The BSOS Career Plan will provide you with a road map of suggested activities to help you be successful post-graduation. Start with "Assess Yourself" below and click on the links to build your action plan.
Explore your academic interests, assess your interests, and identify engagement opportunities.
Start exploring your interests
- Enroll in courses that pique your interests
- Attend workshops on choosing a major or identifying your skills through Career Discovery Zone
- Join campus clubs (i.e. academic, social, or personal interests) to meet new people
- Begin planning to gain experiences (i.e. research, study abroad, student leadership or volunteerism)
- Conduct informational interviews with alumni on the Terrapins Connect
- Review careers related to BSOS majors
- Career values self-inventory. Review/analyze your responses by completing this Career Values Debrief exercise.
- FOCUS2 online offers self-assessments for skills, interest, values, etc.
- Skills inventory, determine your current strengths and make a plan to gain more skills within your major courses
- Career assessment options, offered by Career One Stop
- O*NET® career exploration includes an ability and interest profiler
Connect with employers and alumni
- Attend employer information sessions to share your skills- they are open to all undergraduates
- Visit an organization of interest in a small group through the Career Shuttle program
- Develop a resume that highlights your current skills and have it reviewed
- Conduct informational interviews to compare how your values match other career fields
- Connect with BSOS alumni ask questions about their field of work and skills required
Learn about occupations and career fields that might be a good fit with your interests, natural abilities, personal values and overall personality characteristics and start preparing to apply for co-curricular opportunities.
READ about career options
- BSOS Major Exploration sheets lists career titles related to each BSOS major.
- Use the Occupational Outlook Handbook or O*NET Online to research career titles you find interesting (use the search box for quick results).
- Log into FOCUS2 to review “What can I do with a major” section or take an online career assessment to connect career options.
- Read about over 100 different industries you could be working in.
- Use Vault to download industry guides that includes tips on how to break into the field.
- Review career path options of UMD alumni by using LinkedIn’s Alumni tool.
- Start reviewing job and internship openings in Careers4Terps to identify skill requirements.
- As you read about interesting options, make a note of all of the position titles or career paths that you find appealing.
TALK to professionals in the field
- Now that you have a list of career options, find professionals working in those fields and request informational interviews to learn about recruiting trends, entry-level points, and special perks about the field. Not sure what to ask? Check out these sample questions.
- Terrapins Connect- alumni have volunteered to share their career story and review resumes. It is the easiest informational interview you will ever schedule!
- Career Panels- learn about an industry, current openings, and how to best present yourself for job and internship positions.
- Career Shuttle- take a ride with a small group of students to visit a field/organization for half a day.
- Career & Internship Fairs- attend to learn about and gather information on potential careers.
- Intern For A Day- sign up to shadow a professional on your career interest list (the Career Center usually offers over 150 options).
- Road Trips to the Real World- visit an organization for a day with a small group of students over winter break.
- Attend BSOS’s speaker events and your academic departments programs to meet alumni and learn about new career options. Sign up to receive email updates from their Blog.
PREPARE to gain experiences
- Develop (or clean up) your professional online image by highlighting your accomplishments and skills on your LinkedIn profile.
- Develop an industry specific resume for the career areas that are remaining on your career interest list and have it reviewed by a University Career Center staff member.
- Explore co-curricular opportunities that allow you to experience a career field of interest:
- Update your Careers4Terps account and create a “Saved Search” to receive weekly emails with internship opportunities in your field of interest.
Engage in experiential opportunities to test your interests, network with professionals, and gain valuable skills.
Determine the type of experience that meets your needs.
- Internships- usually a semester long commitment, 5-15 hours a week.
- Global experiences- study abroad, for example. a semester long commitment; planning usually starts a year before departure date.
- Research- generally a commitment of up to one year, but it can vary; on-campus or off campus opportunities.
- Be a leader on-campus- low time commitment; join a campus club and apply for a leadership role.
- Volunteer/Service Learning- one weekend a month to semester long commitment; varies by program; a chance to give back to the community.
- Part-time job- ongoing basis, paid positions; on and off campus.
Make a plan so you are ready to apply for opportunities/programs.
- Develop a resume to apply and request a resume review appointment.
- Draft a cover letter.
- Create a 30-second elevator pitch and develop your brand.
- Sharpen your interviewing skills through a mock interview.
- Careers4Terps, review opportunities for BSOS students listed in this online job and internship database.
- EDCP 108i: Academic Transitions to Internships is a 7-week (half-semester) course recommended for students who have never had an internship and are actively searching for one- 1-credit online course.
- Connect with your academic department to stay informed of opportunities.
- Search strategies, start your internship search.
Continue to explore career options by talking with professionals and alumni. There are so many options!
- Conduct informational interviews to explore career paths and identify skills in demand.
- Connect with BSOS alumni ask questions about their field of work.
- LinkedIn Learning, gain a new skill and test your interest by completing an online training video.
- Attend career events to network with employers at information sessions, career shuttles, and fairs.
- Make connections with faculty in your area of interest and seek mentors outside of the classroom working in your field of interest.
- Initiate a plan for your post-graduation adventure (graduate school, working full-time, gap year experience, etc.).
Start planning your next steps.
- Identify your career interest(s) or develop a plan for exploring options.
- Choose 2-3 search strategies to implement and reserve time in your schedule to devote to each. Schedule a career consultation appointment with the University Career Center @ BSOS to assist in your planning.
- Careers4Terps: Update your profile and create a “Saved Search” to receive weekly emails with job opportunities in your field of interest. Participate in on-campus recruiting through Careers4Terps.
- Network with employers at information sessions, career shuttles, and fairs and stay in touch with connections you made last year.
- Analyze your skills and the skills required by your field of interest to identify any gaps. Then explore opportunities that would enable you to gain those missing skills. Consider applying for a gap year type of experience or a one to two year fellowship.
- Continue to research organizations of interest and interact with your target organizations prior to a position being posted.
- Plan for your financial future with these tips.
- Considering graduate school? Review these tips.