The first step in the “Career Roadmap” is to Know Yourself. Whether, a first-year student interested in learning how majors relate to careers, a senior contemplating graduate school or an alumnus considering a career change, it is crucial that you first identify your interests, values, skills and personality preferences to make a well–informed decision.
Kentucky State University’s Career and Professional Development Center has resources available to help you choose a major that is an ideal fit for you.
Individual counseling sessions may be arranged to help students and alumni clarify career interests, values, and work-related skills; explore potential careers and employers; and refine job seeking, interviewing, and resume preparation skills.
Experience a simulation of a real interview. Receive feedback and guidance regarding effective interviewing skills. Many of these interviews are conducted by employers.
Your resume is a marketing tool created to market you. It may be your first contact with an employer whether applying for an internship, co-op or job opportunity. Resume support for leadership, graduate school, scholarship, and fellowship applications is available.
Employers often review resumes and cover letters in 10 seconds or less. Therefore, your resume must be well-written, concise, extremely organized, and easy to read to be effective. Customize your resume for the reader, looking for opportunities to match your accomplishments and interests to their needs. Tailoring your resume and cover letter to the particular employer is an essential component of a successful resume and cover letter!
There is not one correct way to organize a resume. It depends on your unique education, experiences, and skills. It is a good idea to have different versions of your resume depending on the job type/industry that you’d like to target.
Drop by the Career and Professional Development Center, Carl M. Hill Student Center, Suite 320. Once we have received your resume, it will usually take three to five days to complete.
Internships provide meaningful work experience related to your academic studies. Such opportunities offer an experience to evaluate a potential career while completing courses. An internship can also help you develop professional references and contacts for future networking. Internships are available for all academic majors.
Results from the NACE’s Class of 2015 Student Survey revealed:
- Students who took paid internships or co-ops were more likely to receive an offer of full-time employment and a higher salary offer from their employers than were students who took unpaid internships or co-ops.
- Paid internships/co-ops with private, for-profit companies, yielded the highest offer rate (72.2 percent). In contrast, just 43.9 percent of students who had unpaid internships/co-ops with private, for-profit companies received offers.
- The difference in offer rates between paid and unpaid positions is evident across employer types, including nonprofit (51.7 percent vs. 41.5 percent), state/local government (50.5 percent vs. 33.8 percent), and federal government sectors (61.9 percent vs. 50 percent).
- There was also a similar pattern regarding starting salary offers. Having had a paid internship/co-op with a private, for-profit company yielded the highest median offer at $53,521 while the median offer for students who took unpaid internships/co-ops with a private, for-profit company was $34,375.
- The same held true across industry sectors—nonprofit ($41,876 vs. $31,443), state/local government ($42,693 vs. $32,969), and federal government sectors ($48,750 vs. $42,501).
Overall, an employer was far more likely to provide a job to a student before graduation if he or she had an internship or co-op—especially a paid position. The gap in offer rates between students with internship/co-op experience and those without such experience grew from 12.6 percent in 2011 to 20 percent in 2015 (56.5 percent versus 36.5 percent). Source: Class of 2015 Student Survey, National Association of Colleges and Employers
Paid Interns/Co-ops see greater offer rates and salary offers than their unpaid classmates.
Business etiquette is all about professionalism and appropriate behavior. You will never have a second chance to make a first impression. First impressions are often lasting impressions with potential employers. Here are a few tips:
- Do your homework. You will be more confident and prepared. Research the company and the position. Bring multiple copies of your resume and references, and make sure they are kept neat and unwrinkled in a folder, preferably leather-bound portfolio.
- Be on time! In fact, plan to arrive 15 minutes early. That way, you are not rushed and gives your interviewer the sense that you are punctual and prepared.
- Dress professionally. It is always better to be overdressed and more traditional than too trendy or casual. If possible, find out the expected dress code. In an interview, a business suit is usually a safe choice. In most industries, conservative is better.
- Send thank-you notes. This small gesture can make a world of difference. Anytime an employer gives you their time, whether, a formal or informal setting, send an email within a day and follow up with a hand-written thank you note. You want them to know that their time was appreciated and valued and that you enjoyed learning more about their company and the open position.
If part of your interview or meeting with an employer includes a meal, good manners are essential. Remember to use utensils, working from the outside of the plate toward the inside. Eat slowly. A meal is a chance for your potential employer to see how you act in a more relaxed environment than the interview room. Treat the meal as part of the interview process, and if you are unsure about what to order or how to conduct yourself, take your cues from your host.
Check our website to see when the next etiquette seminar/dinner will be held or contact (502) 597-6700 for more information.
- More information via EtiquetteSkills
Interview Tips & Guides
- Tough Interview Questions article in the Herald Leader by Theresa Mickelwait.
- Sample Interview Questions – Kentucky State University
- Interview Tips – KSU Career and Professional Development Center
Careers and Majors
What can I do with this major? Is a convenient website that helps you connect majors with careers. For each major that interests you, there is an outline of common career areas, typical employers, and strategies designed to maximize career opportunities.
Graduate and Professional School Profiles