Portland Community College Portland Community College | Portland, Oregon

Career development process

It’s not a one-time event!

Use the career development process like a compass to find your way

Career development is a lifelong process in which you make and refine decisions based on your continual learning about you and about the changing world of work. Identify where you’re at in this process to find resources and plan your next steps:

Self-assessment

Take a class

CG140A: Career & Life Planning
Provides tools and resources for making informed career decisions. Covers assessing career confidence and readiness, skills, values, interests, personality, barriers, lifestyle, education and approaches to decision making. Covers how to research career information. Includes educational decision-making which covers determining a field or program of study, and college or training program. See CG140A in the class schedule.

Research occupations

Take a class

CG130: Today's Careers
Exposes a wide range of occupations including educational and skill requirements. Covers ways of gathering information about specific occupations. Includes guest speakers from a variety of careers to further illustrate the realities of the world of work. See CG130 in the class schedule.

Try it out

  • Conduct informational interviews
  • Join a student organization
  • Identify and connect with professional associations.
    • A professional association is a group of people in a specific career field. They often provide educational info, job boards, scholarship opportunities, and career information. Many have great resources available on their websites, and you can often join as a student member and connect with people who are in the field you are pursuing or considering.
    • How do you find one? Just google professional associations in your career field. (They might also be called “organizations”, “societies”, or “institutes”.) Some are national, but you can sometimes find local ones as well (use Oregon as a keyword in your search).
  • Get an internship or volunteer position
    • Idealist: find volunteer and internship opportunities

Job search

  • Identify potential employers
  • Create targeted resume
  • Prepare and practice for interviews
  • Develop your network and social media presence
Take a class

CG209: Job Finding Skills
Explores broad range of job search techniques, including building a job network, compiling appropriate information for job applications, targeting cover letters and resumes, typical interview questions and techniques. Promotes overall understanding of the job search process. See CG209 in the class schedule.