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Finding a Job That You Can Love

Student Leadership Career Forum

Nine leading employers of CSUF graduates, over 40 student leaders, and industry specialists from the Career Center crafted the following tips for all CSUF students interested in pursuing professional employment upon graduation.

Identify Your Strengths, Capabilities, and Preferences

  • The right work environment is critical to being motivated in a career. Find one that matches your interests.
  • Give yourself credit for all of the leadership that you demonstrate when you are working long hours at a job while putting yourself through school.
  • Identify transferable skills regardless of your major.

Reflect on the Job Market

  • Remember that most sales and operations oriented jobs are primarily skills related, and can be pursued by all students effectively, regardless of your major.
  • Research the local market conditions in Orange County, and focus your search in those industries that are growing.

Target Employment Opportunities

  • Do not engage in an Internet-based shotgun approach to a job search.
  • Conduct a targeted job search and use the web to research employers extensively before you apply.
  • Do not limit yourself to advertised openings. Identify and pursue organizations even if they do not currently advertise appropriate opportunities for you.

Conduct an Effective Job Search

  • Look at what the job is really about — not just the name of the employer or the job title.
  • Describe your experience on your résumé in terms of skills and accomplishments. Avoid one-line descriptions.
  • Be prepared to discuss your strengths and weaknesses in a job interview, and use concrete examples.
  • Show ambition and make a personal connection in a job interview or networking situation.
  • Highlight your strong points, and be prepared to give examples.
  • Research an employer before you go to a job interview, and prepare a couple of appropriate questions.
  • On your résumé, seek to capture patterns of behavior that illustrate, over a period of time, what you can offer in the future.
  • Keep the following in mind as you prepare for effective job interviews:
    • Appearance
    • Attitude
    • Work Ethic
    • Assurance
    • Confidence Level
    • Spoken and Unspoken Body Language
    • Aptitude

Managing Your Career

  • Keep an open mind, and look out for long-term potential
  • A positive attitude is absolutely critical
  • Distinguish yourself from your competition
  • Develop a comfort with multi-tasking throughout your career
  • Know your goals and values so you can take each job to a higher level of performance
  • Get some professional work experience before attending graduate school
  • Keep your horizons broad, and consider opportunities in industries, job functions, and locations that may be new to you
  • Do not hesitate to take a risk and try something new