I’ve written a bit about the importance of frequenting your campus’s career services office during all four years of college. Preparing for the work world begins your freshman year, not the final semester of your senior year.
Career preparation—even if you’re not exactly sure what you want to do—must be a core part of your undergraduate experience.
Here’s an excerpt from a Los Angeles Times article that explores the subject further:
“Alicia Mendoza was working two part-time jobs when she transferred to Northeastern Illinois University. Swamped with work, school, and a daily commute, bolstering her resume with something extra was the last thing on her mind.
She thought getting good grades was enough to land her a job after graduation. Now she knows better.
‘You can have a perfect 4.0 GPA, but that does not guarantee you a job,’ said Mendoza, now a 24-year-old MBA student and graduate assistant in Northeastern’s College of Business and Management in Chicago.
Good Grades Aren’t Enough
Colleges and universities expend a lot of effort getting students in the doors, but there are worries that there isn’t enough focus on making sure the recruits land good jobs after graduation. More than half of college graduates say they visited their school’s career services office at least once, but only 16% said it was helpful, according to a recent report from Gallup and Purdue University.
The need for change in career services is evident, according to the report. Gallup found that barely one in 10 U.S. business leaders think a college education equips people with the right skills for their business.
Career services needs to be more than just an office students visit their senior year, said Brandon Busteed, executive director of education and workforce development at Gallup. It needs to reach students when they’re freshmen and incorporate mentors, internships, and work experience.
Some colleges have already begun making moves to do that. They are becoming mindful that not everyone comes from the same background, and not everyone is heading in the same direction.
The Career Development Center at Loyola University Chicago was reorganized about three years ago to expand and better prepare students for their careers.
It partners with Greek affairs, teaches classes, and makes contact at freshman orientation. It maintains some of its traditional roles—advising students, tweaking resumes—but with a twist.”
For more, visit the Los Angeles Times.