Four-Year Career Development Plan

Most would agree that professional and career development is a focal point of the college experience. Majors and minors are chosen, extracurricular activities rise to a new level, options for study abroad or community service broaden horizons and campus work, internships, co-ops or practicum connect students with the professional workplace. Family and friends regularly ask, “So, what are you planning to do after college?” in a well-meaning way.

Trying to undertake career development all at once can be daunting. But, with some important steps each year, it is possible to build confidence and a portfolio of skills and experiences that will serve you well with advanced study or professional employment.

First Year:
  • Get to know your academic advisor and faculty and seek their advice.
  • Develop spiritually through prayer, attending chapel and convocation and participating in ministries.
  • Take a career assessment offered by Career Services, which will assess your responses to a wide range of questions and will suggest occupations in line with your strongest interests.
  • Participate in extracurricular activities and try some new ventures.
  • Set up your login for and begin to search job and internship postings and career advice.
Sophomore Year:
  • Continue with core liberal arts courses and begin to register for courses in your major. If still deciding about a major, consider taking one or more introductory courses in majors that are of interest.
  • Participate in the rich array of extracurricular programs on campus – athletics, student government, residence life, student ministries or missions, community service, clubs, the arts or more.
  • Maintain or build foreign language skills to help support your communication in study abroad, missions, and community service programs.
  • Seek part-time or summer employment opportunities related to an academic or career interest.
  • Visit Career Services to explore occupations that connect with your major, minor or interestes.
Junior Year:
  • Seek a leadership or professional experience on campus such as becoming a teaching assistant, writing tutor, Career Ambassador, Admissions intern or other important roles.
  • Ask to be involved in your professor’s research projects.
  • Study abroad – see the Global Education Office for descriptions of many programs.
  • Visit Career Services and talk with your faculty about doing an internship or cooperative education experience to build skills for the workplace.
  • Attend the Graduate School Fair in September and/or the Gordon College Internship and Job Fair in February to meet with a wide array of representatives from graduate schools and employers. Plan to attend again senior year.
  • Continue to update your resume (see Career Services for assistance or a resume review) and start networking with Gordon alumni through campus events, Homecoming, or the LinkedIn Gordon Alumni Group. See Career Services and Alumni Office staff and calendars for questions about events.
  • Join the Gordon College Alumni Group.
  • Prepare for graduate study by talking with your faculty advisor and visiting Career Services for resources about graduate study programs, entrance exams (GRE, GMAT, LSAT, MCAT, etc.), fellowships and finances.
Senior Year:
  • Polish your job search skills for interviewing, writing cover letters, customizing resumes and networking.
  • Schedule an appointment in Career Services to develop a personalized job search plan.
  • Begin your job search early (September!) and set aside time each week to prepare applications or cover letters and resumes.