Not Sure What Career Path To Take? You’re Not Alone!

BY KELSEY CRAIG, CAREER COACH, TEMPLE UNIVERSITY CAREER CENTER

How do I know I chose the right career path? This is a question I asked myself on a regular basis. This is a question that you may be asking yourself as you go to class after class, preparing for life after graduation.

Two years ago, I decided to become a Board Certified Coach for which I was asked to complete a personality assessment. This specific assessment evaluated my interests and provided a list of possible career options based on those interests. I had never before completed the assessment and the occupations that showed up on my list might have been shocking had they not made such sense to me. Huh? (you might ask) Let me give you some quick background…

While earning my Masters degree, I worked in an assistantship as a Graduate Residence Hall Director at Indiana University of Pennsylvania. This position closely aligned with my career goal and I often talked with my colleagues about my strengths, my skills, and my work style. In other words, I was somewhat self-aware and knew what I enjoyed about my work, but I never stopped to think if what I was currently doing was what I wanted to be doing for the rest of my life.

There are few things that give me as much joy as being able to help others. But there are many ways to help people and this was not something I had fully considered when I entered Higher Education. When I saw this new list of potential occupations, I was intrigued, confused, and excited. How could this assessment know me better than I knew me? Where was this assessment when I was a freshman in college and so sure that I wanted to become a guidance counselor? How could I become a cosmetologist (one of my new possible occupations)?

I was ready to change my career path away from higher education, or so I thought. I did some additional reflection about what entering into a new field might look like and if I would truly enjoy it as much as I did my current career. In my current field, I had the chance to talk with students every day and help them make decisions which would impact the rest of their lives. I decided that was the type of help I wanted to give and stayed on my career path which lead me to where I am now, a Career Coach here at Temple University.

How does my story relate to you? You get to decide your future. Though you may be studying a specific major with an intended career path, you may face some obstacles. You may come to realize you no longer have a passion for the major you’re studying. You may fail a required class (multiple times) which requires you to change your major. You may not meet the requirements needed to continue on your current career path. These obstacles don’t need to mean the end of the road for your future, but they do mean a detour on your career path. This is where your Career Coach can help. We can guide you as you decide on a major using our Focus 2* assessment, provide feedback on your professional documents (resume/cover letter), discuss job search resources, and help you prepare for an interview. Career Coaches can also talk with you about employment opportunities within various Career Communities (or groups of industries that share common interests).

In the Career Center, our goal is to assist you in deciding on and obtaining the right career, so don’t be a stranger and schedule an appointment today!

*The Temple University Career Center in 220 Mitten Hall offers the Focus 2 assessment which will evaluate your work interests, personality, values, leisure interests, and skills as well as provide you with a list of possible occupations and majors to consider. The Focus 2 assessment is free for all Temple students and alumni and is accessible through the Career Center website at http://www.temple.edu/provost/careercenter/resources/online.html.

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