career centre
If you’ve never stepped foot in your university’s career centre, you’re missing out. Source: Daniel Leal-Olivas/AFP

If you’ve never stepped foot in your university’s career centre, it’s about time you did. These centres typically offer a plethora of resources that university students can tap into to help them transition into the working realm.

Many university career centres offer counselling or resources that can help students improve their résumé, establish a career plan or improve their interviewing skills, to name a few, which can give them a leg up in the job hunt.

A career centre can help university students develop employable skills

Whether you’re a first-year or a final year university student, make it a point to explore your university’s career centre and see what they have to offer. Their offerings will likely vary by university, but here’s what you could expect:

Discovering yourself

If you’re torn about your strengths, your university career centre can help you discover your interests and strengths. 

Depending on your university, there may be counsellors on hand to conduct career interest profiling and personality tests that can help you better understand yourself and identify your skills, interests and values, which could help you decide what kind of job would be a good fit.

career centre

As a university student who’s about to graduate, it’s easy to feel lost about where you fit in the working world, but your career centre could offer some respite. Source: Sean Rayford/Getty Images North America/Getty Images via AFP

Résumé and cover letter writing

A résumé and cover letter are important in helping you secure an interview for an internship or a full-time job with a potential employer. So, what happens if you lack the experience to include in your resume? 

What information should you include or omit? How do you best sell yourself on paper that would convince an employer that you’re the perfect candidate for a particular role? What’s the right format to use? Your career centre could help you do that and more. 

Nail your interview technique

It’s normal to feel nervous during job interviews, but as with anything in life, practice makes perfect. Chances are, your university’s career centre could have the resources that would help you improve, either by having career counsellors on hand to guide you, or by offering workshops and seminars for you to learn from career experts, from how to dress to preparing for common interview questions. 

career centre

A university career centre will likely offer the resources to help you explore career paths. Source: William West/AFP

Explore career paths

Many university students are clueless about what they would like to do upon graduating from university. A university career centre will likely offer the resources to help you explore career paths.

The University of Toronto, for instance, offers a “Job Shadow Programme” which allows university students to test drive a career by visiting a professional — or a job shadow host — in their workplace. 

“Job shadowing will help students gain insight into an industry or career, better understand how classroom learning can be applied to work outside of academia and learn more about the skills and educational requirements needed to follow their career interests,” notes the university on their website.