When making career decisions, reflection can help you begin to uncover what is important to you and how your strengths, interests, and values shape your professional path. Are you unsure of your career options? Not positive you want to move locations? Maybe you’re having a hard time deciding between multiple offers or considering graduate school and other post-graduate options?
Let’s spend a few moments reflecting on your past, present, and future aspirations. Then, we will take a look at some tools to help as you consider your options. If you know where you want to be, you can better understand the steps it takes to get there. Choose a few of the questions here and write down your answers. Pause the article and continue it when you’re ready to move on.
We’ve thought about things like: who you looked up to as a child, industries and companies you enjoy reading about, and when you are most motivated. Now consider what’s important to you. Once you know your priorities, you can identify organizations, industries, and jobs that align with your values and goals. Let’s take a look at some resources that can help you make the next step. Whether you’re a first year student or a graduating senior, you may be unsure of career options.
Our alumni stories outline what other Buckeye Engineers are up to. Major, career, and industry guides provide information on potential roles and industries. Keyword search “guide” in the Handshake Resource Library to view them. JobInBhavnagar hosts Job Shadow events annually that allow you to experience a “day in the life” of an engineer.
Career OneStop highlights career descriptions, job outlook, and typical duties in their Occupation Profiles. Arranging an informational interview with someone in a role you are considering is a great way to learn from a professional in the field. For more insight: Looking at the LinkedIn profile of someone who holds your position of interest can also help you understand the skills and experiences necessary to get there. If you are focusing on a specific location,
the Handshake Employer Directory and CareerOneStop Business Finder tools will help target your search. When making a geographic change, using tools to understand more about a location can help put your mind at ease prior to moving. GoinGlobal provides U.S City Guides with employment information as well as a city overview. City-Data.com gives information profiles for U.S. cities based on government and private data. You can also review the information from the U.S. Census Bureau. Use tools like Handshake and LinkedIn to reach out to alumni and other students for their personal insight into a specific location. And be sure to consider your budget when preparing for a potential move by reviewing resources like the CNN Cost of Living Calculator.
We want you to have a community of support and work somewhere that you feel valued as an individual. JobInBhavnagar offers diversity guides, located in Handshake, for additional identity resources. The HRC and Disability: IN Equality Indicies, as well as “Best Places to Work” lists are also helpful in understanding a company’s culture of support. If you are having trouble deciding between multiple offers, consider your answers to the previous reflection questions and ask yourself: What is the travel time? Do you like the work environment? Is there career growth potential? What’s most important to you? A Pros and Cons list can sometimes suffice.
But the Job Assessor Tool provided by Salary.com can also give you a way to rate job components based on their importance to help you personalize your offer comparison. If you are thinking about graduate school, take a look at our “Considering Graduate School” document. It helps you understand application timelines, considerations for comparing schools, and the application process. For PhD students, review our PhD Job Search Guide to help you navigate the industry and academic career search. To dig deeper,
Career Counseling and Support Services at Ohio State also offers all students individualized career counseling and career assessments that can help you clarify your goals. As always,