The tools and advice you receive from UMGC Career Services (e.g., individual advising sessions, informational sessions, webinars, and virtual career fairs, etc.) are intended to increase your awareness of the entire careering process and help you increase your professional network. Career development and career exploration are lifetime processes that need to be nurtured and not rushed. UMGC understands this concept which is why they provide lifelong access to CareerQuest to their students and alumni.
Know your Why!
It is important to have a polished resume and a clear, concise cover letter; however, it is also essential that you can communicate your skill sets, qualifications, and reasons you are applying to a specific position to employers. That is, identify which skills and qualifications you currently possess that make you eligible for a position, understand where your skills gaps might be, and brainstorm ways you could reduce any gaps.
Do your Research
Before your interview, identify the reasons why you chose to pursue your specific degree or certifications. Additionally, you may be asked to explain the reasons why you chose to apply for a specific position, or the reasons why you want to work for a specific company. Utilize our SteppingBlocks tool to research the specific career paths taken by UMGC’s students and alumni
Being able to successfully answer these questions will help you stand out in an interview!
Practice, Practice, Practice!
Practice is an integral element of preparing for a job interview. VMock’s tool - Elevator Pitch provides feedback on your interviewing skills based off your body language, gestures, enunciations, and content. Additionally, utilize Candid Career and watch videos to assist you with Virtual, Phone, or In-person interviews preparation along with preparing answers to behavioral-type questions for standing out in a Group interview setting.
If you are a career changer or looking to break into a new field, conduct an Informational Interview with someone in the industry to learn more about specific certifications or skills that you may need. Networking is an on-going activity that can be done both in-person or virtually. Check out InternPlus for opportunities to volunteer, find career launch opportunities, or discover part-time or temporary jobs that can increase your network.
Follow-up with any employers or recruiters that you interact with either at one of UMGC Career Services’ career fairs, webinars, or networking events. Use the list of employers that attend UMGC’s career fair or webinars as a starting point to build or increase your network. Follow these companies on LinkedIn to keep current with their trends and employment opportunities. Continue to monitor UMGC’s Open Positions within CareerQuest. You can research open positions by location, industries, job type, etc., and you have the option to set search alerts.
As always, keep in mind that UMGC Career Services is available to help you plan and achieve career success. Set up an appointment with a UMGC Career Advising Specialist for additional support in your career journey.
Dr. Raelynn F. Grasso is a Career Advising Specialist at the University of Maryland Global Campus. She has experience leading and providing individual, group, and career counseling, as well as executing and developing programs to enhance college student enrichment. Ms. Grasso’s area of research includes career decision-making, epistemic cognition, self-efficacy, and college student development. She holds a B.S. in Psychology from the University of Utah, an M.S. and a PhD in Educational Psychology, both from the University of Nevada, Las Vegas.