Gaining Career Experiences
Why is Experience—the second phase of the CLA Career Management Model—so crucial to you as a liberal arts student?
- It helps you explore academic and career options through doing.
- That doing can help you settle upon — or decide against — a major or career.
- Perhaps most importantly, experience builds your Core Career Competencies and related skills, so that you can demonstrate your career readiness to prospective employers or graduate/professional school admissions committees.
Ways to Gain Experience
Internships give you a perfect opportunity to connect your education and career goals.
Employment on or off campus is a valuable way to develop your Core Career Competencies. Finding work that is related to a career or field you are exploring can be especially beneficial for building competencies and knowledge that will be essential to your success.
Leadership is a highly sought-after competency— among employers, graduate/professional school admissions committees, and others.
Learning abroad and away opportunities hold so many benefits, including the chance to further develop Core Career Competencies and gather critical experiences that signify career readiness.
Getting involved in student groups is a fantastic way to gain experience and develop Core Career Competencies. You will work alongside fellow students to get things done and create positive changes.
Volunteering offers many of the same benefits as other experiential activities. It allows you to not only develop Core Career Competencies but also explore various organizations, career paths, and work settings in a fairly low-key way. Volunteering also gives you the opportunity to create positive change in your community.
Pre-internship projects are short-term, professional assignments at local employers that help make students more competitive for future career opportunities.
Micro-Experiences are short-term experiences that give an initial insight into a position or career of interest.
There are many ways for you to gain experience as a CLA student, far more than you might be aware of. As the University of Minnesota’s comprehensive Student Engagement website also shows, you have lots of experiential paths to explore.
Keep in mind always that Handshake is available to you as a comprehensive resource for finding specific experiential opportunities you can pursue.
Remember, too, to document and reflect upon your many experiences using RATE™ (Reflect-Articulate-Translate-Evaluate)!