The COVE Career Center Shape Your Story
Let this place, this community, and its people help you navigate your direction in life.
The tools listed below play an important part in helping you define your path during and after Westmont by acknowledging your abilities, understanding your values and what matters to you most, and recognizing your transferable skills. Schedule an appointment on Handshake to uncover your values and dig deeper.
Resources & Tools to help Shape Your Story
Picking your major(s) is a big deal, so talk it though with professors, parents and others that know you well. Meet with a Career Counselor to discover good-fit majors for you!
Notice that we haven't said one word about a job or salary. That's because after ten years in the work force 80% of college graduates work in careers outside their major.
Yes, you need to pay the bills and we encourage you to strive for success, but first understand that you'll do more for yourself if you pursue a major that makes you want to learn, develops your capacity for thinking creatively, and rewards your curiosity. These are traits, no matter what major you choose, that will propel your professional career.
When should you start thinking about a major?
We suggest that you start thinking about majors in the second semester of your first year, while trying various classes in your first and second years to clarify your interests. Meet with a Career Counselor to dissect who you are and what you are studying, and visit this helpful website that shows you what you can do with each major - the areas of work, the employers, and strategies to get there.
What are the majors and minors offered at Westmont?
Here is a list of the majors and minors at Westmont.
Transferable skills is a catch phrase. But it's a catch phrase because it's true. The things you learn in one circumstance can be applied (transferred) to many different opportunities.
The Transferable Skills Exercise is foundational to making your resume and LinkedIn profile stand out, and it's vital in shaping your interview skills. You'll learn to evaluate your skills in terms of your level of interest and capacity.
Who should take this exercise?
Best suited for students enrolled in senior seminar or internship classes. Log onto Handshake to schedule a Skills appointment with a Career Counselor.
What are the things that are most important to you in career decision making? The Skills and Values card sort exercise can help you with the guidance of a Career Counselor, critically assess and prioritize work related values and provides clarity so you can make better career decisions.
Who should take this exercise?
All students. Log onto Handshake to schedule a Skills appointment with a Career Counselor.
We're ready to talk, and we can provide one-on-one assistance at the significant crossroads during your time at Westmont. Our Career Counselor and professional staff can provide you with a safe space for navigating future decisions.
Who should take part in Career Counseling?
All students. Log onto Handshake to schedule an appointment with a Career Counselor or career professional.
This tool aligns your interests with professionals in specific occupations that have similar interests to you. The inventory will provide insight for good-fit careers, educational paths, and a what a healthy work-life balance looks like for you!
Who should take this assessment?
For this tool to provide optimal results, we recommend you to have at least one job experience (internships and summer jobs qualify) prior. This typically include Sophomores, Juniors, and Seniors.
How do I take this assessment?
Contact a career counselor for information about an access code to the assessment and schedule a "strong interest inventory" appointment via Handshake.
Visit our Tell Your Story page for the most comprehensive help and resources.
An Informational Interview is a valuable tool that can provide you with a window into the work that people actually do day to day. This simple activity will clarify your perceptions, gain insights on their work and how they got where they are in their careers as well as potentially provide you with important networking contacts for the future. Take advantage of our Interviewing for Information handout.
Job Searching can be a challenge for a liberal arts graduate, but the fact is that the skills and characteristics you have developed in college and through your life experiences, are just the ones employers are looking for. Career counselors and professional staff can help you navigate this process. Check out the Job Search Handout
Who should take part in this opportunity?
All students. Log onto Handshake to schedule an appointment with a Career Counselor or professional staff.
Internships are the best way for you to get real, day-to-day insights on whether a company or job is right for you. Employers often use internship programs to recruit students for employment after graduation. Internships can be paid/unpaid, for credit or not for credit. No matter how your internship is structured, it's a key step in your preparation for life after Westmont.
Who should get an internship?
All students. Best for sophomores, juniors and seniors. Log onto Handshake to schedule an appointment with a Career Counselor or professional staff to more internship information.
Why are internships important?
Check out "How Valuable are Internships?" from Forbes Magazine on the benefit of gaining experience through an internship.
Regardless of your major, these "crash courses" in conversational literacy for key technologies (SalesForce, Google Analytics, LinkedIn, Excel and others) can help you be more market ready.
Who should attend these?
All students. Look for communications from the COVE Career Center
Shaping Your Westmont (APP-080) is designed to equip students: (1) find direction surrounding major(s), career(s), and life decisions based on their individual characteristics (personality, interests, skills, values), (2) increase confidence through decreasing anxiety around meaningful work, and (3) communicate these characteristics to potential employers (via resume, interviewing, job search, internships, networking). This is an interactive course where students will hear from faculty and professionals from a wide array of disciplines. This course will help foster self-awareness, growth, and direction, which will help you explore career options, set goals, and pursue meaningful living.
Who should take this class?
All class levels (best-suited for first and second year students). Look for APP-080 during registration to sign up for the class.
Meaningful work is just around the corner. Carve out some time to learn more about jobs, trends, growth areas, and salary information. Check out getting a job on campus to learn about on campus employment. Log into Handshake and explore the jobs and internships listed.
Who should explore different jobs?
How do you explore different jobs?
Need more information about jobs and occupations? The Occupational Outlook Handbook, a U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics site, can help you find career information on duties, education and training, pay and outlook for hundreds of occupations.
My Next Move, a U.S. Department of Labor sponsored site, has detailed descriptions of the world of work for use by job seekers, workforce development and HR professionals, students, researchers, and more.
Career Cafe is a monthly gathering that provides you the opportunity to talk with employers about internships or employment, find out more about a specific industry and develop your networking skills in a casual environment.
Who should attend Career Cafe?
How will I know when a Career Cafe will be held?
Career Cafe is typically held on Monday evenings, once in September, January, and April. Look for emails and other communications from the COVE Career Center.