Steps to Your Future
Whether you are a Freshman, Sophomore, Junior, or Senior, the Career Development Office is available to assist you as you move through your college career and on to the next steps of your life. If you utilize the services of the Career Development Office, in addition to the assistance provided by the faculty and Institutes, you will be more confident as you move into the world beyond Albion.
Contact the Career Development Office
Walk-in Times are available in the Career Development office for simple questions such as a resume critique or assistance in knowing where to start. This is a time you do not need to schedule this appointment, but you may have to wait if others are receiving assistance.
Individualized appointments allow us to take the time to focus on your specific needs - choosing a major, career planning, job search skills, obtaining an internship, preparing for graduate/professional school, and so on. Contact us to make an appointment.
Career Development offers self-assessment inventories to help you explore potential majors and your career options. Simply make an appointment with a Career Development staff member, identify your wish to take a self-assessment tool, complete the inventory prior to the appointment, and we will review the information with you at the meeting.
Research/Investigate Career Opportunities
You need to do research on career possibilities, learn about job search strategies, and explore graduate schools and admission processes. The Career Development office has a Career Resource Center to assist you. Any staff member will be happy to help you find the resources of interest to you. In addition to the Resource Center, it is important you look to the Internet as a source of up-to-date information on careers and graduate schools. The Career Development staff are interested in assisting you to learn search sources and strategies to enhance your use of the Internet.
Carefully consider your Social Networking Presence
More and more businesses and programs look online for information about who you are. Jobs and internships can be lost if your online presence is unprofessional. The Career Development office is available to consult with you regarding the content of your social networking sites such as Facebook and MySpace. You should also consider joining professional social networking sites, such as
Attend Workshops and Events
The Career Development staff present a variety of workshops on campus. Workshops for student organizations, Greek Life, residence hall staff, and faculty are available; simply request a specialized meeting. In addition to workshops, Career Development participates in several career events throughout the year. A calendar of meetings and events is posted on our website
Develop Targeted Resumes, Cover Letters, and/or Personal Statements
These documents are your initial “face” to organizations and graduate schools. Career Development staff will assist you in the steps to start a resume, cover letter, and/or personal statement, discuss strategies to enhance these documents, and critique your drafts.
Gain Experience while at Albion
Summer jobs and internships provide you experiences that will assist you in standing out as you apply for post Albion jobs and graduate school. The Career Development office maintains online services that provide job and internship searching, career research resources, and the on-campus recruiting program. Make sure to complete your profile, upload your resume, and check out all jobs, internships, programs, and resources available to you! Are you connected with Albion’s online job search tool? Click on and get started!
Mock interviews provide you with experience prior to graduate school or internship/job interviews. During the mock interview you will be videotaped. A Career Development staff member will view the video with you and discuss what you did well and areas for improvement. Ten out of ten students say that completing a mock interview in Career Development was a very helpful experience!
Attend On-Campus Recruiting Events
Employers come to campus to interview students for a variety of internship and full-time job opportunities. In addition, employers may collect resumes through the Career Development office’s on-line system. Create a profile on and check out the employers coming to campus on the Career Development calendar.
Most importantly – be proactive!
The staff of Career Development will assist you in gaining the knowledge needed to find internship and job opportunities that meet your needs. You, however, must take the first step in contacting Career Development if you need assistance and doing the work required to find those opportunities that fit your interests.
Make Your Cover Letter Count in a Competitive Job Market
Today’s primary modes of communication are e-mail, text messages, and web pages. The job search process is no different. Most job searches are done on the Internet, and job seekers e-mail their resumes or complete online applications.
Given these facts: Are cover letters still necessary?
While the answer varies, the majority of human resource representatives and recruiters say yes. Done the right way, a cover letter can capture the second glance needed in a competitive job market.
There are two tips for crafting a catchy cover letter: follow the formula and personalize it.
Tip #1: Follow the formula
Cover letters contain four components with one essential question answered in each.
Paragraph One – Introduction
Who are you and why are you writing?
Paragraph Two – Highlight of Qualifications
How has your education, previous employment, or other experiences repared you for the position?
Paragraph Three – Connection to the Company
Why is this company or job a good fit for you?
Paragraph Four – Closing Statement
How interested are you and where can you be reached for an interview?
Tip #2: Personalize it
Paragraphs one and four follow standard formats. The opportunity for your application to connect with a recruiter is in paragraphs two and three.
Paragraph Two: Draw attention to yourself
When you read the job description and you declared, “I’m perfect for this job!” Tell the recruiter why. Is it because of a particular course you studied? Did you complete an internship that allowed you to perform similar duties and responsibilities? Were you able to develop a skill set through a part-time job or campus activity that is applicable to this position?
Make the connection between your past and this job. Don’t repeat your resume, but rather make reference to items on it that you especially want the recruiter to be aware of.
Paragraph Three: “Professional Flattery”
Your job search will reveal many positions for which you are qualified, but not all of them are of interest. What makes this position or company different? Pinpoint specifics about the job description that catch your eye. Research the organization. If the company product or workplace philosophy is appealing, tell the recruiter why.
Avoid empty compliments. Recruiters can spot meaningless sweet talk a mile away.
Pitfalls to Avoid
Applicants sometimes forget professionalism, and even common sense, when it comes to e-mailing and the job search. If your e-mail contains any of the following, hit the delete button.
- A risqué e-mail address. Use a basic e-mail address comprised of your name, initials, or something similar. Save
for corresponding with friends.
- Greeting the recruiter by their first name. If you know the recruiter’s name, don’t forget that Mr. or Ms. is still necessary. Just because Ms. Jane Doe lists her first name doesn’t mean you can call her Jane.
- A salutation that doesn’t begin with “Dear.” This is a business letter. Beginning the correspondence with “Greetings,” “Hello,” or “Hi There!” is not acceptable.
- Emoticons. 8-) :-( ;-) Emoticons are used to convey attitudes or emotions, both of which are irrelevant in a cover letter.
- Acronyms. LOL, COB, FAQs. As with emoticons, acronyms have no place in job-search correspondence, unless they are standard acronyms, such as that used for a company or association. For example: NACE (National Association of Colleges and Employers) is appropriate. “The 411 about NACE is very positive” is not.
by Kelli Robinson
JobWeb.com - Career development and job-search advice for the new college graduate