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Your journey begins with exploring your interests, values and strengths to define your career goal. The more self-aware you are, the more effective and engaged you can be in your job search and ultimately in your professional life. 

Having a clearly defined goal is key to moving forward in your job search journey. Remember, it's ok for your goal to morph and evolve while on your journey. Your goal will always stay true to your interests, values and strengths. 

Get to know yourself

Reflecting on the activities and environments that energize you, what beliefs are important to you, and what talents you bring to the world will provide you with clarity and inform your exploration of possible career paths.

If you know yourself, you can focus your job search efforts and save time by zooming in on what motivates you and makes you happy.

Get started using the CareerBound app, called Suitable in the app store.

Another key tool of self-exploration is the CliftonStrengths assessment, formerly known as Clifton StrengthsFinder, that will identify your natural talents. 

MGMT 295, a Career Readiness & Exploration course taught by career services center staff, will help you lay a solid foundation for the remainder of your journey. Some students have likened this class to a series of TED Talks where you’re constantly consuming new insights from experts in career preparation. Ask your advisor about when to register.



"I have used the skills I learned in MGMT 295 to great effect: I have a summer internship in Chicago, working in strategic sourcing solutions."

 — Alex Moore, Marketing '23


Discover jobs & industries that interest you

Center staff can provide you with best practices for researching the job market and opportunities that exist across functions, industries, and organizations. Our coaches and peer consultants will guide you in using the FIG (function, industry, and geography) framework, which will help you when defining your career goal. 

Explore industries by attending campus career fairs and company visits. 

Check out Purdue's Libraries and School of Information Studies Career Research Portal for further support of your discovery process. 



International Student Tip

Start following influencers on social media! We suggest Marcelo Barros and Kwan Segal.

“You have to network. Networking is what can get you an internship or your future job. The school does a great job providing resources to help students network.”
Edgar Del Real, Marketing '24

Start Building your network

Professional networks are powerful avenues to understanding job functions, industries, and your overall career goal. Learn important lessons and glean insider information from those who have already launched and are tending to their careers. 

Connect with professionals by building a great LinkedIn profile. According to Forbes, 95% of recruiters use LinkedIn during the hiring process. 

Whether they are active mentors or occasional contacts, alumni are an invaluable resource to every step of your career development path. Join Purdue Ties to stay engaged with alumni and find Boilermakers all over the globe. 

Here we provide you with sample emails you can use to model your first outreach to an industry professional, introducing yourself and asking for a short conversation. We've also drafted for you questions you can use when speaking with a professional for the informational interview. 


Career Progression

Preparing for your future career is so much more than polishing your resume and memorizing interview tips. Our clear path to success takes you from an exploratory phase where you define your ultimate goal to a final step where you grow your career with intention. 

Click on any of the pins to discover more.