Become the Master of Your Career – Part 1

As a college student, your daily grind probably includes classes, student organizations, sports, jobs and internships, and sleep! How are you supposed to squeeze in time to get ready for life after graduation?

Psst. Guess what? You already are! USF prepares its students for their future careers in a number of ways, and for each student, that journey is a unique combination of their individual experiences.

What we’ve noticed in Career Services is that while our students have some fantastic ways of becoming “career ready,” they may not know how to connect those experiences in ways that will be meaningful to the employers who want to recruit them.

So, how can we help you speak the language of campus recruiters? That’s easy.

Learn It  >  Do It  >  Show It
In our new Career Readiness Badging Program, you’ll learn about the eight essential skills employers are looking for, what you need to do to develop these skills, and how you can show employers that you are a master of your career!

How do we know what employers are looking for? NACE, the National Association of Colleges and Employers, surveys employers around the country to find out what skills they say are essential for any incoming hire to have.

What are these skills? Let’s take a closer look at two of them today.


What does being a “professional” mean? It probably depends on the job, right? Sure. Different industries have different ways of interpreting what it means to be a professional, but they all have some common themes that you can master while at USF.

Masters of professionalism are productive workers, arrive early or on-time for their shifts and to meetings, are humble about their achievements, and own up to and learn from their mistakes. They also act responsibly, which goes beyond simply meeting deadlines. By exceeding expectations and acting with the interests of the larger community in mind, those with professionalism skills become valuable assets for a company.

Through the Career Readiness Badging Program, you can demonstrate that you’ve learned about the professional essential skill in your coursework, through online learning programs (like, or through workshops or training programs.


Career Management
Those who have mastered career management have a pretty good idea about their career goals. They know their strengths, can talk about their experiences, and have built the skills and knowledge they will need to succeed in their future career. They know how and where to search for jobs related to their field, and they can advocate for themselves for promotions and raises in the workplace.

Through the Career Readiness Badging Program, you can demonstrate that you’ve learned about the career management essential skill in your coursework, through online learning programs (like, or through workshops or training programs.

In order to earn the badge for this essential skill, you’ll need to meet with a Career Consultant in our office. They can help you become a master of career management by working with you to talk about all of your other skills and experiences that are beneficial to the jobs you want to apply for.


Professionalism and Career Management are just two of the essential skills you’ll need to become a master of your career. Look for our next blog post to discuss two more skills you’ll need: Communications and Technology!

If you’re ready to become career ready, consider joining us for one of our upcoming orientation sessions.



Get Answers at Career Services

You made it through the first week of the Fall 2017 semester! Congratulations!

How do you like your classes so far? Do you still feel confident in your major choice? What are your thoughts about your life after graduation?

Have you been asking yourself questions like these?

These can be scary thoughts to face alone! And it doesn’t matter how old you are or how long you’ve been at USF, these types of questions can bubble up at any time. When they do come up, it’s good to know where you can get answers so that you feel confident, are not stressed, and are able to take classes you enjoy and plan to explore a career pathway that you are excited about.

Luckily, at Career Services, we have staff members who are trained to assist you with all of these questions, and the questions that you didn’t even know you had yet! Keep reading below to find out more about what our office does and how we can help you face any question you might have about your major or career while at USF.


Guest Relations Assistants

The Guest Relations Team staffs our front desk area. When you have questions about what our office does, or you need help figuring out what your next step should be, the Guest Relations Assistants will be able to help you navigate our office quickly and easily so that you can get answers to your time-sensitive questions without skipping a beat!


Career Peer Advisors

We encourage those who are new to our office to start with our walk-in service, Career Express, staffed by our team of Career Peer Advisors. Our Peers are undergraduate students who have been trained to assist other students with their quick career-related questions, like where to find on-campus job postings, and with career documents, like resumes and cover letters.

Already have a resume or cover letter? Bring a printed copy with you for a review. If you’re not sure how to start writing either of those things, check out the resources on our website, or come by and ask for help creating one. If you do this, it’s best to come with some knowledge of your past experience, be that work experience, involvement in student organizations, volunteering, or something else!


Career Consultants

Your Career Consultant is an advisor who is dedicated to assisting you with your career goals. This can include deciding what kind of career you want to pursue, discovering job opportunities within that career field, understanding and refining required application materials, and preparing for job interviews. Our Consultants meet with students from specific major groups or industries. To find out who your Career Consultant is, contact our office or visit us during one of our events.

We recommend meeting with a Career Peer Adivsor during Career Express before seeing your Career Consultant so that the time you spend with the Consultant can be more focused. If you have questions about this, please contact our office.

We also have a Career Counselor in our office who works with students that are trying to change majors. If you don’t feel confident in your choice of major, we will work with you to explore your interests, personality, skills, and values through an assessment called MyPlan to help you decide on both a career and a major that better aligns with you.


Other Services

Our office also offers many other services to help you answer your career-related questions. We have career courses, a wide variety of internship opportunities, a Cooperative Education program, Career & Internship Fairs and other employer events, and so much more.

To explore all that we have available, check out our website.

You’ll also want to make sure that you activate your Handshake profile to keep up with our on-campus events. When you activate it, check the box to make your profile visible to employers. They may want to reach out to you about opportunities you may not have considered! You can also upload your resume to your documents, make it a public resume that can be accessed by hiring employers, and use it to build your profile. If you have questions about Handshake, stop by during our Career Express hours!

Social Networking

Do you have a thousand followers, or a couple friends? Are you the next YouTube star, or do you prefer to sing in the shower? Do you love meeting people and connecting with them online, or would you rather have a one-on-one chat with someone over coffee?

Does the idea of meeting new people thrill you, or intimidate you?

Meeting new people, making friends, connecting with others, and building your network is different for different people. While extroverts may be able to expand their network more quickly and easily than introverts, they may not make connections that are as meaningful as the ones that introverts make. And neither option – a large network of unfamiliar names and faces, or a smaller group of close friends and associates – is better or worse than the other.

Regardless of who you are or how you connect with people, building and maintaining your network becomes an important part of your college life from the moment you step on campus. You’ll meet roommates, classmates, students in your organizations, work colleagues, professors, and advisors. Through Career Services, you can make connections with your Career Peer Advisors, your Career Consultant, and the employers who can’t wait to have you on their teams! And, while not all of the new people you meet will become your best friends or colleagues, they each have experiences that they can share with you to help you realize your next step towards your life after graduation.

Because of the vast number of people you’ll come into contact with during college, building your network can be easy, even if you’re an introvert. Maintaining that network doesn’t have to be hard either, but it will require some forethought. Before you add your professor to your Facebook, check out our social media tips below.


Get Connected

Decide what social media platforms, if any, you’ll want to use to connect with people. If you already have social media accounts and don’t want people to find and add you, make sure your privacy settings are updated. Keep in mind that what is posted online never truly goes away, even if your account is completely private.

Some people choose to create a public account that anyone can see, including potential employers. If you decide to do this, watch what you share and post to that site. While you do have to be mindful of what you share, creating an online presence is increasingly important for those who will eventually be seeking employment. Many employers research potential hires and look at their social media accounts to see if their activity aligns with the organization’s culture.

For maintaining professional networks, we recommend using LinkedIn. In addition to being the preferred platform of many employers, you are able to customize your link so that you can easily add it to business cards or your resume. If you need assistance setting up your LinkedIn profile, or understanding how to use LinkedIn, schedule an appointment with your Career Consultant.


Google Yourself

Want to know what others see before they see it? Type your name into Google and see what pops up. If you don’t like what you see, you can try to work with a Search Engine Optimization expert to bury undesired content or make other content more relevant.


Use an Appropriate Email Address

Your middle school email address is not the address you want to email your professors or advisor from, and it is certainly not what you want listed on your resume. Because your social media accounts are often linked to an email address, consider creating a professional email address and relinking the accounts to it. That way, if the email address ever shows up, you don’t have to worry about it being linked somewhere that embarrasses you or that you no longer access. When creating a professional email account, we always recommend using some combination of your first and last name.



College is a great opportunity for you to begin building your network and making connections. If you’re not sure how to start, try saying hello!

If you need help figuring out how to network, what kinds of people would be good for you to connect with, or how you can get involved at networking events, contact USF Career Services to schedule an appointment with your Career Consultant or view out tips online here:

Packing for Your Fall 2017 Experience

Hey USF!

Are you ready for the Fall 2017 semester?

We know how much can be going on in your head when you pack, so we’ve put together a list of things that you should remember to bring with you – especially if you’re planning to look for a job, research or volunteer position, or internship!


Work and Health Related Documentation

If you want to work on or off campus, you’ll want to make sure that you have any documents you might need during the hiring process. This normally includes your original birth certificate and social security card; passport, driver’s license, or other government-issued photo ID; and visa documents, if you’re an international student. Also, if you were awarded the Federal Work Study, or FWS award, make sure that you accept the award on OASIS before applying to jobs.

Some organizations also require that you have health check-ups or tests done before you can work, so be sure to bring any insurance information, and have your shot records up-to-date and forwarded to your local doctor’s office.

It’s also good to plan to bring a fireproof safe to keep these documents locked up and out of harm’s way!


Medical Prescriptions

Make sure to remember to pack any prescription medications, and be sure to have extra supplies in case it takes you a while to see a local doctor and get your prescription filled close to USF. Just like your insurance information, be ready to pass any of your current prescription information on to your local doctor.


Interview-Ready Attire

Even if you’re not looking for a job or internship, you never know what might come your way! It’s good to be ready for any situation, so pack both business casual and business professional attire in your suitcase.

Who knows? Maybe you’ll interview for the perfect research position, or you’ll have to dress up for an in-class presentation!

Don’t have business appropriate attire? Don’t stress! Visit Suit-A-Bull, the on-campus business attire lending closet, and borrow clothing for free. Details about Suit-A-Bull, including their hours, can be found here:


School (or Office?) Supplies

Don’t be that one guy who always borrows their neighbor’s pen and then writes on themselves because they forgot their notebook too! Stay on top of your semester by making sure you have everything you need to succeed before you get to campus. Plus, if you start working, you’ll have all the office supplies you’ll need for your first day on the job.

Pro tip: You can pick up a free USF planner at the MSC. Just bring your USF ID Card.


Keep Dates in Mind!

Remember, residence halls open on Thursday, August 17 for the Fall 2017 semester. If you haven’t started packing, you still have some time!

Once you get to USF, meet up with Career Services at our 4th Annual Career Kickoff Cookout on Thursday, August 24 near the Student Services Building, and at the Part-Time Job Fair on Thursday, August 31 in the MSC Ballroom. Get more details at


For more things to check off your packing list, please visit . You’ll also find important information about parking, dining, and on-campus mail at this link.