Helping your Bethel student with career development requires a delicate balance between showing them how and allowing them to figure it out on their own. We've put together some brief info to help you understand career development basics.
The Career Development Process
We use a four-stage model to show how students typically develop from entering college to a career. Depending on where they're at, such as maturity and self-awareness, students progress through the stages at different rates; but it's not necessarily one stage per year. We encourage students to meet with a career specialist as they move through each stage.
The goal of this phase is to develop self-awareness, including identifying their interests, skills, values, abilities, and personality. We recommend that students schedule a career counseling appointment and also take a career assessments including:
- Strong Interest Inventory
- Myers-Briggs Type Indicator
The goals of this phase are to understand career options and the world of work, including industries, companies, and job titles, and to identify an initial career direction. We recommend that students learn about careers through informational interviews with professionals in the field and research on O*Net.
Students can then use the information they've learned from the first two stages to identify an initial career direction, such as choosing a major. We recommend students meet with a career specialist and their academic advisor to discuss what they've learned about themselves and career options before confirming their major and career direction.
The goal of this stage is to narrow down career options to ones that fit your student's skills and values. We recommend students engage in experiences that allow them to get a sense for what will be the right fit while building their resumes and professional connections, including:
- Part-time jobs
- Job shadowing
- Informational interviews
- Other experiential learning opportunities
The goal of this stage is to for your student to successfully transition into a career or continuing education. We recommend starting this process 12 months before graduation. To secure a job by graduation, students must prepare for and execute a job search by:
- Learning effective job search strategies (especially networking)
- Developing an effective resume and cover letter
- Practicing interviewing techniques
Our career specialists are available to meet regularly with students throughout their senior year to help them perfect job search skills while learning about the latest job postings.
Once a job is offered, we can help students learn how to negotiate a job offer and plan a smooth transition to life after Bethel. If students are considering graduate school immediately, we can also help them with that process, including:
- Deciding if graduate school is a good option
- Searching for a fitting program
- Preparing for examinations
- Submitting an application and effective writing samples