Whether you’re searching for an internship after your freshman year or hunting for a job before graduation, figuring out your career path is hard. The career center on campus solely exists to make this less hard. If this simple fact still hasn’t sold you on taking a stroll to the career center, here are a few more less obvious reasons and ways that the career center can have your back in a major way.
*I’m going to be fully transparent here and say I feel a little hypocritical writing this week’s blog post, simply because I didn’t take my own advice when I was in college. But when I tell you that I’ve kicked myself about that choice so many times since, I’m not lying. I floundered after graduation and really didn’t figure out a career path until years and years later. I’m convinced that the process was harder than it needed to be, simply because I tried to do it alone. GO TO YOUR CAMPUS CAREER CENTER.*
Reason #1: They can help you figure out what you want to do with your life.
The thought of going to the career center didn’t even cross my mind in my first couple years of college, because… why would it? I wasn’t yet embarking on a career. That was my first mistake (of many). The counselors aren’t solely there just to help seniors figure out their careers. They can help you figure out what sort of career you might eventually want to pursue, based on your interests, talents, and so on. That information can be used to guide decisions about majors, internships, and, you know, all those other important things you should be thinking about long before senior year. Don’t sleep on the career center just because you’re “only” a freshman.
Reason #2: It is a pretty easy way to network.
There are a lot of times when you’ll need to go out of your comfort zone to network and schmooze with people who can help you on your career path. This really isn’t one of them. It’s on campus, it is there to help you, and there isn’t too much “putting yourself out there” required. The career center is a pretty painless way to get in touch with alumni, recruiters, employers, and other people who can be a massive help on your academic and professional path.
Reason #3: It’s where the experts are.
Honestly, I was under the impression that if I had good grades and could write a coherent cover letter, the job search wouldn’t be very hard. Yikes. Just like college admissions counselors, most hiring managers are flooded with applications from smart and capable applicants, and it is crucial that you stand out somehow. That’s where the experts come in! Your school’s career center is staffed with people who have made careers out of the crazy job hunt process. This is their area of expertise. They can help you say the right things to the right people. Sure, maybe you’re a scrappy genius who can find a job all on their own, but why not stack the deck in your favor by enlisting the experts too?
Reason #4: It’s stocked full of resources you can’t find on Google.
At your school’s career center, you can find a lot of invaluable information and resources that you can’t get on Indeed or LinkedIn. They’ve got the hook up on things like unposted internship opportunities, campus career fairs, and the 411 on local companies and organizations. Plus, because the experts at the career center have worked with so many students in your exact shoes, they have a lot of insight that you just can’t find anywhere else. We’re talking what majors recent graduates in your field chose, which places they interned, which company ultimately hired them, and what their starting salary was. Take advantage of the insider info they have!
Reason #5: You’ve paid for it and IT’S RIGHT THERE.
Your tuition money is paying for the career counselors and experts at your school’s career center. Why on earth would you let it go to waste?! Go use this brilliant resource that is at your fingertips. I hate to break it to you but once you graduate, it is much harder to get help like this. So run, don’t walk, to your college’s career center ASAP.
You don’t have to wait until you’re officially in college to start figuring out which academic and professional path is right for you. At the Enrichery, our certified Birkman professionals will walk you through the career typing or signature Birkman assessment to help you figure out where you may want to go to college and what you want to study there. It can even help you figure out what you want to do beyond graduation!
And, of course, when you’ve figured out where and what you want to study, we’re here to help you make that a reality too. At the Enrichery College Workshop, we’ll help you write a killer essay and finish all of your apps before senior year even starts! We’ve got a few spots left for this summer, so book your spot ASAP.