How You Can Help Your Student

Some of the most valuable things parents can do to help a student with career planning are to be open to ideas, try to help your student find information and reserve judgement. Here are some ways you can help:

  1. Encourage your child to visit Career Services. Reassure your student that Career Services is not just for seniors, and meeting with a career counselor can take place at any point (and should take place frequently) in his or her college career.
  2. Advise your student to write a resume. Suggest your student get sample resumes from Career Services. You can review resume drafts, but recommend that the final product be critiqued by Career Services.
  3. Challenge your student to become occupationally literate. Encourage him or her to research a variety of interesting career fields and employers.
  4. Allow your student to make the decision. It’s okay to make suggestions about majors and career fields, but let your student be the ultimate judge of what’s best.
  5. Emphasize the importance of internships. Having relevant experience in the job market is critical. A strong recommendation from an internship supervisor can often tip the scale of an important interview in that applicant's favor.
  6. Encourage extracurricular involvement. Part of experiencing college life is to be involved and active outside the classroom. Interpersonal and leadership skills—qualities valued by employers—are often developed in extracurricular activities.
  7. Teach the value of networking. Introduce your student to people who have the careers or jobs that are of interest. Encourage your student to shadow someone in the workplace to increase awareness of interesting career fields.
  8. Help Career Services. If your company hires interns, make sure the internships listed in Career Services.