November is National Career Development Month, and it’s a great time to start exploring the cosmos thinking about life after Puget Sound!

For most people, figuring out what you want to do with your life is a complicated subject. For college students in particular, facing a million other competing must-do tasks to complete your degrees, the process can be overwhelming.

But it doesn’t have to be. Just take small steps!

When you boil the process down to its simplest form, career development consists of three steps: self-assessment, exploration, and action. Whether you just arrived at Puget Sound this fall, or you’re a super-senior eyeing a December graduation, those three steps can be manageable.

Here are a few easy activities in each category.

Who are you?  What do you want out of life? Assess your talents and interests so you can identify career fields that might be a good match:

  • Inventory your experiences—work, volunteer, travel, club, etc. Reflect on the good and bad, and what you’d like to do again.
  • Identify your strengths. What are you good at? Ask friends, family, supervisors, coaches, faculty, etc. for their input. In a way, this is networking, so it’s good practice for that, too!
  • Consider taking formal personality or interest assessments to jump start your thinking about career options.

What’s possible? What’s attainable? Explore options:

You’ve assessed and explored. Now it’s time to take action! Prepare for a successful job or internship search:

Ready to take a step? Schedule a meeting with a CES career advisor to develop personalized career development strategies. We’ll help you prepare for the leap to life beyond Puget Sound!

Image from NASA
© 2010 Career and Employment Services, University of Puget Sound (Updated 2017)