Career Management

What do you think of when you hear the words ‘job search?’

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Me too. But knowing how to job search is an integral part of getting a job. The most important aspects to navigate career management are self evaluation, strong resumes, clear cover letters, company research and nailing the interview.  

Self Evaluation. The first part of any job search is to evaluate yourself. By completing this step first, you are able to find a position that would fit you well, not just one that you would fit into. Make sure to look at your career goals, current skills and which company culture you are successful in. For example, maybe you are someone who works better without free-muffins-everyday distractions, or maybe you think that any workplace where you have to bring your own muffin is cold and lonely; therefore, you aren’t motivated to work. Figure this out now because it’s much easier and more natural to find a place where you fit rather than trying to fit a square peg in a round hole.

Resume. The next step is having a killer resume. This one or two page document has to express how perfect you are in under 30 seconds 😱. Does your resume pass the blink rule?

There are essentially two parts of a resume: design and content. Keep in mind that these are both dependent on each field and industry. For more information, talk to working professionals, professors or consult our website.

Cover Letter.


As the bane of anyone’s job search, cover letters get a bad rap. However, without one, you are doing yourself a disservice. Putting in the time to write a cover letter (that is grammatically correct and addressed to the right company) shows your interest in the company and the position. Here’s a quick template to get you started. Make sure that you don’t send the same cover letter to every company. Tailor your cover letter and resume to a specific job and company and remember–flattery goes a long way, but desperation is off-putting.

Research. Hopefully, you would have already done some research on the company to customize your application materials. In the case of an interview (phone included), more research is necessary. By picking up on interesting facets of a business or following social media feeds, you are able to show the employer that you are dedicated and actually care about their company and its success. There’s no one way to do this, but in a pinch, this is what you should be looking for.

Actual Interview(!).  Getting an interview is impressive. Now is the chance to show an employer your personality. At this point, they’ve had plenty of time to study your resume. Tell them about outcomes, growth, goals. Being personable and confident is key. Nervous? Get your power pose on. Behavioral Interviewing is the norm, which means employers are not only looking to see what experience you’ve had, but also how you handle situations. Go in prepared with situations that illustrate the following points: teamwork, leadership, handling conflict, problem solving and any other transferable skills you may have.

Get the Job. 💪

For help in perfecting your Career Management, check out the Career Management dimension of CAP.

Career Maturity

Students often fail to take the time to ask themselves why they are doing what they’re doing; why they’re working so hard and spending so much money to pursue a degree that they may or may not actually be interested in. This is a significant problem, as graduation comes much too quickly, and students are often clueless as to where to go next. So how can this be combatted? It all starts with individuals knowing themselves well, what they enjoy about their chosen major, and where it can take them moving forward.


Self-knowledge: What are your strengths? What could use improvement? What is a specific cause or leisure activity that you would drop everything for? Are you a listener? Problem solver? Are you creative or adaptable? It’s easy to forget these qualities about ourselves, as well as what we can bring to the table. We all have something unique to offer, but it often takes reflection on what those things are to pursue them further.


Occupational Knowledge: After diving into your skills, interests, values and personality, what occupations do you see would suit you best? Do some research on what is available, and discover all of your options. This is where the Focus assessment comes in handy, as it is targeted toward students or post grads seeking work that they will both excel in and thoroughly enjoy. Check out the Strong Interest Inventory and Do What You Are tests as well to discover where your strengths lie and how you can use them to improve communities.


Forward Momentum: Talk is cheap. We can discuss our dreams and future plans for years and never actually achieve them. Set up an action plan on how you will get there, include measurable goals, and be prepared to encounter obstacles. Enjoy where you’re at, but always look ahead to where you want to be. Plan in decades, think in years, work in months, live in days.
Find out if you are an organizer, a thinker, a doer, a helper or a combination. Discover your work and leisure interest careers and what the job market looks like for those. Reevaluate your values and how they align with both your day-to-day activities and your future plans. The CAP Career Maturity Module will encourage students to chase an engaging and meaningful career.