New Year, New Programs, New People!

By: Carley Foster

If you’re entering your Sophomore, Junior, or Senior year at UNC Charlotte, chances are the college experience doesn’t seem all that shiny and new anymore. The excitement and anticipation of the new academic year might be dampened by buying textbooks, the hassle of moving into a new residence hall (or your first apartment) or standing in line for a parking pass.
On the other hand, if you happen to be a Freshman, the first week of college is probably exciting, nerve-wracking, and confusing all at once. Wherever you are on your academic journey, you can be sure that there are tons of new services, organizations, and activities on campus for you to experience. The University Career Center is no exception, and we are excited to share with you some great opportunities to take advantage of as you start your new year at UNC Charlotte.

University Professional Internship Program (UPIP):
Are you looking for relevant work experience?
Would you like to build your resume by completing an internship?
Would you like to get paid for it?

If so, the University Professional Internship Program, or UPIP, might be for you! UPIP is designed for undergraduate students to gain valuable work experience and explore possible career choices in their field right here on campus. Students in UPIP work with their academic department for either academic credit or a 49ership (non-credit, but noted on your transcript). To apply for the program, students must be able to work 10-15 hours per week, must be enrolled in a minimum of 12 credit hours during the semester of the internship, and must have good academic standing. Sophomores, Juniors, and Seniors have until August 30th to apply, and internships will begin in September. Check out our Fall Newsletter if you’re interested in learning more.
Washington Center Internships: Sophomores, Juniors, and Seniors with a minimum 2.75 GPA are able to apply for a Washington Center Internship. This internship is tailored to the student’s individual interests, and they are awarded a $6,000 scholarship. The best part? Students chosen for the Washington Center Internship will be studying and completing internships in Washington, DC! If you are interested in applying, October 1st is the deadline for the Spring semester. Remember to make an appointment with the University Career Center to receive feedback on your resume and cover letter before you apply! You can find the application by visiting this website.

New Career Advisors: If you have never paid a visit to your major’s career advisor, there’s no time like the present! The University Career Center recently welcomed new career advisors:
Megan Corkery, Assistant Director & Career Advisor for Engineering, Architecture, and Physics
Stephanie Saunders, Assistant Director for Freshman Career Planning
Neal Robinson, Assistant Director & Job Search Advisor
Tori Stevens, Assistant Director for Career Education

Career Advisors are great resources as you begin thinking about your career after college, whether you are about to graduate or just getting started. If you are interested in making an appointment, stop by the University Career center during our drop-in hours to set up a time to meet with a career counselor for your major. For more information, visit our staff directory.

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Maximize your career success with the: Career Success Certificates Program

By: Lashauna Harris

 

What is it?

Many students are looking for a sure- fire way to maximize their career success and the Career Success Certificates Program does just that. Students are aligned to complete several career developmental activities through the University Career Center and campus partners in exchange for a certificate that not only rewards them for their commitment, but can also be listed on their resume. The Career Success Certificates are a great way to begin setting yourself apart from the rest and create a competitive advantage for you in the job market.

The Certificates…

ASSESS: This certificate track will allow you to learn more about yourself and your career aspirations, while doing some very important goal-setting.

EXPLORE: This certificate track sets you up to learn more about your future career options by simply exploring what’s out there.

EXPERIENCE: This certificate track is where you will begin to gain more career-related experience making you more marketable.

TRANSITION: This certificate track prepares you to take action for what’s next (job, grad school, etc.).

What does it require?

Basically, students will complete activities (campus events, internships, career counseling, etc.) as outlined in the Menu of Activities, obtaining signature verification for each activity on the participant score sheet. The great thing about the program is that there are no deadlines! Students can work toward the certificate at their own pace, or even choose to work toward more than one. This program was redesigned to be flexible and personalized in the sense that each student creates their own path to completion.

Not hooked yet?

Visit  career.uncc.edu for more information and review the program FAQ\’s.

Where to sign up?

Just complete our Registration Form!

“I’ve never heard of NinerJobNet…”

By: Sara Ingram

This seems to be the most common response when talking to students about our NinerJobNet service. Well, I’m here to clear it all up!

NinerJobNet is one of the most beneficial and easy-to-use resources at UNC Charlotte. I’m making it my responsibility, right now, to show each one of you how easy and wonderful NinerJobNet can be. Welcome to NinerJobNet SIMPLIFIED!

1. How should you start with NinerJobNet?

Easiest beginning point: attend an orientation session in the Career Center. The next orientation sessions will be:

  • November 17th from 11:00am – 11:45am
  • November 23rd from 1:00pm – 1:45pm
  • December 1st from 11:00am- 11:45am

If you are not able to make it to one of these nifty sessions, click here: NinerJobNet Orientation Online  (if you are having trouble opening the hyperlink, press your “Ctrl” button and then click).

2. Now what?

  • While attending an orientation session, you will be asked to fill out a few forms. If you do not attend a session, follow the instructions at the end of the online tutorial for printing out and signing our “Ethical Behavior” sheet. Turn this into the Career Center a.s.a.p.!

If you are interested in working in a part-time job off-campus, you must also fill out our “Job Location and Development” sheet. This can be found at the front desk of the Career Center or here!

  • If you are interested in a Co-Op, that information can also be found here.

3. Once all of your forms are turned in and you have established your free NinerJobNet account, time to browse! Upload your resume through the “Documents” tab at the top of the NinerJobNet database homepage (this is the Experience page). Under the “Documents” tab choose “Upload a Document”. This will give you a few choices of types of documents you can upload.

  • Remember, your username will always be your 800# and your password is “uncc”, unless you choose to change it once you’re logged into the database.

4. Now that your resume, cover letter, and/or writing samples are uploaded, send them out to any employers that might catch your attention! Take a chance, try new things. Never feel that you have to take a job with the employer you interview with. Sometimes, it takes getting to that point to decide that it is just not a good fit. Thank them for the opportunity and their time, but politely decline their offer with your reasons as to why you feel you are not meant for their job.

5. After you’ve applied, interviewed, and landed that perfect job, let us know! Visit us here to report your job placement in JLD, and here to report an internship. Your career advisor will be in contact with you to develop learning objectives and goals for your new internship. These should be completed and turned into your advisor by two weeks after your hire date.

  • You might wonder why you have to complete this step. It’s simple; it helps us make the process easier and better for students in the future. We learn what we are doing well that helps you and what we might need to improve.

6. That’s it! You’ve mastered NinerJobNet and found a job that’s going to teach you many new, beneficial, transferrable skills. Enjoy! And tell all of your friends! Spread the word and teach them how to use it. They’ll owe you a giant “thank-you” in the end.

Happy hunting!

(More extensive and detailed information regarding Experiential Learning and NinerJobNet can be found here (EL), here (JLD), and here (NJN).)

Steps to Career Fair Success

By: LaShauna Harris

Picture yourself walking into a career fair dressed to impress, resumes in hand, ready to make some new connections and suddenly you’re surrounded by hundreds of anxious students, some there to claim the very same position that you are. You ask yourself: What do I do now? How do I stand out? Well if you are like many students you may know the purpose of a career fair, but you’re somewhat unaware of what to do when you get there. No worries! There are three simple steps to career fair success. I call them the Three I’s: Investigate, Inform, and Impress.

Investigate: When preparing for a career fair one of the most important things that you can do before hand is research the companies participating in the fair and the positions being offered. Know why you’re there! From the participating companies select the ones of interest and compatibility to you and do some research. Look at the positions being offered and evaluate whether or not you’re what they’re looking for. You don’t want to land the interview and then discover the position is not for you.

Inform: At the career fair, employers will often inform you about their company and available positions, but if you’ve followed the first step then this should be old news. Use this opportunity to score some extra points and show the employers you are already informed. Know why you’re qualified! Being prepared will give you the opportunity to share some of your skills and qualifications with the recruiter. Remember to make good eye contact and to speak with confidence; if you are unsure then they will be also.

Impress: Sometimes being prepared and qualified just isn’t enough to get you the interview. The employer is going to be talking with multiple students who have equal ability and some of the same experience as you. A few may even be better qualified. Know why you’re the better choice! There are other aspects of you that may interest the employer and ultimately distinguish you from the rest.  It’s important to be professional when approaching them, but it is just as important to show some personality. You don’t want to be perceived to be the ordinary applicant; bring some energy to your discussion.

I recently attended the Experiential Learning and Part Time Job Fair and utilizing the techniques that I’ve given you here, I landed an interview on the spot. These steps are essential; and trust me, if they can work for me they can work for you too!

Preparing for Spring 2010!

It’s hard to believe but the Fall semester is coming to a close! Now a lot of students are preoccupied with preparing for numerous exams, while also looking back at the Fall semester and deciding how the Spring semester will be better. Using the checklist below, you can get a jump-start on Career Planning. Below are suggestions for simple things that you can do over break, which will go a long way in making the Spring a little less stressful!

Checklist:

____ Develop your resume (use our online template service “Optimal Resume”–which can be found on our homepage http://www.career.uncc.edu)

____ Meet with your Career Advisor: If you are still in the area, Winter break is a great time to meet with your advisor. The Career Center is open on most days during the break, and advisors have more available appointments for students!

____ Begin Searching NinerJobNet: Start looking at Internship opportunities that interest you over the break. Because of the current economy, students may have to apply to more internships that they expected. By getting a head start and applying early, you have a much better chance to landing the internship you want most!

These are really simple things that can be done at anytime during your Winter Break, and by getting a head start, the Spring semester may be a little less hectic!–ebs

Here to Help: Meeting with Your Career Advisor

How is the Career Advisor different from my Academic Advisor? How do I find out who is my Career Advisor?

Every semester, around registration time, this is a rush among students to meet with their advisors. Some students meet because they just need their registration holds removed, while others feel lost–unsure of what courses they should consider next. While seeing an academic advisor is very important, students should not stop there. The Career Center also offers advising–career advising, that is.

Unknown to many, each student is assigned a Career Advisor based on their major (or lack of major). Students can meet with their Career Advisor to discussing choosing a major, gaining experience, resume writing, the job search, and much more. A Career Advisor will not tell you what coursework you should take, but they can discuss how your choice of a major (and minors) can determine what fields you can enter after graduation. Career Advisors can help students through the career development process, which is essential for post-graduation success. It is strongly encouraged that students meet with their Career Advisor early in their academic career, and to meet with them as often as needed.

Students can meet with their Career Advisors by making an appointment for a 30 minute session, or students can stop by during drop-in hours. Drop-in’s are a chance to sit down and speak with an advisor for a brief session of 10-15 minutes, with no appointment needed. Students who are interested in completing a self-assessment can also meet with a Career Advisor to go over the results. These sessions are usually 1 hour. Students who are preparing to apply for internships or full-time work also have the opportunity to participate in a Mock Interview with their Career Advisor! This is a chance for students to get instant feedback on their professional appearance and interviewing skills. As stated, Career Advisors are here to help student in every step of the way! It is so important that students take the opportunity to meet with an advisor!

To find out who is your Career Advisor (or to make an appointment), call our front desk at 704-687-2231. Students can also check out this link: http://career.uncc.edu/staff.cfm?type=advisor&sort=last_name. –ebs

Hitting the Net: NinerJobNet

What services do you have to help students find jobs/internships?

With Winter Break and December graduation quickly approaching more and more students are worrying about finding work. Lets face it, finding a job in this economy is no easy task, however, the University Career Center (UCC) strives to help students make the task less stressful and more efficient.

One of our most popular services offered at the Career Center is NinerJobNet. This is an online job database, that hosts job shadowing opportunities, internships, co-ops, and part/full-time job postings. The best part of this database is that it is ONLY open to UNC Charlotte students and alumni (up to 3 years after graduation). So, instead of competing with thousands from all over the company, students compete against a much smaller pool of candidates. Also, employers who use this database are specifically looking for UNC Charlotte students!

NinerJobNet also hosts JLD listings. JLD stands for Job Location and Development. These are part-time positions offered to CURRENT UNC Charlotte students, which do not relate to students’ majors. These jobs can range from marketing work, retail, to working in the restaurant industry. This is a great tool for students who want to pick up some extra money.

Through NinerJobNet students can explore various career opportunities by interviewing and observing employers. This available to students using our Career Prospector (job shadowing) program. Students with NinerJobNet access can sign-up with employers who are willing to host students. While this is a fantastic learning opportunity for students, it is also a great way to network! It is well-known that networking is one of the best (and easiest) ways to find and land job opportunities.

Students can also use NinerJobNet when searching for internship opportunities. By participating in career-related internships, students can earn an addition $5-$10,000 on their starting salary! Internships are found using our NinerJobNet database, as part of our Experiential Learning Program (EL). These internships DO NOT count for course credit (those internships are handled through your academic department), however these internships can be put on your transcript as an “official” internship. Some internships are paid, while others are not based on the employer. These opportunities are always open to UNC Charlotte students, and it is just a matter of looking for an internship that fits your intended career path. It is important to remember that internships can often lead to full-time work! 

The database also houses a ton of full-time work opportunities. Employers are eager to hire UNC Charlotte students. Many of these employers attend our job fairs, as well as participate in On Campus Interviews. By signing up for NinerJobNet, you will have access to the job opportunities and you can sign up for On Campus Interviews!

NinerJobNet requires that student attend an orientation session, either online or in our office. Once students have completed the orientation, their account with NinerJobNet will be activated. Once enrolled, student can upload their resume and begin searching for opportunities! It’s a great resource that can really make the job/internship search much less intimidating and frustrating. Casting a wide net is vital in a tough economy, so use all of the resources available! ebs

Making the “Major” Decision

I am a sophomore and I still don’t know what I want to major in, HELP!

This statement is one of our most frequently heard at the Career Center. Many students begin their university studies without any idea about their intended major, and that is perfectly normal! Even students who begin at university with a selected major find themselves re-evaluating their choice. As a matter of fact it is estimated that  80% of students will change their major at least once during their undergraduate experience! When it comes to choosing a major, students should take time for serious self-reflection, using all available resources. The choice of a major undoubtedly is one that will have the most influence on the success of your undergraduate experience.

Some resources that may be useful include WCIDWAMI cards. These are cards available at our office or online, that represents a major offered at UNC Charlotte. These cards hold information about what the major is, what career options there are for students with that major, and resources about joining professional associations!

The UCC also offers four self assessments, Focus-2, Bridges, the Strong Interest Inventory, and the Myers-Brigg Type Indicator. These assessments are designed to better help students understand themselves in relation to specific areas of study and career paths.

Both Bridges and Focus-2 are online career exploration and planning programs. Focus-2 helps you better recognize your values, interests, and abilities through a series of questions. Students can also use Focus-2 to explore all majors offered at UNC Charlotte, as well as more than 800 career options. Both Bridges and Focus-2 are open to all UNC Charlotte students, but are particularly useful for freshman, sophomore and transfer students. Both of these online assessments provide you with results immediately; however it is recommended that you make an appointment with your Career Advisor to discuss the results in more detail.

The Strong Interest Inventory (Strong) and the Myers Brigg Type Indicator (MBTI) In order to take this assessment, students are strongly encouraged to come in for a drop-in BEFORE taking the assessment. This is recommended so that students can have an initial consultation and be advised to take the assessment best suited for them. These two assessments require that students make an appointment with their Career Advisor, or attend a designated workshop, in order to get the results. These two assessments not only indicate what field of study may be of interest, but also what type of work environment you would prefer. The Strong and MBTI also provide students with insight into their own personality and preferences.

These are just a few ways that students can explore major options through the Career Center! The most important thing for students to remember is that you should choose a major that fits best with your values, abilities and interests. Once you’ve figured out what those values, abilities and interests are, the choosing of a major is a lot less daunting.  -ebs