Senior Year Four-Year Career Action Plan
Now you have developed the skills, experiences, and tools necessary to transition from college into the workplace or graduate school. Your use of the career services center goes into high gear. It is time to put on the professional polish that impresses employers and admissions counselors. As you graduate, you are ready achieve your career goals with purpose, direction, and success.
- Meet with the Career Services Counselor to Plan Your Senior Year Strategy
The office of career services can assist you in completing your résumé, setting up an internship, providing resources for career exploration and graduate school selection, and equip you with all the information you need to make the most of your last year at Bridgewater College. Set up regular appointments with the career services counselor throughout the year to make sure you are on track. Receive your job search handbook. Use all of the career services resources available to you.
- Start Your Job Search Through Bridgewater's Career Services Center
Get connected to jobs and great career information through Bridgewater's career services center. Identify and target employment opportunities through the various listings available to you. Interface directly with employers, post your résumé online, and enjoy access to employers who are interested in hiring the Bridgewater graduate. A great way to manage your job search and get connected to employers who want to connect with you. A job search is a full time job in itself. To be successful, you need a plan of attack. The career services counselor will help you set up a plan for consistently sending out resumes, organizing and tracking job search progress, networking for job leads and contacts, providing resources, and guiding you through the process so that you have a focused and successful job search experience.
- Network with On-Campus Recruiters and Participate in Job and Career Fairs
Now is the time to take advantage of the connections you make while on campus. Check the calendar of events regularly for on-campus recruiting visits, job and career fairs, and other networking opportunities. Be prepared to hand out a great résumé for marketing yourself.
- Perfect Your Résumé and Cover Letter
There are many resources available to help you develop a resume that will get you noticed by the employer. Work one-on-one with the career services counselor to personalize your presentation. Check out our online résumés and cover letters section, visit our career resources center library, and take advantage of our résumé workshops. Check the calendar of events for dates and times. Your résumé is the key to getting your foot in the door.
- Participate in an Internship and/or Study Abroad Programs
Employers and grad schools want to see hands-on experience from serious-minded career seekers. The competition for jobs and for acceptance into a grad school program can be vigorous. Internships allow you to observe your career choice in action, gain hands-on experience, and network with professionals in your chosen field. They ease the transition from school to workplace, look great on a résumé, help develop professional references, and provide the edge to compete for jobs or entrance into graduate school programs. Study Abroad programs provide you with experience like no other. They boost self-confidence, impact world view, influence cultural interaction, ignite interest in a career direction, and develop a global perspective beneficial to the job market of today.
- Perfect Your Interview and Communication Skills
Strong communication skills are key to success in the interview. Make opportunities to practice and hone your skills by participating in mock interviews, conducting informational interviews, making speeches, participating in class discussions, and taking on leadership roles in clubs and organizations. Your written communication skills are critical as well. Practice writing cover letters, refer to business writing manuals, and seek second opinions from the career service counselor, an English professor, or a professional in the field.
- Perfect Your Interview Wardrobe
First impressions are lasting impressions. High on the list of complaints by employers is that people don't know how to dress for interviews anymore. Develop an outfit that is professional, appropriate for the position, and tells employers you are serious. Remember: You are dressing to impress persons in positions of authority, not your peers.
- Complete the Admissions Process for Graduate School
If you are thinking about attending graduate school it is important to have an understanding of the rigors of the program, the application process, expectations for entrance, timelines, required admission tests, competition for admittance, and expected outcomes. There is a great deal of information available on graduate school programs available through the graduate school information link as well as the career resource center.
- Complete Your Career Portfolio
Your portfolio should include your résumé, sample cover letter, list of references, internships, offices and titles, class projects, extracurricular activities, awards, acknowledgements, service-learning experiences, and other related information. In your senior year, organize your formal presentation in a format that you think will impress an employer or admissions counselor.
- Represent Yourself as an Outstanding Liberal Arts Graduate
Employers are interested in hiring liberal arts students because they open their minds to new concepts. They explore the world around them. They are conscious of how they fit into their environment. They are critical thinkers. They are flexible in thought and action. They think globally. They are idea generators. They are problem solvers. They are team players. They are future leaders. Make the most of your experience here at Bridgewater College and become an exceptional liberal arts student and graduate.
- Stay active in leadership roles with clubs and organizations
- Develop relationships with professors, upper class students and alumni
- Participate in activities that give you more insight into your career choice
- Concentrate on studies and keep grades high
- Keep a healthy balance between your social life and academic life