With graduation quickly approaching, and students already overloaded with information and emails, the decisions that will shape student’s future can be overwhelming. From choosing between going into graduate school or the work force, picking the most desired area of work, honing on of skills developed during undergraduate, a lot of choices must be made in a short amount of time. But there is a resource available to all students that is often forgotten or overlooked: the University Career Services. This department’s sole focus is on preparing students for graduation and the paths that lie beyond. There are several key tools that UCS provides, as well as in person resources.
Careerolina is, as the name suggests, a tool that will help students choose their future career as well as networking them with people who will be able to help set up jobs for the students. On the Careerolina site, which is accessible with a UNC Onyen, even if the Onyen has expired so Careerolina remains useful even after graduation, provides job and internship listings, a breakdown of the most popular careers and their projected growth, surveys for students who do not yet know what sort of job they would like, as well as a calendar and schedule of upcoming events. These events include job fairs where students will be able to meet representatives of companies that are hiring. This key networking component gives students an advantage that puts them above people who are looking for jobs without these connections.
From College to Career
UCS also provides several helpful documents that are aimed to prepare students for what life will be like outside of the academic setting. Because students have been in the classroom for so many years, moving into the work place is a big transition, and UCS hopes to ease that transition with a few helpful hints. These tips include how to adjust to specific work settings, how to interact with fellow employees, as well as laying out several key differences between school and work; while you can get away with missing a class, missing a day of work is not the same!
Resumes and Letters
Another key area that UCS focuses on is teaching students how to properly prepare a resume and cover letter. While these takes appear simple and students have been preparing resumes since high school, a properly laid out resume with the right information on it could be the difference between an employer taking notice of your name in a stack of 200 applicants or just being another sheet of paper someone has to look over. They even include videos on how to prepare cover letters and references and a thorough slide show, with video presentation, on resumes.
Departmental UCS Staff
While the whole UCS staff is trained to help students find the career that is just right for them, UCS also has staff in the specific departments who are more focused on students in those departments and the possible jobs for them. These UCS coordinators are constantly looking for new opportunities to send on to the department to share, or to share directly with the departmental listserv.
With all of these tools, it is hard to believe that students never use UCS, but for some students, there is just too much information being given to them that they do not recognize useful information when they see it. For some, any UCS email is just one of 40 in any given day, with 4 or 5 coming from professors announcing a pop test the next day or an assignment has been moved up, parents asking if they are coming home for the weekend or why they are spending so much money, jobs asking if they can devote more time for less pay or cutting time for even less pay, student organizations announcing some activity for the week, or any one of so many emails that pour through the campus system each day.
UNC home: http://careers.unc.edu/
From College to Career: http://careers.unc.edu/students/college-career