Sanger Learning and Career Center: Major, Internships and Your Career

Uploaded by utstudentaffairs on 22.06.2011

>> Student #1: I really like my major, but don't know what careers I can
pursue with it.
>> Career Counselor: The relationship between
majors and careers can be confusing. One helpful thing to understand is that college majors
differ in how much they prepare you for a specific career or industry. There are three
types of college majors:
Career-specific majors, such as teaching certification or nursing, prepare you for
a particular career and may provide on-the-job training during your course of study.
Industry-specific majors, such as radio-television-film or environmental sciences, prepare you for
a variety of careers within a particular industry. Field of Study majors, such as philosophy
or sociology, are majors that are not oriented towards a specific career or industry, but
provide you with broad, transferable skills which could be used in a variety of settings.
While you might not directly apply the information you learned in your field of study to your
chosen career, the skills you develop will carry over to the work world. For example,
a lawyer who majored in English probably won't use their knowledge of Shakespeare on a daily
basis, but the critical thinking that was developed in that field of study will apply
in every instance.
For all majors, but particularly industry-specific and field of study majors, it becomes important
to develop a wide range of skills during your time at college in order to be prepared for
life after graduation. Your major is only one component of what makes you marketable
to employers. >> Student #1: So how do I make myself marketable?
>> Career Counselor: Think of it as if you are packaging yourself for the work world. Your
major alone does not make you marketable. How you complement your major will determine
what career direction you pursue. Those complements might be internships, volunteer opportunities,
undergraduate research, and student organizations. For some of you it might be graduate or professional
school that opens the door to a certain field. >> Student #2: People keep telling me to get
an internship. Why are they so important?
>> Dr. McCarthy:
According to the National
Association of Colleges and Employers, internship programs are listed as the number one place
employers look when recruiting new hires. Internships provide you with valuable
experience and skills that will make you more competitive and marketable in today's job market.
Internships expose you to working in
a professional setting, and may help you develop communication and interpersonal skills necessary
in the workplace
>> Student #1: But don't I have to know what I want to do before I look for an internship?
>> Career Counselor: Not necessarily. An internship can be a great way to test drive a career
option you are considering. For example, a student exploring an interest in advertising
could greatly benefit from an internship at an ad agency even if he or she is still undecided.
In fact, an internship could be instrumental in determining whether the career path is
something they want to pursue. By participating in an internship, the student
could connect with full-time professionals in the field, be exposed to the work environment
of that agency, and develop skills useful in both the advertising world and beyond.
>> Student #3: My internship actually helped me figure out that a career path wasn't
for me. >> Career Counselor: While this experience can
be frustrating, finding out a career isn't right for you while still in college is far
more desirable than discovering this years down the road. For this reason, we encourage
students to begin looking for internships early into their college career, and participate
in multiple internships. Student #2: How do I find an internship?
>> Career Counselor: How you conduct an internship search is very similar to conducting a job
search. There is no one "best" way to look for an internship, so consider using
a variety of approaches. Visit your career service office to gain access to internship
databases and participate in job and internship fairs. Use the internet to research companies
and organizations that appeal to your interests.
Keep in mind that some internships never go posted on a website or database - some opportunities
have not even been created yet. Connect with professionals in your field of interest. Networking
is a great way to find out about internship opportunities right from the source. Don't
know anyone in your field of interest? Likely you know somebody (who knows somebody) who
does. So talk to family, friends, faculty, and colleagues and let them know you are looking
for an internship. Let's review:
1. Most college majors don't
prepare you for one specific career or industry. 2. How you complement your major will determine
what career path you pursue. 3. Internships are a great ways to complement
your major. 4. Use a variety of approaches when looking
for an internship. }