STEPS = Steps To Explore Prepare Succeed
The STEPS Career Development Plan provides an action plan for you to follow to help you acquire knowledge about yourself, career paths, and academic and career opportunities. Career decision-making is a process, and while activities are suggested over your four years as a Simmons undergraduate, you can also set your own pace in pursuing career development and use the timeline accordingly. If you get started in your first year, work with a career coach, and take advantage of the CEC's programs and resources, you will be better prepared to make informed and meaningful career decisions.
You can download a printable copy of the STEPS Career Development Plan here. You can also store it electronically and check off your progress as you go.
Here is the same plan in interactive form with links to key additional information and resources:
STEP 1 - ASSESSMENT: First Years
Get to know yourself - Begin to identify your values, interests, skills, personal traits and career satisfiers in order to identify the ingredients of a good career "fit":
- Meet with a career coach for help with self-assessment and early planning
- Complete online assessment tool, TypeFocus
- Begin to identify majors that fit your interests and abilities
- Create a draft resume and have a CEC career coach review it
STEP 2 - EXPLORATION: Sophomores
Explore and research career possibilities - Learn the connections between courses, concentrations and careers, and discover the benefits of experiential learning. Learn how to:
- Conduct career research and gather information from the Simmons Library and other valuable online resources
- Gather information on different fields, industries and companies
- Decide on a major and learn what career paths a major can offer
- Conduct informational interviews with people in fields that interest you
- Explore opportunities to gain relevant work experience, such as internships, summer jobs, or volunteer work
STEP 3 - PREPARATION: Juniors
Develop your resume and cover letter writing skills. Refine your career goals and strategy -
Through informational interviewing, internships, and relevant part-time and summer jobs, "test the waters" and determine a potential career direction:
- Revise and finalize an effective resume
- Develop your cover letter
- Research graduate schools and visit campuses
- Learn to present your goals and skills in a two minute "infomercial"
- Conduct informational interviews and build your network
- Obtain an internship
STEP 4 - IMPLEMENTATION: Seniors
Develop and implement your job search or graduate school strategy - Develop the skills you need to accomplish your goals:
- Sharpen your job search skills and develop a list of potential employers
- Prepare for interviews and practice interviewing skills with a mock interview
- Network with friends, parents, faculty, alumnae/i and others
- Gather graduate school application materials and write a personal statement
- Attend events such as career fairs, company presentations and career-related forums with alumnae/i
STEP 5 - DECISION-MAKING: Seniors
Make an informed and meaningful career decision - Gain insight into necessary professional development skills to be successful:
- Analyze job offers/graduate school admissions and weigh your options
- Meet with a career coach to walk through your decision-making
- Consider the practical aspects of life after Simmons, and attend seminars to help make this transition
- Join the Simmons alumnae/i network, Alumnet and LinkedIn, a social networking site for professionals
- Learn and practice the basics of negotiating
Check out the STEPS Career Development Plan
To learn more about the STEPS Career Development Plan based on the 5 Step Model and developed specifically for Simmons undergraduate students, visit the STEPS Plan page.
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Wondering where to start? Let us help. Drop by Monday and Tuesday from 3:00-4:30 or Wedneday and Thursday from 1:30-3:00; or, make an appointment at a time convenient to you.
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