I’ve been studying a recent report by the Career Advisory Board to gain a better understanding of why career professionals think students don’t take ownership of their career plans and strategies while in college.
My hunch has always been that the culture of college doesn’t support it.
Students are focused on getting to know people, acclimating themselves to a whole new environment, dorm living, night life, faculty and the freedom to do whatever they want to do. They have hundreds of activities to choose from and very little direction from the college that they should start building their professional networks and career plans their freshman years, which flows into their sophomore, junior and eventually their senior years.
The survey was conducted by the National Association of Colleges and Employers (for CAB) suggests grads are CLUELESS about how to get a job!
Check out these numbers shared by four year colleges!
When asked if students have their resumes ready to start professional job searches:
- 9.4 percent strongly disagreed
- 43.3 percent disagreed
- 19.3 percent neither agreed or disagreed
- 25 percent agreed
- 2.8 percent strongly agreed
And the response from two year colleges was worse!
- 39.0 percent strongly disagreed
- 44.1 percent disagreed
- 8.5 percent neither agreed or disagreed
- 8.5 percent agree
- NOBODY strongly agreed!
Does this surprise you?
It did me, as resume development is the number one primary service many career centers provide. I didn’t interpret these numbers to suggest the career center is doing a horrible job in teaching students how to develop professional resumes, but as the result of a very small number of students who visit the career center. Don’t believe me? In a previous blog article, we shared that a NACE 2011 survey showed over 60 percent of graduating seniors either NEVER went to the career center or visited only 1 or 2 times.
That’s barely enough time to develop a professional resume!
So what can we do?
One of the solutions we’ve been working on for the past two years is an online resume course taught by the New York Times bestselling author Martin Yate. Martin helped us create a 3 session course that will give students a foundation in understanding the fundamentals of creating a resume and how to make resumes work for them. For career centers, it’s an incredible tool.
Instead of having to repeat the same information to 500 students over and over, students are encouraged to take Martin’s course, do the assignments and then go to the career center where career counselors can spend more time helping the student polish their resumes and take them to the next level. And because the course is available anytime, through any device, students can “fit” it into their busy schedules.
What do you think? Share your thoughts and check out our CareerCourses today!