The Career Center at CSU

http://www.career.colostate.edu/Students

Career Center

The Career Center at CSU is a very basic website designed to help current students and alumni achieve their career goals. There are also links for faculty, employers and family though these destinations primarily encourage individuals to call or otherwise contact the Career Center directly.

Mostly geared towards current students, the website advertises multiple services and resources to aid students in their professional planning and goals. Excluding the “Students Home” page there are only 5 topics listed in the left menu column, Major and Career Exploration, Job and Internship Search, Fairs and Events, Graduate School, and HIRED  .

Examples listed under the “Students” section: Individual Career Counseling appointments, Personality and Career Assessments, Career and Major Exploration tools, Resume / Cover Letter / Personal Statement development, Interviewing Skill development and Practice Interviews, Job and Internship Search Strategies, Job and Internship postings on CareerRAM, Career Interviews, and multiple Career Fairs every year.

Under the Graduate School link within the “Students” category, there’s quite a bit of information listed pertaining to what to expect if you’re considering pursuing a graduate degree. Much of the information is pretty basic, generic even, but there are some useful links, Petersons.com for grants and scholarships and http://www.career.colostate.edu/Downloads/GradSchoolPacket.pdf links to a CSU created pdf talking about whether or not Grad school is the right choice for you.

Within the Job and Internship Search tab there are links to CSU career workshops and a link to set up an appointment with a Career Center advisor. In addition to the following categories: CareerRAM – Jobs/Internships, Job Searching Tips, Internship Resources, Resumes and Other Documents, Interviewing, Interview Attire Fund, Networking and Social Media, Working/Studying Abroad, Additional Resources.

Under the “Job and Internship Search” category, students are encouraged to log in/utilize “CareerRAM”, the Career Center’s online recruiting system through which students can narrow search terms to include their major, geographic location preferences and other criteria. I was especially hopeful when vetting this feature but was ultimately disappointed when search results turned up such gems as: Marriott attendant, Denver car wash manager, sales associate at Black House, White Market, among others. On the opposite end of the spectrum there were numerous listings for IT specialists, one for Cropping Systems Agronomist (an expert in soil management and field-crop production, in case you didn’t know – seriously what kid dreams of becoming an agronomist? The kids that ate dirt during recess?!?). My rambling point here is that there doesn’t seem to be a whole lot of job listings that call for a bachelor’s degree AND require less than 5 to 7 years of experience. It just doesn’t seem terribly realistic to me for employers to post jobs via a college database with such grandiose expectations. This isn’t necessarily a knock against CSU, so much as what is probably a depressing insight to the current job market. The idea that I’m thousands of dollars in debt just to get a job as Bulk Tank Driver for the Dairy Farmers of America (in Greeley) is not exactly reassuring.

There are several more features buried in this poorly designed site that I’ll be digging out for future use in my long form webtext. But for those of you looking ahead, be patient (alcohol is suggested), do some digging, and you may just find some very useful answers to questions you didn’t even know to be asking.

A Narrowed Direction: Colorado State Career Resources

Given my intended project for the end of this semester, I’ve decided to do a few blog posts pursuant with this ultimate goal. My goal is a comprehensive compilation of all (or at least the best) resources available to students through Colorado State University.  I’ll be using this week’s blog post to discuss some of the websites various departments at CSU have put together that pertain to careers.

First up: http://biz.colostate.edu/careers/Pages/resources.aspx#SelfCareerMajor

Career Resource Library Full Size

Located through the Business School, this link provides a wealth of information under the following categories:

Self, Career, & Major Exploration

This is probably my favorite of the categories in this list. Here you’ll find 4 sub categories: Self Exploration, Major Exploration, Career Exploration and General major Exploration. Under Self Exploration there are a series of links to different activities you can complete on your own intended to find the best career fit for you and to help highlight your strengths and weakness.

Of all the major links listed, if you’re only checking out one, this is where I’d start.

Career Services

Here you’ll find video seminars on cover letters, dressing for success and job negotiations among other things. In addition to seminars there are links to CSU’s Career Center, Larimer County and Colorado Workforce Centers, and CSU’s Career Management Center.

Interviewing

Within this category are various links to help you ace the interview process. You’ll find a video interview workshop, 6 ways to stand out in an interview, and an interviewing preparation guide.

Going Abroad (Work, Study, Service)

This category provides links to CSU’s Study Abroad program and additional links to informational websites like idealist.org and the US Aid, US Peace Corps and Americorps. You’ll also find websites for International Jobs and advice on International Business Etiquette and Manners.

Applications & Self-Marketing Materials (Resume, Cover Letter, Etc.)

This category is pretty self explanatory, with links to help you write a resumes and cover letters. It contains sub categories for undergraduate and graduate students, as well as additional links on references, communication tips and follow up/thank you notes.

Graduate School & Professional Development 

Sub categories: Professional Associations, Licensing and Graduate School contain links to information on real estate and accounting licensure and information on graduate schools, MBA programs and continued education.

Networking & Personal Branding

Personal Branding and Value Propositions, Networking Basics, Social Media and     Informational Interviews

Negotiating Offers & Salaries

5 Salary Negotiation Tips, Offer Negotiation Worksheet, Salary Resources, National Association of Colleges and Employers’ Salary Calculator, Evaluating and Negotiating Job Offers, Colorado Occupational Wages, and (hugely helpful for myself) Salary Negotiation for Introverts.

Occupational & Industry Information

If you’re looking for statistics on the best and worst jobs out there in terms of salary, employee turnover and market growth, this category has an abundance of links to help you find them. Starting with the Bureau of Labor Statistics, Occupational Outlook Handbook, The Vault Online Business Careers Resource, Workforce Resources by State, Summer Leadership Programs, Colorado LMI Gateway and the WetFeet Online Job Seeker Library.

Special Populations

International students, Disability, Veterans, and Diversity.

Job & Internships Search

Job and Internship search tips, think key terms, locations and strategy checklist.

Work-Life Balance

Find links to local events and healthy living. Focused in Northern Colorado you’ll find information on where and when to partake in some fun activities.

Work-Life Balance Essential to Health, Fort Collins Calendar of Events, Strike a Work-Life Balance, Downtown Fort Collins Events Calendar, Northern Colorado Hiking Guide, Northern Colorado Guides, Fort Collins Meet-up Groups, Recreation Leagues of Fort Collins, and Volunteer: United Way of Larimer County