Career Action Plan
Explore | Prepare | Participate
Planning for after college can be intimidating. The Career Action Plan will lead you step-by-step to help you explore your career options, prepare your materials and develop your skills, and participate in the actions needed to reach your goals. Following the Career Action Steps will keep you moving toward your goals! Your career starts now.
Rewarding careers do not happen by accident. Be intentional about using your time at NC State to think critically about what a rewarding career means to you and what you need to do to achieve that goal.
Explore yourself and your options
- Explore your interests, skills, and values through participation in the Career Identity Program.
- Take the Focus2 Career Assessment to learn about potential career options.
- Find your support on campus by scheduling an appointment with your career counselor via ePACK. Consider enrolling in Career Exploration (USC 202).
- Research career options by using digital tools such as the Occupational Outlook Handbook, and O*Net Online. Review potential jobs on ePACK, CareerShift (accessible through ePACK) and/or LinkedIn.
- Set up informational interviews with professionals in careers of interest to learn more about the field. Connect with NC State alumni via the “Alumni Search Tool” on LinkedIn.
- Attend career fairs on campus to explore career options and familiarize yourself with how to network with professionals.
- Assess career goals and research to determine if graduate or professional school will be necessary.
Visit the Career Development Center website (careers.ncsu.edu) to learn more about job search tools and to access resources
Prepare your materials and develop your skills
- Prepare a targeted résumé and cover letter using the Career Guide. Have each reviewed by your Career Counselor.
- Join student or community organizations that match your personal and/or professional interests; take on leadership roles.
- Participate in a mock interview with your Career Counselor and/or Mock Interview Day held in the fall and spring.
- Create/update your LinkedIn profile using the Career Guide and use industry professionals’ profiles as a reference.
- Identify at least 3 professionals to serve as a reference for you when applying to internships, co-ops, jobs, or graduate school.
- Research graduate/professional schools of interest. Check admission requirements and schedule the appropriate entrance exam (GRE, MCAT, LSAT, etc.).
Review the skills (Career Guide, pg 11) employers want and think about how you will gain these skills.
Participate and take action to reach your goals
- Attend career fairs, employer information sessions, and other career events to learn about opportunities.
- Use ePACK, CareerShift, and LinkedIn to apply to internships, co-ops, and part-time jobs or apply to undergraduate research, alternative service break, study abroad, teaching assistant positions, etc. to gain hands-on experience prior to graduation.
- Network and connect with alumni using NC State’s “Ask the Pack” tool and/or the “Alumni Search Tool” on LinkedIn.
- Prepare for negotiations by conducting salary research and evaluating personal budgetary needs.
- Apply for opportunities and track all applications for employment and graduate school.
Check-in with your career counselor to track your goals and use drop-in hours to have your resume critiqued.