Ohio University

Career Development

Students conversing at fair.

Your career development starts with discovering your passions as you gain new skills and experiences, beginning with your first classes freshman year. Russ College graduates are in high demand, and with many employers recruiting in the fall for positions starting after graduation in the spring, it’s never too early to start planning your career path.

Your curriculum includes our Career Orientation course (see below) on resume writing, interviewing strategies, career fair success, networking and using LinkedIn, job search tips, and job offers and salary negotiation. We also offer workshops at the start of each semester on resume building and interviewing.

Here are some tips on how to explore career development throughout your college career:

  • Join a Learning Community that’s relevant to your major
  • Schedule an appointment with a career counselor in the Career and Leadership Development Center in Baker University Center to discuss your major and career plans if you’re still unsure about your major
  • Learn more about yourself by taking career assessments available through the Career and Leadership Development Center – you’ll gain insight into how your interests, skills, personality, and values connect to a major and career
  • Register for ET 1910 during the semesters you participate in the co-op or internship program
  • Complete ET 1500, Career Development, before graduation
  • Write a résumé, cover letter, and reference sheet
  • Conduct informational interviews with professionals to learn about different career paths
  • Attend career fairs, employer information sessions, meet and greets, and guest speakers to learn more about career options
  • Get involved with Russ College student organizations
  • Explore the possibility of assisting faculty with research
  • Check into PACE (Program to Aid Career Exploration) positions for next year with the Office of Financial Aid for next year; applications are due in spring

Sophomore year is critical for locating a co-op, getting involved with faculty research, and applying for PACE positions.

  • Continue to complete activities listed for first-year students
  • Register for ET 1500, Career Development, if you haven’t completed the class yet and plan to co-op
  • If you’re already active with the co-op and internship program, update your résumé, personal, and academic information in Bobcat CareerLink.
  • Increase your networking by attending career fairs, meet and greets, information sessions, guest lectures, informational interviews, and networking with personal connections
  • Establish a networking list of people you know through professional connections, your friends, your family, etc., for co-op/internship connections
  • If you’re still unsure about your major, schedule an appointment with a career counselor
  • Continue to complete activities listed for second year
  • Participate in a mock interview with a career counselor in the Career and Leadership Development Center
  • Maintain and update your career-related documents: résumé, cover letter, reference sheet, social networking accounts, and portfolio
  • Obtain a meaningful co-op or internship before you start your senior design capstone course next year; this is your last chance to do so unless you’re willing to delay graduation for an extended co-op
  • Utilize your Bobcat Career Link account to apply for co-ops and internships
  • Attend career fairs, meet and greets, information sessions and other events to set up your networking efforts
  • Research and visit graduate schools and take admission prep courses and tests
  • Use the services offered through the Ohio University Alumni Association: Bobcat Mentor Network and various local chapters of OUAA
  • Continue to complete activities listed for third year
  • Utilize your Bobcat Career Link account early in fall semester, as described above to start applying for full-time positions
  • Complete graduate school exams, visit programs, and have all application materials submitted earlier than the programs’ deadlines
  • Maintain and update your career-related documents: résumé, cover letter, reference sheet, social networking accounts, and portfolio
  • Update your networking list and begin to use it to connect with possible job openings
  • Attend career fairs, meet and greets, information sessions and other events to set up your networking efforts
  • Participate in a mock interview with a career counselor in the Career and Leadership Development Center
  • Learn market trends and salary expectations for your industry and career interests -- a good place to start is the U.S. Department of Labor’s Bureau of Labor Statistics Occupational Outlook Handbook
  • Explore the Ohio University Alumni Association for networking opportunities
  • Graduate school offers are usually extended mid-March through mid-April; if you have not visited the school(s) after being accepted, do it soon, because you want to make sure the program and location are a good fit
  • Find a place to live for after you graduate

Career Course: "ET 1500: Career Orientation"

You need to learn and demonstrate basic career skills prior to entering the work force. Career Orientation, ET 1500, helps you do that, whether you seek a co-op, internship, or a full-time position. In fact, you must complete it before becoming a co-op candidate. If you entered Ohio University fall 2012 or after, ET 1500 is required.

Topics Covered

  • Career decision making
  • Writing résumés, cover letters, and references
  • Basic interviewing and behavioral interviewing skills
  • Professional dress
  • Negotiating a job offer
  • Developing a personal brand
  • Skills employers want in new employees
  • Job search strategies
  • Using social media
  • Developing hard copy and online portfolios
  • Professional etiquette
  • Networking
  • New employee etiquette and managing annual evaluations

Typical Assignments

  • Complete a self-assessment inventory
  • Write a self-assessment reaction paper
  • Write a brief paper exploring career options
  • Conduct interviews with two professionals
  • Write a short paper on professional interviews
  • Write a resume, cover letter, and reference sheet
  • Participate in a mock interview
  • Attend a career fair or other professional event to practice networking skills
  • Develop a basic online portfolio