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An excellent way to begin your search for career information is to check the resources provided by the U.S. Department of Labor: the Occupational Outlook Handbook and America's Career InfoNet'sResource Library.
Occupational information includes the nature of the work, the entry requirements, the rewards and benefits, and the outlook for the future. If your career interests are linked to a particular industry, such as travel and tourism or food service, you might want to check Industry and Company section too.
When you select a career field that fits your interests, skills, values, and personality type, research shows you are more likely to be satisfied with your choice. Engaging in self-assessment helps you become more confident that you are choosing the right career direction.
Career Advice sites provide tips on how to be more effective so that your good work is noticed. Learn how to solve everyday problems, too, such as dealing with a difficult co-worker.
There are estimated to be more than 30,000 job search sites worldwide, yet only about 10% of job seekers (usually technical types) get their jobs from online sources. Some sites list jobs by profession (e.g., Engineerjobs.com, Accounting.com, Hospitalityonline.com) and by types of job seekers (e.g., Collegegrad.com).
Check out the job board's confidentiality and privacy policies. Get a separate E-mail address to use during your job search and avoid posting your resume on newsgroups.
Many sites offer useful suggestions for sharpening your resume and succeeding during interviews. Check them out for tips that you can use, especially if you are doing a plain text or scannable resume.
Before any job interview, research the company Web site. In addition, you can see if a particular company has job openings that fit your skills. Industry information will help you see broad trends and identify fast-growing areas.
Industry Associations are excellent information sources. Browse The Internet Public Library’s Reference section, which contains “Associations on the Net.”
Do an electronic database search, searching local and national newspaper and magazine articles published within the past two years. Ask your librarian to help you. Often these articles can be emailed to you.
Some Popular electronic databases are:
Salary information comes in many forms: average salary, entry-level salary, and professional-level salary. There is always a broad range of salary offered in any field depending on one's skills, years of experience, and whether there is a high or low demand for workers. JobWebdoes annual surveys of salaries offered to four-year college graduates. Note that many positions in the New York City area pay more than the salary listed on the Internet. Using the site's "salary wizard" you can easily calculate and adjust for geographic location.
What kind of jobs can I get with my major?
Some majors, such as Physical Therapist Assistant, correspond directly to a specific job or occupation in the work world. Other majors, such as Computer Science, Business Administration, and Liberal Arts, are broad academic fields. These majors are designed for transfer to four-year schools. If you select a major that provides a general introduction to a broad field, you must do some additional research to narrow down your interests and examine specific occupations and jobs. If you are unsure about what options exist in your major, ask your professors, coop advisor, or counselor for suggestions.
What kinds of jobs are available for business administration and business management majors?
Business is a broad career field. Jobs in business are categorized by specific organizational specialties, such as marketing, human resources, sales, and finance. At the two-year college level you learn about business in a general way. If you go to a four-year program in business, such as programs at Baruch College, you will see a wide variety of business majors that specialize in specific business areas: Accountancy, Computer Information Systems, Economics, Finance and Investments, Industrial/Organizational Psychology, Management, Marketing Management, Operations Research, Public Administration and Statistics.
How can this site be useful to me?
As you explore various links, you will gain more in-depth knowledge of your career field and learn about the various career options within your major.
What are some of the reasons to conduct career research?
The mass media, such as TV and films, often provides an unrealistic picture about a particular career. Your research will provide you with accurate facts. You will not only know the outcome of your years of study, but you may decide to make a switch after you get more information.
Is career research hard to do?
No, the links that this Web page provides will steer you in the right direction. However, you may have to try several links and a few sessions before you find all the information you need.
Which Web sites are most reliable?
The most reliable sources of career information are provided by the U.S. Department of Labor: the Occupational Outlook Handbook and the Career Guide to Industries. College career services sites, such as LaGuardia’s career page and University of California at Berkeley’s site, have shifted through hundreds of sites to provide the best ones for college students. Non-profit professional organizations (ending with “.org “) often have up-to-date career information. Finally, the two mega-sites, The Riley Guide and the Job Hunters Bible have built solid reputation for providing reputable links.
Who sponsors the site and what is its purpose?
Is there a contact person whom I can e-mail with questions? What indications do I have of the quality of the contact (e.g., excellent reputation, background, and credentials of author or organization). Good bets are professional associations; links provided by a college career-services site; and well-known brand names with reputations to protect, such as the Wall Street Journal, U. S. News & World Report, or the College Board.
When was the site last updated?
This is particularly important for sites with job listings, because you don’t want to waste time applying for jobs that are already filled.
What are the privacy safeguards?
Before you give personal information such as your Social Security or credit card number, check with your counselor, instructor, or advisor. Web fraud is real.
Is there a cost?
Before you pay for any service, check to see if you can get that service for free at LaGuardia. We offer resume workshops and provide current job listings. We also offer self-assessment inventories so that you can get a better understanding of your interests and personality. You have the added benefit of being able to review your results with a counselor.
Career Information Links, created and developed by Delwar Sayeed, LaGuardia Community College.