Get a Head Start on Your Career Path
Knowing your career goal is an important predictor for success in academic programs. Once you’ve decided on a career path, developing skills and gaining experience can propel you to landing a rewarding job at graduation. You might also choose to pursue professional school or graduate training and need help with the admissions process. The more prepared you are, the greater your chances for success in finding and beginning your first career.
Eddins Counseling Group offers career planning services for high school students and college students to select appropriate educational programs, choose a major and career path, and launch their first career. Career planning is also available for identifying skills and experience necessary to compete for jobs, internships, and professional programs, including admission essay review and mock interview practice. Our career counselors have worked both in industry or human resource functions as well as college or university environments and understand what colleges, admissions committees and employers are looking for as well as the pressure and confusion of making your first major career choice.
Choosing a College Major
Choosing a college major can be an overwhelming decision for many students. Choosing a major can also impact which college you attend as some majors aren’t offered at every university. Career planning can save you a tremendous amount of time and money that can be lost changing majors or even universities. There are more career opportunities available than ever before, which can be exciting, but also overwhelming.
So, how do you choose a college major? The first thing to keep in mind is that you are just choosing an area of study. This does not seal your fate forever in a career you don’t enjoy, though it can impact your career options.
When it comes to choosing a college major, students often fall in one of two categories: either overwhelmed by the choices and unsure which is the best fit, or unaware of available careers except those he or she is exposed to such as doctor, lawyer, or parent’s careers. It can be challenging, even paralyzing to choose a major without knowing the exact job it will lead to in the future. Your career path is a journey that unfolds as you take each step. You don’t have to know exactly what you’re going to be doing, but rather which direction you want to move towards. As you move forward, you’ll become exposed to new opportunities that you’ve never heard of and gain experience that shifts your direction. So for now, keep the pressure off yourself about deciding the fate of your whole career. You don’t have to choose the exact career, just the field of study.
I was having a hard time finding the right person to lead me in the right direction, until I found Ms. Mullinax. She is a wonderful person and surely does a great job as a career counselor. She has completely changed my life in school. College student, career direction
Choose a College Major that Reflects Who You Are
If you choose something you find interesting, you’re more likely to do well, achieve better grades, participate more in related activities, and talk about your field of study with interest and enthusiasm. These factors can all increase your chances of landing an internship and ultimately, a job. Our philosophy is that you have a much better chance of becoming successful and even talented in something you’re good at that comes naturally to you. This helps to ensure your career success even in times of a down economy, industry fluctuations and other career challenges.
There is a balance between choosing something you can get excited and interested in and choosing something practical. We certainly want you to have opportunities for career success once you graduate. A career counselor can help you weigh these decisions based on the realities of the job market and your particular career interests.
To help expand potential career options while career planning, we often start with career assessments. Career assessment tests can help you identify fields of study and career paths that are likely to be a good fit for you. This information is based on your personality, interests, and strengths as it relates to other people with similar profiles who enjoy their careers. Working with a career counselor can be beneficial as your assessment results are interpreted in a way that is meaningful and unique to you. This career guidance gives you greater clarity in your career decision making process, which you can draw from throughout your career. You’ll have a foundation of knowing “who you are” and why certain choices work for you. Experience will teach you the rest.
Career Planning & Deciding on a Career
Deciding on a career can be difficult when you don’t have much experience to draw from. We recommend that you start by completing career assessments and working with a career counselor to understand “who you are.” Once you have this foundation you can begin to research careers and make some tentative career decisions. Your next step is to gain experience. You might start with extracurricular, volunteer, or internship opportunities. These can be great resume building activities as well as providing you the opportunity to try out your interests. You’ll be exposed to new career possibilities and discover the realities of others (some careers just aren’t what they look like on TV). Gaining this experience as a student will also prepare you for deciding on a career path and landing your first job when you graduate. Our career counselors can help you:
- Identify career paths to explore
- Find opportunities to gain experience
- Prepare for and find your first job through job search strategies, resume building, and interview practice
Pursuing Graduate or Professional School
Gaining admission can be very competitive for both graduate school and professional programs such as pharmacy, law, optometry or medical school. Our career counselors have worked with and participated on admissions committees (attended professional school ourselves), and helped numerous students navigate the admissions process. If you are on this path, you will definitely want to be clear as to why this is the best path for you. Admissions committees are looking for specifics and not general answers to this question. They want to know that you are passionate about this work, will be successful in the program, and reflect well on the university after you graduate. These are students are who committed and dedicated to their chosen field of study and set themselves apart from other students. Clarifying your career path with a career counselor can make it easy for you to articulate these reasons both verbally in an interview and through your written essay.
We can help you:
- Clarify why you are uniquely suited to this career path
- Write a well-written personal statement
- Develop a resume or curriculum vitae
- Prepare for your interview through mock interview practice
The advice that my counselor provided on how to reduce interview anxiety was incredibly valuable. Student, interviewing skills
Your candid assessment of my interview as well as your guidance on what to improve helped tremendously! I have been accepted into the college of pharmacy! N M L – student
Are You Writing Personal Statements for College or Graduate School?
Need to submit a personal statement as part of your application but aren’t sure what to write? We can help! A career counselor can help you identify possible topics for your essay and help you highlight characteristics about yourself that admissions committees value. Casey Radle is our expert in personal statements for college and graduate admissions. She has a proven track record of excellent writing and proofreading skills and would love to assist in:
- Coming up with attention grabbing introductions
- Identifying relevant, meaningful themes
- Structuring and organizing your essay so that it flows nicely
- Proofreading and editing
Your personal statement for college or graduate admission essay is one of the most important aspects of your application, spend the time it takes to show the reader what makes you unique. You want to show what commits you to the field you are applying for as well as how you will enhance the diversity of the student population. Address what aspects of the program appeal to you above other programs. Be concise and specific. Think about how your background, skills, abilities and goals match the school’s program and philosophy.
I really appreciate your help! I had a couple of physicians look at my statement but they didn’t help anywhere near as much as you have. – Medical School Applicant
Meet Our Career Counselors:
Joan has over 10 years of experience in career counseling and career change coaching. As a manager in the computer industry, she hired and trained multiple employees. As a result, she has a clear picture of the employment process from an employer’s perspective. She has also worked in the university setting helping students choose their major and find their first career. As a career changer, Joan understands the value of early career planning.
Alex has career counseling experience in both university and private sectors. She worked in the fields of corporate and international law for over seven years. Alex previously worked in the University of Houston’s counseling service, where she specialized in issues of depression, anxiety and life skills development. She is also highly skilled at helping students with college planning and admissions essays.
Becky has worked with numerous students and adults planning for a career and choosing a college major. She also helps those dissatisfied with their career choice in identifying strengths and skills to make a successful career change. If you are struggling with anxiety in your job search process, Becky can help you with tools and coping strategies to feel confident in the process.
Danya has experience with administering and interpreting career assessments for professionals and students in choosing or changing careers. She can also can assist in developing the skills involved in searching and securing employment, including resume writing and interview preparation. Danya can also assit those struggling with career indecision, by helping to identify the source of your indecision and provide you with information and strategies that will help you make a career choice that fits your personality and interests. She also has personal experience with making a career change when she made the challenging decision to leave a career in the oil and gas industry to become a counselor and researcher.
If you have any questions about our college and career planning for high school students and choosing your first major or career, call 832-209-2222, or schedule an appointment online to work with one of our career counselors in Houston, Tx.