Student and Alumni Resources

Exploring Your Career & Calling

ASPIRE Professional Development Checklist

Our advising model is called ASPIRE. It encourages students to consider professional skills and experiences while enrolled in college.

The checklist includes:

  • attending the majors fair
  • creating a four-year plan
  • using Raven CareerLink
  • creating a resume
  • creating a LinkedIn profile
  • identifying internships, practicums, and volunteering opportunities

View the complete checklist.

Engage in Experiential Opportunities

Many times, students find their career calling through a trial-and-error or experimental process. The sooner you are able to engage in experiential learning and professional opportunities, the better chance you will have of knowing whether or not that career path is a good fit for you personally. Take advantage of as many informational interviews, job shadowing, internship, and relevant work or volunteer experience that you are able to in order to further develop what area of society you would most like to work and impact.

Networking: Utilize LinkedIn, Raven CareerLink, and our vast network of alums to identify and connect with individuals in the industries or fields you are considering. Consider reaching out to your professors, academic advisors, the Alumni office, or the Center for Career and Calling for further assistance.

Mentorship: The Office of Alumni Engagement and Center for Career and Calling have teamed up to put together opportunities for current students to participate in a mentorship program. If you are a student who is interested, contact the Center for Career and Calling.  If an alum, contact the Office of Alumni Engagement.

Informational Interviews: Once you have targeted potential individuals through networking, request to have an informational interview. Communicate who you are and your relation to the individual (i.e. student or alum of Anderson University), your interest in the field, and your desire to learn more about the individual’s personal story or journey. Consider offering to buy him/her a cup of coffee in the process!

Job Shadowing: Visit businesses and organizations that you believe you’d like to work for or in an industry you are considering and/or individuals already working in that field to request a day or more of job shadowing. Again, be ready and able to articulate who you are and what you are hoping to gain by doing this activity.

Volunteer Experiences: Take job shadowing to the next level by offering your gifts and time to help within a company or industry that you are considering pursuing. Try to volunteer on a consistent basis – once a week or even once a month – and utilize the time to not only sharpen your professional skills, but also engage in a variety of activities that you are considering pursuing long-term. This is especially important if your current part-time or full-time work is not in the area you are considering pursuing post-graduation.

Internships & Part-Time Experiences: Try a variety of internship and/or relevant part-time experiences throughout your collegiate career. Internships are a great opportunity to learn first-hand what a particular job or role is within a company as well as trial-run a potential employer. Learn from each experience you participate in by asking yourself these questions:

  • What did I like/dislike about the company? Its culture? Its services? My supervisor? My coworkers?
  • What did I love/hate about the assignments I was given?
  • What activities did I lose track of time while doing?
  • In what career paths or companies could I hone in on the tasks/activities that I most enjoyed?
Job Search Resources

Not sure where to start your search for a job? The links below can help you navigate your way through hundreds of postings.

Once you have a good idea of the type of work you’d like to do, we recommend visiting organizations of interest in person; networking with any of your past supervisors through internships, work, or volunteer work for leads; and/or reaching out to your contacts from church, school, work, and family to begin to let others know you are searching and try to make contact with someone inside the organization. Be sure you can clearly articulate what type of experience you are looking for, what you want to get out of the experience, and what unique value you can contribute to the organization.

REGIONALLY TARGETED:

NATIONAL DATABASES:

NEGOTIATIONS:

Self-Discovery and Assessments
The Center for Career and Calling encourages all students to take an inventory of their values, skills, interests, and personality to help to discover where their true gifts and calling might lie. When researching options for a career or vocational path, students should consider self-knowledge, recognizable gifts and talents, and moments of opportunity surrounding them.

Career Advisors are happy to meet with students for career counseling and exploration appointments. Before scheduling an appointment, it is advised that students take the Focus2 and StrengthsFinder assessments.

Strong Interest Inventory:  The Strong Interest Inventory® assessment provides insight into a person’s interests to help them consider potential careers, educational paths, and the world of work. Built on psychologist John Holland’s theory, it’s backed by more than 80 years of research into how people of similar interests are employed, and what motivates individuals in the workplace. The Strong assessment helps students uncover their career interests and identify which areas of study are appropriate or required for a particular field and heightens people’s self-awareness to provide deeper understanding of individual interests, strengths, and blind spots. All students have free access to taking the Strong Interest Inventory but must meet with a certified administrator in order to go over results. To take the Strong, email the Center for Career & Calling for online access and to schedule an appointment with a career advisor.   (Sources: www.cpp.com)

StrengthsFinder 2.0: Almost all Anderson University freshmen are required to take the StrengthsFinder 2.0 assessment through their LART 1050 (First Year Experience Seminar) course. Through StrengthsFinder, you will gain valuable insight into areas of your greatest potential, uncover your talents, and discover strategies for developing and applying your strengths. To further dive in to your StrengthsFinder results, contact the Center for Career & Calling to speak with a career advisor.

MBTI (Myers-Briggs Type Indicator): Although there are a variety of free resources claiming to produce a MBTI 4-letter type code, it is recommended that students interested in a valid and reliable result should utilize an officially administered and interpreted MBTI assessment. There are a few options regarding cost, so if you would like to pursue this route, please contact the Center for Career and Calling to begin the process and schedule an appointment with a career advisor.

LART 1200, Career & Life Planning: This one-credit course addresses the role of decision-making skills in choosing a college major. Students assess interests, personality, skills, and values to assist them in finding the “best fit” among the majors and career options they are researching. Students also learn effective problem-solving skills that can be used over a lifetime for career and life-planning decisions.

Research Majors & Careers

After walking through the self-discovery process, it is encouraged for students to do further research on potential fits for their major and future career. Consider going through the list of majors offered at Anderson University and crossing out definite “no’s” and highlighting potential “yes’s”.

Below are some resources to take advantage of when deciding on a major and how it could fit into your career path. Once you have done some research, consider scheduling an appointment with a career advisor.

Application & Interview Resources

There are a variety of resources available to you to best prepare for an upcoming interview. Go through the below resources for general tips and guidelines, browse through your Raven CareerLink account and search for its interview podcasts, utilize online video mock interview programs like the free ones referenced below, and most importantly, schedule a mock interview with one of the staff members in the Center for Career and Calling.

Interviewing Tips & Resources

My Interview Simulator: This site allows you to simulate a mock interview with over 100 questions organized in categories and sets. This system doesn’t record your responses, but does feature audio prompts along with text-based tips for responding to each question and examples. (Note: this one requires Flash.)

Monster.com Interviews: Just one of the many mobile apps available, this one from Monster is for iPhones and iPads. Features of this tool are presented in a before, during, and after approach, and include: recording your answers to practice questions, turning your device into a mirror for a last minute check, finding local resources like coffee shops near your interview location, and documenting your thoughts immediately after the interview.

Interview4.me: As a job seeker you can sign up for a free account to access this online practice interviewing system. With your computer’s webcam and microphone you can record your responses to five typical interview questions presented by the software. This site also features a 60-second video introduction format that you can record, save, and share on your social networking profiles.

Quizlet: This site offers sets of online flashcards covering a range of topics, including job interviews. In addition to question prompts, you’ll also find tips to help you frame your responses. Check out the behavioral interviews set using the STAR approach: Simulation or Task, Action you took, Results.

Schedule a mock interview with Career and Calling

Résumé Resources & Examples

Before beginning to write any résumé, be sure you have the job posting or job description in front of you! Each resume should be tailored specifically to the job in which you are applying – you should not have a “one-size-fits-all” attitude when it comes to finding and landing the perfect position.

You can start by creating a “dump document” – this will help you in the process of tailoring each résumé to the job. Save a text-based document (Word or other) on your desktop and continually update it with the main areas of a résumé:

  • Your current contact information
  • Links to any online professional presence or portfolios of work
  • A bulleted list of your most marketable skills/qualifications
  • A bulleted list of your technical skills: software systems, databases, applications, and/or languages plus your proficiency levels
  • Education information: institution(s), location(s), anticipated graduation date(s), degree type (i.e. Bachelor of Arts, Master’s of Business Administration, etc), GPA if above a 3.0, etc
  • A bulleted list of relevant courses, independent study projects, research papers, etc.
  • Listing of all of your paid and unpaid professional, general,  internship, and volunteer experiences
  • Listing of all of your extra-curricular activities (i.e. social clubs, service clubs, collegiate athletics, intramurals, student leadership positions, etc)
  • Professional memberships, certifications, conferences, etc.

*Remember to continually update this document with every new project, experience, and skill you gain!

In order to tailor your résumé, you must conduct an audit of your qualifications for the position. Pull up the job description and/or job posting for which you are applying and take the following steps:

  1. Underline all keywords utilized in the job posting that indicate required and preferred skills or qualifications.
  2. Go back through and highlight any of the underlined keywords that you believe you readily possess.
  3. Identify the top five skills you can quantify or qualify with past experience and/or accomplishments.
  4. For each of these five keywords, list out specific accomplishments within your past experiences that demonstrate your competency and be sure to highlight this in your résumé.

After you’ve conducted a professional audit of yourself for the position, begin to craft your résumé. Here are some templates, resources, and samples for you to download and utilize.

Have Your Résumé Reviewed

Once you have a great starting point based on the guidelines provided, log on to your Raven CareerLink account and upload your résumé via the “My Documents” section on your dashboard. Your uploaded document will automatically be sent to the Center for Career and Calling and should be reviewed within 3-5 business days. The CCC reviews résumés, C.V.s, cover letters, application essay question answers, personal statements, and more.

If you prefer, you can drop in at the Center for Career and Calling on Monday, Wednesday, or Friday from 10 a.m. – 1p.m. or Tuesday, Thursday from noon – 3 p.m.

Graduate School & The C.V.

Before beginning to write your curriculum vitae (C.V.), be sure you have the graduate program description, application requirements, and core values in front of you! Your C.V. should be tailored specifically to the program in which you are applying.

Similar to a résumé, you can start by creating a dump document – this will help you in the process of tailoring your application materials. Save a text-based document (Word or other) on your desktop and continually update it with the main areas of a curriculum vitae:

  • Your current contact information
  • Links to any online professional presence or portfolios of work
  • Bulleted list of your most marketable skills/qualifications
  • Bulleted list of your technical skills: software systems, databases, applications, and/or languages plus your proficiency levels
  • Education information: institution(s), location(s), anticipated graduation date(s), degree type (i.e. Bachelor of Arts, Master’s of Business Administration, etc), GPA if above a 3.0
  • Awards and honors
  • Testing scores (i.e. GRE, LSAT, GMAT, MAT, etc)
  • Bulleted list of relevant courses, independent study projects, research papers and presentations, and any other educationally relevant items
  • Listing of all of your paid and unpaid professional, practicum, internship, work, and/or volunteer experiences
  • Listing of all of your extra-curricular activities (i.e. social clubs, service clubs, collegiate athletics, intramurals, student leadership positions, etc)
  • Professional memberships, certifications, conferences, etc.

Once you have a dump document created, begin to search through the description and website of the graduate program(s) for which you are applying. Highlight core values that they hold (and you share), qualifications that they seek in candidates, unique program attributes, and more to best tailor your curriculum vitae to fit their need. Find a template that best suits you, and work from there. Below are some additional tips and templates.

C.V. Templates and Resources:

You also will likely be required to submit a personal statement. Below are resources and tips for crafting the perfect personal statement.

Personal Statement Resources: