Five Ways to enhance your career while still in school (with Career Week)
Have you thought yet about what you’ll be doing after graduation? At colleges such as Centennial College, the focus is on giving you the skills to succeed in the career you want. It’s up to you to take those tools and turn them into that career, and to do that, you’ll want to get the ball rolling before school itself is finished. Luckily, Centennial can help you take the steps you need to take with our Career Week, happening this year from November 5 to November 9 across all campuses, and you can read a schedule of events here. There’s job fairs and networking opportunities present (and here’s a guide to how to do your best at those), but we’ll also be helping you learn essential skills during a series of special workshops that’ll empower you to do what you need to get your career journey on its way. Here’s how Career Week can help:
1. Learn how to budget
For one thing, managing your money is useful in your life when you’re not on the job, and it’s a skill every student, and every person should have. But it’s also a transferrable skill that you can take to almost every workplace you go to, and you don’t have to be in an accounting program (though you can do that too). During our Career week, we’re hosting a budgeting workshop November 5 as 12:30 PM, in the Progress Campus Fireside Gallery, to help you learn this skill.
2. Research the jobs that are out there, and think outside the box
Even if you’re not actively job-hunting, it’ll (quite literally) pay off to take the time to investigate what sorts of job opportunities your career can get you before you graduate. More importantly, you should research some less-common job types and locations. Maybe you’ll find something you weren't expecting. That’s why we’re hosting the “Discover Ontario” event on November 5 at 7 PM in the Fireside Gallery, where you can learn about the hundreds of opportunities and advantages to living and working in towns throughout rural Ontario. Along the same lines, the Canadian Armed Forces will be at three of our college campuses (Progress November 7 at 4 PM, Morningside November 8 at 4 PM, and Ashtonbee November 9 at 3 PM). If you’re studying aviation, transportation, health or information technologies, there’s plenty of interesting, unusual careers to be had in that area. Meanwhile, when it comes to career-specific opportunities, if you’re a business student, we’re hosting “What can I do with my Business Education?” November 8 at 5 PM at the Fireside Gallery, and if you’re studying journalism, “Broadcasting & Journalism Journey” November 7 at 4 PM at the Story Arts Centre.
3. Research what your next steps are after school’s out
Outside of just figuring out what kinds of jobs you can get, you should also take some time to figure out what, exactly you need to do to make your career happen when school’s done. There’s plenty of tools available to you, but you need to know what actions to take with them. Luckily for you, there’s a lot going on in Career Week related to that. First, there’s “Career Wellness,” happening across three campuses (Progress November 5 at 2 PM, Story Arts Centre November 6 at 2:30 PM and Morningside November 8 at 2:30 PM). It teaches you to move beyond the job search, and talks about the personal steps you can take to make your career journey more successful. Next, there’s “Rethinking Experience: Automation, resilience, and the future of work,” happening November 6 at 11:30 AM at Progress Campus, which focuses on looking ahead to how the job market will change in the future, and how you can prepare for it. There’s also “Build Resilience by Enhancing your Personal Brand,” November 8 at 2:00 PM in the Progress Fireside Gallery, designed for skilled, educated pros who want to learn how to enhance their personal brand (i.e what you say, do, and how you look).
4. Consider going into business for yourself
It’s a changing, complicated job market, and if you’ve got skills or ideas you think people want, you could start your own business and become self-employed. It’s something Centennial College supports, with ventures like our ACCEL internship. It’s something you can learn more about during Career Week, with our “Mythbusting Entrepreneneurship” session November 6 at 4 PM at the Story Arts Centre, "What's the next Step?" November 8 at 4 PM at the Story Arts Centre, and “Ide8ion Sessions or Entrepreneurship 101,” also November 8, at 11:30 PM at the Progress Campus Fireside Gallery.
5. Do some mock interviews
You’re going to be doing job interviews in your lifetime, so you might as well get your practice in. You've probably heard a ton of advice about how to prepare for an interview, but here’s something even more practical: A chance to learn from the experts in a safe environment, with “Mock Interviews with the Pros,” on November 6 at 1:30 PM in the Progress Campus Fireside Gallery. Professional recruiters will be there to show you what you need to bring to the table when you go face-to-face with a potential employer.
By Anthony Geremia