If your student is undecided about his/her major, or needs course advice, they should visit the Academic Advising Center at Memorial University, to set up an appointment with an academic advisor. The academic advisor will be there to assist your student in selecting courses that appropriately match the student’s interests. For more information please visit www.mun.ca/counselling/home/.
If your student is unclear about his/her career direction, encourage him/her to join the Career Planning Group offered through the Counseling Centre (UC-5000). Participants complete the Strong Interest Inventory, a widely used career planning tool which matches interests to particular occupations. This assessment will provide perspective on occupations of interest. Students must register online to attend. For more information visit www.mun.ca/counselling/home/.
They could also visit the Center for Career Development which offers a full range of career development sources and job-search tools such as Career Cruising, one-on-one career advising, mock interviews, career-related workshops, and books on a wide range of career topics.
1. Advise the preparation and critique of a résumé.
Encourage your student to develop their resume or revisit an old one to ensure it is up-to-date. If they don’t have one developed and are not sure how to develop one, the Centre for Career Development can assist them with that. You can review résumé drafts for grammar, spelling and content; however it is recommended that the final product be critiqued by a staff member at the Centre for Career Development.
2. Challenge them to become knowledgeable of occupational choices.
Encourage your son or daughter to think about what he/she wants to do upon graduation and share your insight about personal qualities you see as talents. A career decision should be a process and not a last-minute thought; discourage your son or daughter from putting this decision off until the last year of studies. The Centre for Career Development is an excellent place to start researching career fields and employers.
3. Step back and allow your son or daughter to make the decision.
Most often, students seek career advice and approval from their parents. Even though it is beneficial for you to inquire about your son or daughter's career plans, let your son or daughter be the ultimate judge of what is the best path. Let him/her be guided by personal interests and passions. Be patient and understanding, even if you do not agree with his/her career decision. Like most students before them, they will find their way.
4. Encourage extracurricular involvement.
Part of experiencing university life is to be involved and engaged outside the classroom. Interpersonal and leadership skills – qualities valued by future employers – are often developed in extracurricular activities. There are many on-campus leadership activities administered through Student Services. Encourage them to get involved in sports, social clubs, and/or university politics to diversify themselves.
5. Illustrate the value of networking.
The majority of jobs today are obtained through the “hidden job market” as opposed to through formal postings. Introduce your student to friends and colleagues who have careers that are of interest. Suggest that your son or daughter contact people in your personal and professional networks for information on part-time and summer employment. Encourage your son or daughter to “shadow” someone in the workplace to gain a realistic job preview.
There is no such thing as an impractical degree. Each degree has a set of courses that are meant to develop different skills that can be useful in any career choice. There are many options for helping your student decide what to do with there degree. Career Development has a number of resources that can assist you. Visit www.mun.ca/cdel and click on any of the links to see what you can do with a degree in____. Another option is CareerCruising. Students can use this program to research career paths that are of interest. The important thing to remember is that part-time work, summer jobs, internships, co-op placements, and volunteering in conjunction with the degree can add more value and make your student more attractable in the future. Finding your career path doesn’t always come directly from the classroom but having a degree does enhance your student’s salability.
The center for career development offers a variety of services such as:
- Career Planning
- Résumé/CV Preparation
- Cover Letter Writing
- Interview Readiness
- Job Search Strategies
- Networking Techniques
- Informal Interviews
- Career Portfolios Dining Etiquette
- Occupational Profiles
- Information Sessions
- Real-time Career Chat
- Career E-Alerts
- One-on-one Career Consultations
- LSAT, GMAT, and GRE Information
Having relevant experience in a competitive job market is critical. Your son or daughter can sample career options through work terms, internships, on-campus employment, summer employment, and volunteer work. The Centre for Career Development administers several on-campus employment programs which serve to provide meaningful skill development opportunities. Students can also visit the Student Volunteer Bureau for information on volunteer opportunities. For more information on cooperative education degree programs, visit the Cooperative Education website.
On-campus employment opportunities are offered through the Centre for Career Development and include MUCEP, GradSWEP, and SWASP grants. All these job opportunities are located on campus and offer flexible hours to work around the student’s schedule.
Information about on-campus events can be found through the Online Calendar of Events at www.mun.ca/cdel/career_students/calendar.php or by signing up for the listserv at www.mun.ca/cdel/career_students/listserv.php . As well, events are advertised through posters located in various areas throughout campus. Information can also be found by contacting the Centre for Career Development at 864-2033, or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
The Center for Career Development offers many services that can help your student find a job that relates to his/her experience. The center offers a job search workshop which gives different techniques on finding employment. The Center also offers employer information sessions throughout the year which give an idea of who is hiring, who they are looking for, and what skills are of interest. Your student can visit the Center for Career development to drop of their resume and cover letter to be critiqued, and also book a mock interview to better prepare them for their job search. The Center also houses a variety of books and several computers that can be used in all job search activities. Finally each year the Center for Career Development puts off a Career and Graduate School Fair that gives students the opportunity to network with employers, ask questions and submit résumés.