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Gathering Information about Careers

Now it’s time to start doing some career exploration. You probably already have some career interests. What are they? How much do you know about these career fields and about specific careers within them? Did you discover some other career interests when you took your career/interest assessments at Career Services? Make a list of all possible careers in which you might be interested and keep your mind open toward other careers that you might encounter in the Career Exploration process and let’s begin. Write your list of careers in your portfolio.

Click here to review a checklist of questions you should ask and knowledge you should have when starting to explore careers.

Here are some ways to increase your knowledge about potential careers:

  • Investigate the resources of MSU’s Career Services Network including their latest edition of "Career Passport", their online guide to all things career-related. You can make an appointment online with a career adviser or just explore their website.
  • Go online. There are many great sites or just use a general search engine to look for information on a specific field. Here are some sites worth exploring:
    Occupational Outlook Handbook
    O*Net Online
  • A second way to do career exploration is to use hard copy sources such as are found in Career Services in 113 Student Services, or any library or bookstore.
  • Take the active approach in doing your career research. To get a realistic idea of what a job entails, job shadow a career professional or do an informational interview to gain more in-depth knowledge about a career area. MSU’s Career Services offers some very helpful suggestions on Conducting Informational Interviews.
  • A second active method of researching careers is to be actually involved working in the career field in the form of internships or volunteer experience. Check with departmental advisers, attend career fairs, and research internship opportunities. For volunteer opportunities, visit the Center for Service-Learning and Civic Engagement in Suite 345 Student Services.