Career Road Map Journey #4: Who I Am

Each of your career road map journeys should have helped to solidify your career choices. Once those choices are solidified, you should have no problem articulating to a prospective employer your qualifications, credentials, as well as your long term career goals.

Professional Brand Identity

International student is pictured studying at PNW.

Informational Interviewing

Image of students talking

Informational Interviews involve talking to people about their careers and what they do in their jobs. Conducting an informational interview is about gathering information about an industry or occupation, not about asking for a job.  Consider the following questions:

  • What did you learn or confirm about the career you discussed?
  • What questions did you ask that provided the best information for you?
  • What additional information do you need to better prepare for a career?

Create a Job Search Plan

Students pictured have access to career and employment trends from the PNW Career Center.

Create a job search plan based on where you are in your academic program. The job search plan could be for an internship, seasonal employment or your first full-time professional job. You must complete the following activities:

  • Watch this 4 minute video on job search.
  • Create a Word document that lists three to five job search engines that are specific to your employment opportunity of interest.
  • Seek out three to five examples of internships, seasonal employment, or full-time professional openings that are similar to your area of interest. You will copy and paste these job postings into a Word document.
  • You will then scan the job postings for key words that are listed in the job posting as desired characteristics, qualifications or educational requirements.
  • Remember when you did the internet research about the occupations that interested you in Journey #1? The research that you saved in a file folder should include certain key words that are specific to your occupation of interest. Does your résumé include those same key words? Remember, most applicant tracking systems are set up so that hiring managers can search for résumés based on keywords. Linkedin is set up this way too!
  • Do your research by identifying three to five companies where their industry aligns with your occupational interests. Complete the Company Research Worksheet to assist you in your job search planning.
  • Need to do more research and preparation? Check out Glassdoor.com.

Interview Preparation

Being able to communicate your qualifications, experience and abilities is a critical step in becoming career ready. You will learn how important it is to prepare for an interview:

  • Watch the 7-minute video on interviewing techniques (introduction to the S.T.A.R. behavioral method)
  • Write down three to four examples that you might use in an interview using the S.T.A.R. Method.
  • Now it is time to reflect on what you have learned by recording yourself:
  • What did you learn about your body language, presentation (voice, eye contact, fidgeting, movement, comfort, etc.)
  • What did you learn about preparing for questions using the S.T.A.R. Method?
  • Do you need to practice further? Contact the the Career Center at thecareercenter@pnw.edu to schedule a Mock Interview.
  • Go talk to an advisor, counselor, parent, friend, etc. and ask about their experience in interviewing. Ask them to practice with you. Ask how you might improve. Find out their feedback by asking:
  • Did I sound funny to you?
  • Did I say “like” every other word? Did I say “umm” a lot?
  • Did you seem to know what employers would ask during interviews?

Additional Suggested Activities For Journey #4

  • Finalize your résumé for application and have it reviewed by the Career Center.
  • Attend a professional conference that relates to your field of interest.
  • Continue leadership roles in campus organizations.
  • Continue to network with professionals in your desired field of interest.
  • Attend workshops and seminars held by campus departments for professional development.
  • Obtain graduate school application deadlines and prepare a timeline for application.
  • Attend job fairs to network with employers and search for internships / full-time / part-time employment.
  • Collect letters of recommendation or permission for references for employment.
  • Register and participate in on campus recruitment and interviews for jobs and internships.
  • Continue your internship and/or job search (hint: Handshake is a free service to students and alumni of PNW).
  • Enhance your online LinkedIn profile.

GO BACK TO CAREER ROAD MAP JOURNEY #3

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