Prospective Students…

It is great that you are considering coming to Carleton University.  Once you arrive, be sure to come into Career Services as early as your first or second year to start working on skills and developing your résumé .  *Registered Students* in any year and in all programs will have full access to the wide range of services, listings, workshops, magazines, and resources available at the Career Centre.

Parents…

Here are some tips and guidelines for helping your son or daughter prepare for their future over the next four years.

1. Listen to their career concerns and ideas – By listening you can provide them with feedback, support, and information regarding their interests and goals.  Talk to them about your own work experiences including your industry type, employer, roles and responsibilities.  You can offer to bring them to work for a day to shadow you or a colleague on the job to experience different types of workplaces.  While you can share your own values, interests, and goals, be sure to respect your their’s interests, especially if they differ from your own.

2. Help them maintain a strong, positive self-image – It is tough to convince an employer that you are the best person for the job if you don’t believe it yourself.  With this in mind, try to help them identify their strengths, values, skills, personality traits, and enduring interests.  Let him/her know that you admire these specific qualities and help them recognize that these qualities will act as great assets to a future career.

3. Encourage your son or daughter to seek out professionals to speak to – This could include neighbours, friends, and relatives. These face-to-face connections with professional can be vital, as they will provide insight into different industries and occupations.  For more tips on this process check out our tip sheet on Information Interviews.

4. Help out Carleton University students! – If you are an employer, consider contacting Carleton University’s Career Services with job/volunteer opportunities.  Our website CUHire allows you to post job opportunities at any time, at no charge!

Posting a job on CUHire is easy. Just follow these steps:

– Visit CUHire and complete the registration form. Please allow up to one business day for activation of your account. You will receive an email notice to inform you when your account is active.

– Once your account is activated, you can log in and post job opportunities at your convenience. Jobs will be approved and released for student viewing within 48 hours of your submission.

5. Encourage your child to…

Obtain marketable skills – In addition to working on a University degree, challenge your student to work on supplemental marketable skills in at least 2-3 of the following areas:

  • Computer skills (programming, word processing, spreadsheets, and the internet)
  • Quantitative skills (accounting, statistics, and economics)
  • Communication skills (written and oral)
  • Marketing skills (sales, publicity, and fundraising)
  • Technical skills (lab skills and scientific research)
  • Foreign language skills (especially French, Spanish, Chinese, and Russian)
  • Leadership skills (supervisory, extracurricular leadership roles, and teamwork)

Take advantage of internships and co-operative education – These programs can give them a sense of the real world of work.  Internships can be paid or unpaid and can vary in length (many occur over the summer).  Often these experiences serve as gateways to future jobs or setting up networking contacts.  To learn more about co-op click here.

Make the most of Career Services at Carleton University – As career educators on campus, Career Services has a team of professional career counsellors and support staff ready to assist, encourage, and counsel Carleton University students and alumni. Try to ensure that your son or daughter is familiar with the wide range of services available through Career Services at Carleton University which include:

Participate in extracurricular activities – Volunteer work and extracurricular activities are extremely important.  These activities, both on and off campus, can be immensely helpful to your student’s growing awareness of their strengths, weaknesses, likes, and dislikes, all of which are critical to the career decision-making process.  These activities are also viewed positively by employers.  Carleton’s co-curricular record (CCR) program allows students to record their extracurricular experiences.  To learn more about the co-curricular record click here.

Try out direct employer contact – Encourage your son or daughter to find companies or organizations that fit with their interests. Your son or daughter would need to research the company through their website and then look to contact them directly stating their interest in working for the company. Given their research, they should be able to determine the best department or role for them within the organization. Direct employer contact, or “cold calling”, can feel like a shot in the dark.  However, it is actually one of the most effective job search strategies students can employ.

Encourage your son or daughter to make time for their career planning – With many demands on time, students too often put off their career planning “until tomorrow”.  Encourage your son or daughter to use Carleton University’s Career Services as early as their first year and to visit often.  Do not despair, however, if your son or daughter graduates without a job.  All career fields have different search deadlines and it takes time to find the right opportunity.  Being a full-time student and a full-time job seeker is a challenging experience.  But remember, Career Services is still available to help alumni with their career planning and development.