5 Ways Your College Career Center Can Prepare You For The Real World

The career center at most colleges is a wonderful resource for finding an outstanding job after graduation. Yet, most students do not take advantage of all the extremely helpful and free services their college career centers offer. These are services that cost big money in the real world. Utilizing them in college can give you a strong leg up in the competitive career world, post graduation.

Here are some of the fantastic resources your college career center provides that can prepare you for life after college, and launch your post-graduation career with amazing success.

1. Assistance with Writing Your Resume and Cover Letter

This is something nearly every college career center in the nation offers. Unless you've had an extensive work history before attending college, the chances are high you've never written a resume, or have only written basic ones for part-time jobs. Your school's career center will help you design a professional resume, and will even guide you in customizing it for your college major or the career path you want to follow.

You will also get free guidance on how to write a quality cover letter for any job to which you apply, which is a really useful benefit; most people, even experienced professionals, are unsure of what to put on a cover letter. Your college career center will teach you how to write a proper one.

2. Access to Employers Who are Recruiting

If you are hoping to get a job as soon as you graduate, the career center is a good place to look. Many employers looking to fill entry-level positions will put notices in the career centers of the local colleges, or even in colleges around the country (if it is an employer with many branches, or one that is willing to pay relocation expenses to get the best employees).

Look at your college career center to discover job postings and learn exactly who you should contact at the companies to make sure your resume gets reviewed by the people making the hiring decisions. You can also use your college's career center to look for job postings with your dream employers or in locations where you would like to move. Career fair information is usually posted at the college career center, as well, and you can go to these fairs to meet recruiters from many different employers in person.

3. Assistance with Applying to Graduate School

If you want to continue your education and pursue graduate school, your college's career center is the place to go for information. There are counselors there who will help you select the ideal graduate program and school, give you practice entrance exams, assist with writing entrance essays, and getting the letters of recommendation you need. They can also help put necessary materials together, in a timely matter, when applying to the school/s of your choice.

4. Career Handbooks to Peruse

Your college career center is full of handbooks and written materials about many career paths. Look at these before declaring your major, to get an idea of what you might want to major in, in order to pursue a rewarding career. Even if you've already decided on a major and a career, these handbooks are useful to discover things about the career you might not already know, and that can give you an edge when applying to jobs with companies in your chosen industry.

5. Practice Interviews

Going to a job interview can be a tense situation, especially if you've never interviewed for a job in the past. Even if you've interviewed for part-time jobs, interviewing for a professional after-graduation job in your chosen career is different. Your college career center has counselors available to coach you in proper interview techniques, and to offer practice interview sessions. With this help, you can interview with total confidence.

If you haven't visited your college's career center, you are missing out on a lot of important and useful free resources. These resources can provide an edge above other students in getting the job you want most, since the majority of students ignore the career center. Don't be one of the many who do this. Use the career center resources to your advantage; it’s one of the smartest decisions you can make while in college.

Author Bio:

Alison Blankenship has worked 6 years in the marketing departments at TextBookRush. Alison is focused on improving user engagement and experience for all of TextBookRush customers.