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Northwest Missouri State University


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Online Student Resources

Career Services has a variety of tools to help our online only students with a multitude of subjects. Below are links and videos that will be helpful. We also offer appointments over the phone, via email or through video conferencing tools to suit your needs.

 

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Career Readiness

The National Association of Colleges and Employers (NACE) defines Career Readiness as "the attainment and demonstration of requisite competencies that broadly prepare college graduates for a successful transition into the workplace."

They have identified eight core competencies that are commonly associated with career readiness:

  • Critical Thinking/Problem Solving
  • Oral/Written Communications
  • Teamwork/Collaboration
  • Digital Technology
  • Leadership
  • Professionalism/Work Ethic
  • Career Management
  • Global/Intercultural Fluency

We encourage students to think about these competencies when creating a resume, cover letter, or other application materials for internships or jobs. It is important that a student be able to address these areas in an interview setting and when networking with other professionals. Showing that you have a mastery of these skills can help set you apart from other applicants.

Career Ready Videos


Learn more about the eight career ready competencies.

Resumes

A resume is a very important tool for your job search. This information will help you understand different types of resumes, and help you decide what to include in your resume. There are also sample resume headings and key action verbs for your use.

Resume Videos

Find more DIY resources for drafting a great resume.

What Can I Do With This Major?

WCIDWTM Logo Red

This powerful resource connects majors with potential careers. Each major offers a list of common career areas, typical employer types, and strategies to maximize career opportunities in that discipline. At the bottom of each major page, view a variety of links to find websites with more information about related careers.

Networking and Social Media

Research shows that as many as 90% of open positions are filled as a result of networking. The contacts you make, if cultivated and used wisely, can lead to future employment. Everyone has a network; it’s just a matter of thinking broadly and creatively about who is in it. This includes past and present friends, family, neighbors, teachers/faculty, employers/coworkers, members of professional societies, employers who come to campus, alumni, religious affiliations, etc. In addition, the ever-evolving world of social media has opened up countless new ways to network virtually with virtually anyone.

While some people seem naturally more comfortable and adept at approaching strangers, engaging in conversations and building relationships, many others approach the task of networking with uncertainty and apprehension. Keep in mind that networking is a skill, and like most things, it can be learned, practiced and improved over time.

Five Steps to Successful Networking

Step 1. Understand that networking is really just a process of meeting people and having conversations. It's not a sales call and it's not a job interview.

Step 2. Be directive, but not forceful. Since you are typically the one who generated this interaction, you need to be ready to help steer the conversation. Have some questions in mind beforehand about the person's career path, their organization and advice they may have for you. Let the dialog flow from there.

Step 3. Be appreciative. You should always respect the time and efforts of the people you interact with. That means be brief if you call without scheduling a meeting, be on time if you do have a scheduled meeting and be attentive at all times.

Step 4. Follow up. You should always send a follow-up after meeting someone. This can be in the form of an email, a mailed letter or even a connection request on LinkedIn. If the meeting was in a formal setting, the follow up should have the tone of a "thank you" letter.

Step 5. Maintain the relationship. The follow up doesn't stop with an email or LinkedIn connection. Look for opportunities to reconnect on an occasional-but-ongoing basis in the months and years that follow.

Networking and Social Media Videos

Social Networking

The use of social media in career-related activities has increased dramatically in recent years. These relatively new outlets can benefit you in several areas, including information on trends and news, serving as a place to locate jobs and internships and expanding your network. There is a wide array of social media sites that you can utilize and the popularity of each will change as technology and trends dictate. We recommend you consider the following:

  • LinkedIn.com –This professional networking site provides you the opportunity to establish a professional online identity, participate in conversations on relevant topics, and make connections with professionals in your industry or career path. Key tip: To get the most out of LinkedIn seek out and participate in LinkedIn groups of interest.
  • Twitter.com – This microblogging site may be most widely known for its use by media outlets and celebrities but can also be a great way for you to interact with people of similar professional interests from across the globe. Additionally, companies are increasingly using Twitter to promote jobs and internships. Key tip:  Use “hashtag” searches (e.g. #jobs or #internships and) “follow” companies of interest to find opportunities.
  • Facebook.com – This social networking site likely needs no introduction or instruction on usage.  Be sure that your activities on Facebook won’t give prospective employers “red flags” about you as a candidate!  Check your photos, videos and comments for professionalism. Key tip:  Utilize Facebook’s privacy settings to disallow public viewing of tagged photos, wall posts and other aspects of your profile (or make your profile entirely unsearchable).

There are a variety of other tools and sites that you can use to develop your personal brand and incorporate into your job search strategy, including blogging (Wordpress.com, Blogger.com) and participating in sharing networks (Slideshare.com).  Like most career-related activities, you should initiate these as part of a larger strategy to emphasize your personal skills and values.  Explore opportunities and decide what avenues are best for your goals.

Find more information on Networking and Social Media.

Internships

Internships are a great way to gain real-world work experience and test-drive a potential career while building a marketable resume.

Internships can also help you to:

  • Network with professionals
  • Develop and enhance your professional skills
  • Get more job offers
  • Find a job more quickly after graduation
  • Acquire a higher salary in your first permanent job
  • Focus or confirm your career goals

Internships may be completed for academic credit in most majors. They may be paid or unpaid experiences.

Internship Videos

Online Internship Resources

Internships.com

Find more information on internships.

Job Search

Whether you are looking for a first time career or to make a career change, we have many resources to help you with your job search.

Hire A Bearcat

Hire A Bearcat is Northwest’s online recruiting system. Students and alumni may view jobs and internships, sign-up for interviews, upload resume/job search documents and be included in resume referrals.

Job Search Videos

Online Job Listing Sites

Online Employer Databases

Find more job search resources.

Interviewing

The interview is one of the most important parts of your job/internship search. It will usually be the employer’s first chance to have a conversation with you. Likewise, it is your opportunity to convince the employer that you are the right person for the job/internship. The employer wants to learn about you, your experience and qualifications. You will want to learn about the organization, job opening and the duties/responsibilities of the job/internship. PREPARATION and PRACTICE are the keys to a successful interview. Preparation encompasses knowing yourself and your skills as well as an understanding of the position and the organization/employer.

Regardless of the format (phone/video or in-person, one-on-one or panel), most interviews take place in this common sequence:

Information: This includes introductions and a few minutes of small talk to set the tone of the conversation
to follow. Often includes a brief summary of organization and position.
Qualifications: Questions and answers about your qualifications for the position.
Conclusions: Explanation of the next steps in the selection process.

Interview Tips

Interview Videos

Big Interview

Northwest has a new online tool for students to learn about and practice interviewing. Use your Northwest credentials to create an account and start learning today!

Learn more about interviewing.

Off Campus and Virtual Events

For a list of upcoming off campus and virtual career fairs and events visit this page.

Event Success Videos

Evaluating Job Offers

Salaries, Salary Negotiation and Relocation Resources

Videos

Learn more about evaluating job offers.