Archive for the Career Exploration Category

World of Work: Hannah Richman ’08, California State Parks

Posted on October 8, 2014 with No Comments

Hannah Richman in her Park Ranger uniformHannah Richman ‘08
State Park Peace Officer (Ranger), California State Parks
Major: Anthropology & Political Science

How would you describe what you do on a typical day?

As a Park Ranger, I am charged with protecting the parks from the people and the people from the parks. It’s a balancing act between allowing people to explore and enjoy California State Parks while protecting the area for future generations to experience.

Tell us about your career path to this position.

I was an Anthropology major at UVM and had no idea what I wanted to do after I graduated. During my senior year of college, I went to a race at Angel Island State Park in California. When I got off the ferry, there was a Park Ranger on the island who struck up a conversation with me based on my hat (a State Parks hat I found at a thrift store). We started talking about his position and what an amazing job it was. He suggested that I go to the website and apply for a position in the spring. From there, it took me approximately 2 ½ years to get my job with the California State Parks and now I can’t imagine doing anything else.

What is your favorite part of your work?

Every park has different needs. At my current park I spend the majority of my time patrolling in various off-road vehicles, making sure the people are behaving safely, and rendering first aid where needed. A part of why I like my job so much is that I am not confined to doing just one thing. I always wanted to be a lawyer, teacher, doctor, or someone who doesn’t have to sit in an office all day. As a Park Ranger I am an EMT who gets to practice my skills on a regular basis, I have an extensive understanding of the law and the criminal justice system, and every day I get to speak with the public and teach them about the area they are visiting. As a bonus, I learn more about California’s natural and cultural resources every day.

What three words would describe your work environment?

Dynamic, Challenging, Entertaining

What advice do you have for students searching for jobs or internships in your field?

Anyone who is interested in working for California State Parks should go to www.parks.ca.gov and look under the jobs or volunteer headings. There are many opportunities to work for State Parks either as a volunteer or as a paid employee. Some of the jobs are part-time and seasonal positions and others are full-time employment. The Park Ranger position has many steps. Once the position is announced, the first step would be filling out a standard application found on the State Parks website.

Internships vs. Research

Posted on September 25, 2014 with No Comments

Intern and Researcher Collage

The line between an internship and research can sometimes be gray.

Internships and research are both valuable experiences that can build your resume, and students often ask about the differences between these two options.

Both research and internships are supervised experiences that allow you to gain knowledge, skills, and abilities in a particular field. Each offers the opportunity for reflection and evaluation of the information learned. These experiences will allow you to build your resume, explore your interests, and build connections that may be important for your future career. They can also help you develop “soft” skills, like critical thinking and problem solving, flexibility of mind, as well as allowing you to gain “hard” skills, such as grant writing, using databases, manuscript creation, using GIS, or printmaking.

Here’s where they differ:

An internship is experiential learning that combines classroom learning with work in a professional setting. Internships:

  • Are career-related work experience
  • Can be in nearly any field
  • Apply classroom theory to real world applications
  • Allow you to learn career related skills
  • Can be a chance to “try out” at a company or organization, which may decide to hire you after graduation

In contrast, The Council on Undergraduate Research defines research as, “An inquiry or investigation conducted by an undergraduate student that makes an original intellectual or creative contribution to the discipline (www.cur.org)”. Research:

  • Allows a student to be involved in the planning, conducting, and (ideally) reporting of a research project that leads to the creation of original knowledge in the discipline
  • Can happen in any academic field
  • Can be good training for graduate or medical school, getting your first job or the one after that
  • May allow you to publish a paper, have your own art show, or write a thesis
  • Can let you strengthen connections with faculty mentor (which may also lead to a letter of recommendation)

Interested in learning more? Come to the Internship Hop on October 8 from 1:30-4pm to hear about both research and internship opportunities. You can also check out the internship page on our website, or take a look at the website for the Office of Undergraduate Research.

~Amanda

6 Steps to Finding the Grad School for You

Posted on September 18, 2014 with No Comments

Graduation caps in the sky

If your graduate school search involves typing some buzzwords into Google with hopes of generating a condensed list of programs of interest, you will be pleased to know there are more efficient ways to research your options.

Although a basic Internet search can be a great way to begin, most people find the pure volume of information to be overwhelming. Here are 6 ways to tailor your search:

1. Ask professors, staff and graduate students in your field of interest. You’ll not only be able to learn about their own search process but they’re likely to give you recommendations of programs that fit your personal and professional goals.

2. Connect to professionals doing work that excites you. These folks have “been there, done that” and offer lessons from their own careers.

3. Research professional associations. Many provide graduate school advice and search resources.

4. Search online graduate school databases. Use these sites to conduct advanced searches that allow you to filter on criteria such as location and type of degree.

5. Visit your local library. Libraries often have books and catalogs about specific programs and preparing for graduate school.

6. Speak directly to admissions coordinators at schools of interest. Websites are helpful but they never tell the full story. Ask questions and make an impression.

One bonus option: Attend this year’s Grad School Fair on Monday, September 29 from 3-5 pm. You’ll be able to accomplish many of the steps listed above and increase your confidence!

~Ashley Michelle

Join Us at the Career + Experience Hub

Posted on September 11, 2014 with No Comments

Career + Experience Hub logo

As our one-year anniversary approaches in October, we reflect on the past year and smile because it was a successful year with visits from various students. Yet as the academic year commences, there are still some students who hesitantly come into the space and ask, “What exactly is the Hub?” To help those who are asking themselves this question, below is a snapshot of what the Hub is and the services we provide.

What is the C+E Hub?

The C+E Hub is a centralized space in the Davis Center where eight experiential learning offices at UVM including; Leadership & Civic Engagement, Office of International Education, Food Systems Internship, Career Center, Student Employment Office, Office of Fellowship Advising, Office of Undergraduate Research, and Office of Community-University Partnership Service Learning, have created a partnership to help students “get started” with experiential opportunities that excite them. Our goal is to promote the 4 Year Plan to all students and send the message that it’s never too early for you to find experiences outside of the classroom. In the end, these experiences will assist with the development of various transferable skills and interests that will be marketable to employers once you leave UVM.

What are the services?

Our partner offices and the Career Center’s Career Peer Mentors are trained to assist students with general questions pertaining to the eight offices. We have career counselors and partner staff available during our Drop-In hours throughout the week to answer students questions such as how to find a job or internship, research, service learning, study abroad, fellowships, or how you can get involved on campus. Last but not least, we hold numerous workshops and events throughout the year that tie into each of those topics.

We hope you will stop by and get started on your next steps and 4 Year Plan for Career Success!

~Danielle

Savvy Seniors: How will YOU define your final year at UVM?

Posted on September 4, 2014 with 1 Comment

Bowl of cherries

“Is life a bowl of cherries?”

There’s a lot of metaphors for what life is and how one chooses to live it. You’ve probably heard everything from the food comparisons (“life is like a box of chocolates” or a bowl of cherries) to the journey descriptions (life is a highway or a marathon).  These descriptions are more than cute sayings, they are worldviews that shape how a person approaches their days and makes decisions.  For example, if life is a marathon, then steady effort day in and day out is required and making it through means to keep putting one foot in front of the other.

It’s important that you think about your own worldview and the metaphors, values and beliefs that guide you if you want to be the captain of your own ship (another great metaphor!)  While that may seem overly lofty, you can break it down to this year: your final year at UVM. How do you envision this year for yourself? You are the only one who can decide how you want to shape this year, what you want from it, and what it means to you.  Your conception of this year will be reflected every day in the choices you make: to study or not, to go out or not, to get good rest or not, to start thinking about your life after college or not.

If you are looking for a roadmap to help guide you through this final year and get you to your next destination, may we recommend the 4 Year Plan for Career Success. Look at the Senior Year of the Plan and start to articulate your vision for this final year. The Plan gives you ideas, suggestions, and benchmarks to help you see the possibilities and identify your own goals.

~Kala

We’d like to help you plan for your final year and life after college.  Join us for:

Careers + Coffee: A Senior Open House Wednesday September 10, 3-5pm at the Career Center L/L E-140.

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