Where do I start?
The Path to Career Success / CQs
Right where you are - it's never too soon OR too late to work on career prep. Figure out your next step with our Path to Career Success - a useful compilation of tools to support your career development from day one through graduation, and beyond...
Career Interest Group/s
No matter what you're trying to accomplish, joining an Interest Group(s) is a great place to start! These virtual communities open doors to new connections (peers, alums, faculty & staff), opportunities (jobs, internships & more), useful resources (e.g., programs, how to guides), and priceless insights (from those in the field).
- There are no obligations - come and go as you please - join as many groups as you'd like (one simple form allows you to leave or change groups).
- Each Interest Group sends out regular newsletters - to ensure you're the first to know about things of interest!
- See others in the group and join virtual chats through UVMConnect.
With a mission to democratize opportunity, Handshake more than just a job and internship database. The leading career platform for college students, Handshake is used by 1,400+ colleges/universities, 650K employers and 9+ million students.
- Log in with your netID & password to complete your Career Interest Survey - info used to customize your homepage allowing you to discover unexpected opportunities,
- Complete your profile - a virtual resume - so that employers can find you,
- Create & save custom searches (with your desired filters) to get notified of opportunities (jobs/internships/events) you care about.
It doesn't really matter what you do - as long as you do it!
It takes experience to gain experience - so start building your experience today:
- Part-time, seasonal & on-campus jobs are a great starting point (even if they're not glamorous, they're great ways to develop "transferable" skills)
- Volunteer/Service opportunities build your resume and strengthen your community!
- Plan to take a Community-Engaged Learning class and earn credit while making a difference through hands on learning
- Engage with a student club and consider pursuing a leadership role (i.e., captain, secretary, president)
- Projects are another great starting point - ask around, you never know who might have a project they need help with
- Plan to do an Internship or Micro-internship
- Explore Study Abroad programs to expand your worldview & increase your multicultural compentecies
- Undergraduate Research and Fellowships are more great avenues to build skills and make great connections
Not sure what to do?
I need to prepare...
Your resume is how you present yourself (your skills, experiences and competencies) to prospective employers. Whether you're applying to a part-time job, a prestigious fellowship, or anything in between, you'll need an effective resume. Crafting your document is an art, and also a great reflection on all the skills/experience you already have! Here are some resources to get you started:
- Check out our Guide to Resumes
- Bring your draft to Drop-In hours
- Submit your document for a virtual review via BlackBoard (students) or via Handshake (alums)
- Review your Career Competencies to identify skills to add to your resume - be sure to show (don't just tell) when/where you've developed those skills (i.e., don't just list the skills, rather, include them in your descriptive bullet points for specific experiences).
A Cover Letter
An essential companion to your resume, a compeling cover letter helps set you apart from the other applicants. While one resume can be used for many applications, each cover letter is unique and specific to the opportunity at hand - conveying why you want to do this thing, with these people. Having someone proof-read your letter is beyond smart - awkward sentances and typos do not make a good first impression.... More useful tips can be found in:
- Your Guide to Cover Letters
- Submit your document for virtual feedback: Students submit to BlackBoard / alums submit via Handshake
- Bring your draft to drop-in hours to get feedback on the spot!
- Have your friends, parents/guardians, mentors/coaches take a look - the more feedback the better. Then take what resonnates and leave what doesn't - at the end of the day the cover letter should reflect a professional and capable you!
an Online Profile (e.g., LinkedIn)
Bring your story to life with visual content and dynamic links - a well built LinkedIn profile is a great way to be more than just a list of skills. It allows you to add value that doesn't fit on a one page resume, and to leverage the platform to connect with others! Curating an online profile also enables you to direct prospective employers to a professional you and not leave them to find whatever a Google search might bring up!
Pro Tip: An effective headline becomes your "objective" - while a sentence on your resume about your aspirations is no longer in vogue - prospective employers are looking at your headline to understand who you see yourself as/becoming. In tandem with your headline, a concise and impactful summary is key. This section holds prime real estate on your page - use it well to quickly highlight what sets you apart & hook a potential employer to want to read on.
my CV (Curriculum Vitae)
YourCurriculum Vitae (CV) is an extensive record of your academic and professional achievements. You will likely only need a CV if you are applying to academic or research positions. A CV is much more detailed than a resume and has some key differences. The resources below will help you get started:
for an Interview
Landing an interview is a huge accomplishment in itself - congratulations! Set yourself apart by showing up well prepared. Not sure where to start? We've got you!
- Guide to Interviewing & Common Interview Questions – practice makes a world of difference
- Candid Career – Watch short interviews with various professionals sharing advice
- Visit our BlackBoard site for our guide to Virtual Interviews, Case Interviews and Technical Interviews
- Schedule a Mock Interview with a Career Specialist (did we mention practicing?!)
How do I find...
Whether you're trying to pay the bills, fund your fun, or build your resume, a part-time job is a great idea! Meet new people and develop invaluable transferable skills! You'll be surprised how well your customer service skills will serve you in whatever career you pursue - no joke! Work experience, all work experience, makes you more "employable" (i.e., a step closer to that dream job).
- Check out the Part-time Jobs Fair (every September) - in addition to the career fairs each semester: Upcoming Fairs.
- Find on-campus and work-study jobs through The Student Employment Office.
- Search Handshake using its robust filters to narrow your search to what works for YOU.
- Look for part-time jobs in Seven Days and the Burlington Free Press.
Students who intern earn higher starting salaries and report higher levels of job satisfaction. In short, interning is a great idea! Experiences gained through volunteer or service work, student clubs/orgs or identity centers, or even part-time work (workstudy totally counts!) can prove useful in landing a desirable internship.
Full-time (post grad) Jobs
Whether you're about to graduate (congratulations!) or are just planning for the future, we encourage you to check out all of the different ways you can search for job openings.
I know what I'm looking for:
- Our Job Search & Prep Guides offer useful tips and a handy check list to organize and optimize your job search.
- Take note on how to Identify Fraudulent jobs and internships and avoid scams!
- Visit our Identity-based Resources for identity-based resources & tips.
- Create & save searches in Handshake - and every other job database you can find. Cast your net far & wide!
- Attend a Career Fair to connect with recruiters and get noticed
- Build a LinkedIn profile to engage with professionals, search jobs and find alums. Find tips in our BlackBoard course.
- UVM Connect – Network with UVM alums, students and faculty. Check out our guide to Networking too!
- GoinGlobal – Search jobs worldwide (access via Handshake)
I'm not sure what I'm looking for:
Graduate & Professional Programs
Depending on your career goals, pursuing graduate or professional school might be a good next step for you. These resources can help you determine if grad school is right for you - most programs require no small committee of time and money! As well, they cover offer useful tips on how to prepare yourself as a competetive candidate, where to search, and how to navigate the application process.
- General tips for Graduate & Professional programs
- Pre-Law Resources
- Pre-Med/Pre-Dent website - be sure to consider the myriad of paths in health care!
I'm trying to decide...
on a major
Choosing a major can feel scary, but remember (contrary to popular misconception) - your major does NOT define you or your future!
- Check out our Choosing or Changing A Major page
- Stop by for a playful 15-minute "Card Sort" activity to narrow down the options & then meet with a Career Specialist to discuss your findings
- Visit our Blackboard site and select the Majors & Minors module for 5 useful tips
- Ask around - what are your peers studying & why?
- Join the Exploring Interest Group for a regular newsletter full of useful insights.
what I want to do / be when I grow up...
Great question - and one we spend our entire lives answering and revising! You don't need all the answers today - you only need a next step. Which would you find most helpful?
Reflecting on such topics is well worth the time invested, as understanding these things about yourself is really key to finding meaningful and rewarding work!
- Visit our Blackboard site and select our Interests & Values Module to reflect on what's most important to you.
Talking with someone
Don't be shy about asking people what they do, how they got there and if they like - most folks love talking about themselves!
- Drop by the Career Center to find out more about the resources we can offer
- Make an appointment with your Academic Advisor for their perspectives and tips
- Do some Informational Interviews to find out about the paths others have taken (you can interview ANYONE from mom to an alum you found on LinkedIn - and you never know what you'll discover as interests or possibilities through those conversations)
- Job Shadowing is a great ways to see what kinds of jobs you might like, or not – hang out with a professional for a day and see what "a day in the life" is really like
- Join Career Interest Groups to explore what others are doing / have done through this virtual network, events and newsletter curated around fields of general interest
- Watch Candid Career videos – of various professionals sharing what their jobs are like (+ advice on how to get there)
- Occupational Outlook Handbook – Explore different occupations and their associated pay and education requirements.
- Search O*NET for detailed industry information such as projected growth in that field and required skills
What I should be working on
Looking to feel more "employable"? Check out these 8 Career Competencies that employers across the nation are seeking. Research done by The National Association of Colleges and Employers identified 8 competencies that employers across all industries and across the nation are looking for.
- Our Career Readiness Survey will walk you through a self assessment these competencies and help you set goals to further develop them.
Identity-Based Resources for...
Job Seekers with marginalized identities
Job searching is hard for everyone, and harder still for those who might face discrimination or microagressions based on their identities. We're here to empathize any time you need validation.
We're also here to help you navigate these waters and own how your identities bring distinct strengths to the workplace!
Check out our Identity-Based Resource page for tips on finding a mentor, developing a network, & assessing an organizations commitmtnet to DEI work. Or jump to specfic resources related to your identities:
- People of Color | Navigating Anti-blackness in the job search
- LGBTQIA+ | FAQ for Trans job seekers
- First Gen @UVM
- International Students
- People with Disabilities
And you can always drop-by to talk with a Peer Leader, or request an appointment with a Career Coach.
Congratulations on getting ready to graduate! Check out our Winter Career Boost to kickstart your job searching skills. Have more specific questions? Look at the other FAQs and check out the resources below:
- Our Job Search Guide gives you the basics of how to run a successful job search.
- Interested in grad school? Check out our Graduate & Professional School guide to get started and plan out your next move.
- This is the perfect time to be networking. Employers look to graduating classes to fill tons of positions, and most of your classmates will be looking to enter the workforce. Check out our Guide to Networking to get started!
Who can I connect with?
Build a professional network
Networking is just a fancy word for making connections. Something you do everyday! Your network includes your roommates, classmates, teammates, faculty, coaches, mentors, and even your family & family friends. Start curating your network with tools like UVM Connect and LinkedIn to establish virtual connections with these folks so you can easily communicate with them. Whether you're letting them know that you're looking for opportunities or just sharing updates, you never know when these folks may just have the idea, advice, or connection you need!
- Learn more on our networking page
- Join a ready-made virtual network: Career Interest Group enable you connect with others around shared interests (with no obligations)
- Connect with others through student clubs/orgs, identity centers, volutneer work, & more...
- If you haven't yet - take the CQ (Career Quiz) for your year to make sure you're on track to graduate well connected & career ready!
You got this - networking is essential but it's nowhere near as hard as you think...
Meet others through hands-on learning
Gaining experience through internships, community-engaged learning, research, study abroad and other great experiential opportunities is great for your resume and also a great way to connect with people doing the kind of work you might be interest in.
- Learn more on our Experential Learning page
Chat with alums
UVMConnect is our exclusive online community for UVM students, alums, and friends. Log in today to find folks "willing to help" you. Alums love sharing their stories, their wisdom and their general career advice. Once you log in, join a Career Interest Group on the platform to find your people and see what folks are talking about...