even if it’s just a draft).

In a Self-Assessment appointment, your career coach will discuss the formal assessments associated with your values, interests, personality and skills. They will explain how these assessments can help you research and discover majors and careers that may be a good fit for you. Also, they will guide you through the process of signing up for the assessments and receiving your results.

Before your appointment, reflect on what you already know about yourself. During the appointment, make sure to tell your career coach if you have taken a career development course or any of the assessments in the past.

A Strong Interest Inventory (SII) Results appointment is for students who have already taken the online SII assessment.  If you have not already completed the assessment, you may wish to choose the “self-assessment” topic above and discuss if the SII is the right assessment for you. 

After you have taken the assessment, there is nothing else you need to do before the appointment. Your career coach will interpret your results and discuss the possibilities for career exploration efforts.

Make sure to choose a 60-minute appointment, the interpretation will take approximately an hour to complete.

In a Resume Writing appointment, your career coach will help you format and develop each piece of your professional resume. You will learn how to tailor your resume to specific job descriptions and highlight your marketable skills in your accomplishment statements (bullet points).

Before your appointment, print out any drafts of your resume that you have. If you have never written a resume before, make a list of all of the experiences (jobs, volunteering, student organizations, etc.). Also, bring the description for any specific job or internship that interests you.

Refer to our resume tool for more information on resume writing:

CDC Resume Tool

Discover who you are

Your career coach can help you discover who you are through asking about your values, interests, personality, and skills. Not sure where to start? We have some assessments that we can guide you through. Meet with your career coach to learn more! 

  • Skills
    • Choosing a career path that aligns with your skills will help you be successful in your professional life.

  • Values
    • Your job satisfaction depends on how well your career choice aligns with your values.

  • Personality
    • Personality preferences determine how you respond to the outside world, take in information, make decisions, and structure your environments.

  • Interests
    • Your interests determine whether you’re bored or engaged by your surroundings.

Values

Your values shape your thoughts, influence your worldview, and help you decide what actions to take. Your career coach will guide you through the Life Values Inventory and other activities, so you can identify your values. 

  • What's important to you?
  • What issues and causes do you care about?
  • How do you spend extra time and/or money?

Interests

The secret to finding a fulfilling career lies in identifying the things you already like to do—in other words, your interests. Your career coach will help you understand your interests by guiding you through the Strong Interest Inventory®.

  • What topics could you talk endlessly about?
  • What do you do when you have free time?
  • What do you want to learn more about?

Personality

By exploring your personality, you will learn more about how you prefer to derive your energy, process new information, make decisions, and which environments are best suited for you.

  • At the end of a long day, would you rather go out with a big group of friends or stay home and watch Netflix? Knowing whether you're an extrovert or an introvert can help you find the type of work environment that's right for you.
  • Do you make decisions with your head or your heart?