Mission

The mission of the Office of Career Development is to assist students with their Career Readiness through innovative and tailored programs, services, and strategic partnerships in the community and our broad alumni network.

Vision: To equip students with the skills necessary to explore, discern, and engage in purposeful careers that meet their personal and professional needs as well as enabling them to be men and women for others.

The role of the Office of Career Development is to serve the needs of students and alumni of Spring Hill College, assist faculty with professional development programming and liaise between job seekers and employers.

Services

For students, we offer individualized services with resumes, cover letters, social media, assessments, individual appointments and workshops, and seminars. Career Development coordinates multiple graduate/professional school and employer recruitment over the course of the year.

Career Readiness Competencies

The career readiness of college graduates is an important issue in higher education, in the labor market, and in the public arena. Yet, until recently, “career readiness” had been largely undefined, making it difficult for leaders in higher education, workforce development, and public policy to work together effectively to ensure the career readiness of today’s graduates.

The National Association of Colleges and Employers, through a task force of college career services and HR/staffing professionals, has developed a definition, based on extensive research among employers, and identified eight competencies associated with career readiness. (Details about the research are available here.)

Career Readiness is the attainment and demonstration of requisite competencies that broadly prepare college graduates for a successful transition into the workplace. Competencies can be developed through student leadership, civic engagement, and employment/internships. Job seekers are encouraged to consider how they can expressly demonstrate career competencies when writing resumes, cover letters, and while interviewing.

This table expresses employers value of each competency.

Source: NACEweb

COMPETENCYPERCENT OF RESPONDENTS
Professionalism/Work Ethic Demonstrate personal accountability and effective work habits, e.g., punctuality, working productively with others, and time workload management, and understand the impact of non-verbal communication on professional work image. The individual demonstrates integrity and ethical behavior, acts responsibly with the interests of the larger community in mind, and is able to learn from his/her mistakes.
97.5 percent
Critical Thinking/Problem Solving Exercise sound reasoning to analyze issues, make decisions and overcome problems. The individual is able to obtain, interpret, and use knowledge, facts, and data in this process, and may demonstrate originality and inventiveness.
96.3 percent
Oral/Written Communications Articulate thoughts and ideas clearly and effectively in written and oral forms to persons inside and outside of the organization. The individual has public speaking skills; is able to express ideas to others; and can write/edit memos, letters, and complex technical reports clearly and effectively.
91.6 percent
Teamwork/Collaboration Build collaborative relationships with colleagues and customers representing diverse cultures, races, ages, genders, religions, lifestyles, and viewpoints. The individual is able to work within a team structure and can negotiate and manage conflict.
90 percent
Information Technology Application Leverage existing digital technologies ethically and efficiently to solve problems, complete tasks, and accomplish goals. The individual demonstrates effective adaptability to new and emerging technologies.
72 percent
Leadership Leverage the strengths of others to achieve common goals, and use interpersonal skills to coach and develop others. The individual is able to assess and manage his/her emotions and those of others; use empathetic skills to guide and motivate; and organize, prioritize, and delegate work.
55.9 percent
Career Management Identify and articulate one’s skills, strengths, knowledge, and experiences relevant to the position desired and career goals, and identify areas necessary for professional growth. The individual is able to navigate and explore job options, understands and can take the steps necessary to pursue opportunities, and understands how to self-advocate for opportunities in the workplace.
45 percent

FIRST DESTINATION

The results for the First Destination Survey of the Class of 2021 have been finalized. Six months after graduation, we were able to report outcomes for of the cohort. 

Job Hunting Resources

The Career Development Center will help you prepare for any employment opportunity by helping you with your resume/CV/cover letter, preparing you for the interview, and showing you how to build your professional network.

Handshake is a valuable tool! In this easy-to-use mobile app, you can find amazing jobs and internships and keep up with Career Development Center events.

Handshake:

  • Represents the primary recruiting platform for more than 300,000 employers of all shapes and sizes, including all of the Fortune 500 companies.
  • Lets you tap into a network of large companies, start-ups and nonprofits that spans all 50 states and 165 countries.
  • Makes it easy to find potential jobs and internships through its search tool. More than 700,000 internship and job opportunities were shared in the last year.
  • Lets you market yourself to employers by creating a professional profile that will help you stand out.
  • Sends you personalized career recommendations based on your interests and network to identify new opportunities.

Ready to get started? Click HERE to Get Started using Handshake!

Additional Support

If you need additional support, take a moment to review the Handshake Help Center. Handshake representatives are readily available troubleshooting for you! You can reach out by selecting the Help link in the blue navigation bar at the top of your Handshake screen. You can also contact Career Development at careerdevelopment@shc.edu or at 251-380-3474 for any questions.

Please note: Handshake is best viewed with Chrome, Firefox, IE and Safari.

  • LinkedIn is a business-oriented social networking service that helps users develop and manage their networks. Connection with alumni, keep up with classmates, colleagues and search for jobs.
  • AmeriCorps is a voluntary civil society program supported by the U.S. federal government, foundations, corporations, and other donors engaging adults in public service work with a goal of “helping others and meeting critical needs in the community.”
  • AfterCollege has become the largest career network for college students and recent graduates. Featuring 400,000 entry-level jobs and internships from 25,000+ employers.
  • Going Global is the premier job search engine for those seeking careers abroad. Search by location, market sector, or job title. The resource also contains country profiles, financial and economic trends, interviewing tips, and much more.
  • Idealist is all about connecting idealists – people who want to do good – with opportunities for action and collaboration. With more than 100,000 registered organizations, Idealist helps people move from intention to action all over the world.

Managing Social Media

LinkedIn is the best global platform for professionals. The tool allows professionals to connect with current and former colleagues, network contacts, employers, professional associations, and hunt for jobs. Users are able to customize profiles to highlight their skills, education, and experience. Nearly 90% of employers will look for your social media. Stand out for all the right reasons.

LinkedIn University

LinkedIn University has resources to help college and university students develop a strong social media presence. Tutorials include:

  1. Creating Your Student Profile
  2. Job/Internship Hunting
  3. Networking on LinkedIn
  4. Communicating Your Goals
  5. Engaging with Employers
  6. Building Your Brand

SEVEN TIPS TO LAND A JOB WITH  SOCIAL MEDIA

  1. Create relevant profiles
  2. Network with those in your (intended) industry
  3. Be active on social media (follow, like, comment)
  4. Be a connector for others
  5. Prove yourself worthy of being offered a job
  6. Use more than one site to job hunt
  7. Develop a strategy to prevent job seeker burn out (identify 3-5 jobs, apply, search for 3-5 more)

Source: Forbes

8 months

Average number of months in advance of start date that employers begin recruiting interns

23.6 days

Average time from interview to offer

45.6%

Conversion rate from intern to full-time hire

$18.73

Average hourly wage for an intern

Source: NACE

Social Media Matters

Here’s what keeps people from getting hired

   46% – Inappropriate or provocative pictures or content     

   41% – Evidence of drinking or drug use   

   28% – Discriminatory or culturally insensitive posts

   21% – Inappropriate screen names

Why HR uses social media when considering applicants

   65% – Want to see how you present yourself professionally

   51% – Asses your fit for the organization

   45% – Learn more about your qualifications

It’s not just what you post on social media. Be aware of how others include you in their posts.

Exploration

Whether you are trying to figure out your life or just your major it is hard to make decisions without information. Our primary goal is to provide each student and alumni the information they need to make an educated decision.

We strive to have the resources to identify career pathways for which you are eligible and help develop workable strategies to ensure the success of your personal and professional goals.

This report uniquely integrates detailed job interest information from the Strong Interest Inventory with personality preferences from the Myers-Briggs Type Indicator® for all clients starting a career, considering a career change, looking for career enrichment, or seeking a better work-life balance. It offers a complete career development picture, based on a combined interpretation of clients’ professional interests and their personality. The Strong and MBTI Career Report are used for career planning, career guidance, and leadership development.

Part of being career-ready is developing a broad awareness of career pathways linked to your academic program(s). What Can I Do With This Major? identifies not only what alumni are doing with the same degree as you, but lists strategies building your candidacy, professional associations, and job boards. The websites included in the links section provide additional information about each major and the occupations commonly associated with it.

Assess your skills, interests, and values and match results to the latest job market data. Find out what careers are trending, skills requirements, and salary information down to the ZIP code! The Department of Labor tool can help you with your job search, resume, interview, and salary negotiation.

RESUME AND COVER LETTERS

Types of Resumes

COMBINATION

Ideal for entry-level professionals. The Combination format allows the job seeker to front-load their resume with skills, education, and experience relevant to the position to which they are applying. Employers are looking for a demonstrated work ethic. However, that Summer job as a camp counselor may not be as beneficial as the volunteer and class-oriented medical experience. Inform the reader that you are familiar with the field by listing what is relevant first (education, certification, experience), followed by activities. Typically, no more than one page in length.

REVERSE CHRONOLOGICAL

The most common layout for experienced professionals. Use this once you have established yourself in the field. Sections typically follow this order Experience, Service, Education/Training, Skills, and Activities. Typically, no more than one page in length.

FUNCTIONAL

If you are transitioning careers and have little to no experience for the targeted role, you might benefit from a functional format. This layout allows the job seeker to identify and express experiences in previous positions that will enable them to be successful in the intended role. Identify the top 3-5 skills essential to the role (i.e. project management, communication, financial management, etc.) and support them by sharing current and past accomplishments and responsibilities. Typically, no more than one page in length.

CREATIVE

Creative resumes are attractive and unique to the individual, yet should be limited in their use. They work well for those entering creative jobs (graphic design, marketing, film, etc), but can send the wrong impression in a traditional business environment (accounting, quality control, data analysis, etc.). Creative types often have a web portfolio to display their design, photography, and written work. It is strongly suggested that a creative resume mimic the stylistic theme of the website. Typically, no more than one page in length. Just depends on the size of the paper.

FEDERAL

Federal resumes are similar to reverse chronological and the Curriculum Vitae. However, the writer needs to include the number of hours worked per week and their annual salary for each position. Requires as many pages as it takes.

CURRICULUM VITAE

Literally translated, this is your life course. They are most frequently used in education, leadership, and higher level careers (professors, attorneys, physicians, executives, etc.). It will include everything relevant to your career path: education, certification, licensure, research, honors/awards, publications, presentations, experience, service, professional associations, and institutional and community service. Requires as many pages as it takes.

Cover Letters

Applying for work can be an intimidating process. Too often, job seekers become overwhelmed with the process. Some of us battle with negative thoughts that obstruct our progress. Practice a positive mindset. Change your inner dialogue from “I probably won’t get it.” to “Why not me?”  and follow through on jobs that appeal to you. Until you receive a job offer, you haven’t gained or lost anything.

A proper cover letter will use the same heading, typeface, font, and formatting as your resume. You are essentially creating your own stationery. Consistency is key. Cover letters are generally one page in length. Use the process outlined below to help you create a cover letter for each position to which you apply.

Review the Job Description

  • What are the educational requirements?
  • How much experience is required? Preferred?
  • What skills are required? Preferred?
  • What is the organization’s mission statement?
  • How does the advertised position fit the mission of the organization?

Writing the Cover Letter

  • How does your academic background match the educational requirements?
  • How does your experience meet the required/preferred requirements?
  • How do your skills meet the required/preferred requirements?
  • What specific examples from your education and experience can you communicate that demonstrate the skills sought by the employer?
  • How will you help the organization meet its goals?

Cover Letter Tips

  • Be cordial & confident.
  • Use an active voice.
  • Avoid using “I” statements.
  • Use a formal business letter structure. Formatting is identical to your resume -your personal stationery.
  • Know who will be receiving the letter and address it to them. (Tip: If not indicated in posting, search LinkedIn or call the company and request the name of the individual heading up the job search.)
  • Put your writing skills on display. Draw a connection from your skills, education, experience (and passion, when appropriate), to the advertised posting. Yet, avoid regurgitating what is on your resume.
  • Make it personal. Create a digital signature: sign, scan, crop, & insert. Note: A digital signature should be different from anything you use for banking and contractual purposes.
  • Convert to PDF and (e)mail with your resume.

Structure

Opening ParagraphIndicates the position to which you are applying. State how you learned of the position. If through an inside contact or mutual acquaintance, state such. Communicate why you want to work for the organization. Share what you know about the company.

Body (one or more paragraphs) – Draw the connection between your skills and qualifications and the tasks to be performed in the role. Share how you overcame challenges to be successful in previous roles.

Closing – Thank the reader for their time and tactfully let them know that you want to discuss your qualifications for the posting (and other employment opportunities). Make yourself available for an in-person or phone interview. Feeling assertive? Let them know what day and time you will be calling to discuss scheduling an interview or meeting. And then, do it! Be prepared to leave a message if they are unavailable.

Thank You Letters

Part of becoming a professional is setting up your office. You may not have a home office just yet, however, there are some basic supplies that you should always keep in stock. High-quality paper, folders, and envelopes for your resume and thank you cards. A spirit of gratitude is said to be correlated with a sense of happiness and well-being. Take a moment to consider all of the people that have passed through your life and left an indelible mark. Odds are the list is longer than you first thought. Consider developing a new habit: Write and send one thank you card per week to some on your list.

Why Should I Send a Thank You Card?

We don’t often express appreciation enough. People tend to remember those from whom they receive cards. Expressing appreciation beyond casual comments.

When Should I Send a Thank you Card?

Send a thank you card anytime someone impacts your professional development. It’s best to do so within 24 hours of the event. Here are a few appropriate scenarios:

  • Review and help you improve your resume.
  • Provide advice or insight about a particular company.
  • Facilitate a connection or a job or business lead.
  • Offer to be a reference for employment.
  • When you’ve wrapped up a major accomplishment on which they advised or assisted.
  • Following a formal or informational interview.

Can I Send an Email Instead?

Sure. It’s always good to let others know that you appreciate their time. Cards often leave a stronger impression. The same principles apply to a thank you email as they do a card.

EVENTS AND NETWORKING

Badger Expo

The Spring Hill College Office of Career Development is pleased to invite you to the 2021 Badger Virtual Career Expo.

This virtual event will take place over 2 days and will be organized broadly by industry:

To find a complete list of majors, please click HERE.

With several undergraduate and graduate degree programs, employers across all industries will find the talent they need. The 2021 Badger Virtual Career Expo will be hosted on Handshake’s virtual career fair platform. The virtual platform will allow your organization to hold 10-minute group and 30- minute one-on-one sessions and participation from multiple representatives. If you are new to Handshake’s virtual fair experience, click here to view their Virtual Fair Launch Kit.

Please make sure that you register as soon as possible- there is NO registration fee! If applicable, please update your Spring Hill College Handshake organization profiles to ensure we can communicate with the correct representatives. You can contact the Office of Career Development at careerdevelopment@shc.edu for assistance.

An Afternoon with an Employer

Our Afternoon with an Employer program allows professionals to share their experience and expertise with students preparing to launch their careers. This event will take place in the heavily trafficked Barter Student Center lobby during Common Hour, between 11:30 AM and 1:15 PM, on Tuesdays and Thursdays. This is the best opportunity for recruiters to reach students as they are out of class. This is an opportunity for employers to engage and recruit students, share company information, career insight, and career opportunities with students in person on a smaller scale.

Interested in hosting an information session on campus? Please complete the registration form below.

Workshops

Interested in hosting a workshop? We are always actively looking for employers, alumni, and community partners to engage and network with our students. 

Opportunities include:  Workshops, Guest Lectures, and Mentoring

  • Critiques (Resumes, Cover Letters, LinkedIn)
  • Interview Preparation
  • Financial Awareness
  • Job/Internship Search Strategies
  • Mock Interviews
  • Networking
  • Professionalism

If you’re interested in hosting a workshop, please email careerdevelopment@shc.edu

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