Why should I
The Career Center provides students with a unique opportunity to assess their life priorities and developmental needs, gather current occupational and academic information, and to receive professional support in defining and achieving their career goals. Visit us and explore the state-of-the-art resources designed to help you, our students, succeed in your personal and professional growth.
Who is eligible
The Career Center is open to the community for occupational research and basic self-exploration. Career counseling services are available to students who are currently enrolled at GCC in at least one class and by appointment only.
One of the first steps in choosing a 4-year college is to select a major and identify the desired college criteria based on your individual situation and personal considerations. Next, collect facts to determine whether the institution offers your designated major, review the program curriculum, and evaluate educational standards important to you. Typically, these standards deal with such factors as college location, accessibility, quality of instruction, admission application procedures, tuition cost, accreditation, and financial aid availability. We recommend that students consult representatives from various California 4-year colleges and universities who are regularly available by appointment through the Transfer Center. Information regarding financial assistance may be obtained at the GCC Financial Aid Office. If possible, schedule a visit to the college of your choice for final and conclusive evaluation.
Majors play a key role in developing one's skills and specific knowledge in preparation for a satisfying career. Choosing the right major is essential to the career planning process. We provide several options for individuals to explore a major as well as step-by-step guidance in the decision-making process. All GCC students have access to comprehensive career assessment tools and counseling appointments. For those who prefer a class environment, we offer ST DV 125 and ST DV 145 - Career Planning classes.
How much time
Commitment to career planning is a personal decision and varies in length, depending on one’s individual needs and attitude. Involvement may be as simple as a visit to the Career Center, or it may require extensive investment of one’s time. Commitment to career planning increases greatly when you become aware of your interests, skills, personality style, and how they would relate to the world of work.
When considering a career change, you will find that self-exploration and thorough career research could be of great importance and value in helping you make the right choice. Upon assessing why you are thinking about starting a new career, take honest stock of your transferable skills, the skills you might have already developed in the course of your professional experience and could use in a variety of work environments. Ask yourself what knowledge based skills - the specific knowledge and expertise would be required for your new career and be prepared to enroll in classes to upgrade and expand your skill set. Define your work values and what career field would be most compatible to them. Finally, make out a list of what it would take to achieve your new career goal. Once you have set a goal, put the plan into action with the guidance of your career and academic counselors.
Planning a job
An effective job search requires effort, patience, and a focused approach for favorable results. After deciding what career field to target, research employment opportunities and identify employers who meet your needs and expectations and whose specific job requirements for the role you could satisfy. It’s important to develop practical self-marketing and networking strategies by analyzing your talents, past work experience, accomplishments, and applicable skills. Before you apply for a job, collect facts about the company and the position you are seeking, including a job description outlining duties and qualifications. Consider other related employment issues such as the salary range, benefits, advancement potential, location, work hours, and work environment. A compatible work environment is directly related to job satisfaction and should be regarded by an individual as one of the primary contributing factors into one’s sense of purpose and accomplishment. Evaluate whether you would need additional education or training to increase your employability and value in the eyes of employers. Volunteer experience and internships provide an excellent way to acquire job skills. Utilize resources available at public and career libraries to identify which career opportunities to target in your job search. Access job listings by searching job search banks, government and corporate web sites, and newspaper advertisements.
Maximize your efforts by applying the following job search tools:
- Prepare a resume that promotes your talents, abilities, experience, and education. Identify qualifications you possess and communicate your strengths to an employer. Convey any activities you participated in that exhibit your ability to work well on team projects and juggle multiple responsibilities competently. Offer concrete evidence of your position related accomplishments. Your resume summarizes your training and qualifications. It should be concise and accompanied by a cover letter, introducing you to the potential employer and expressing your interest in a specific position. Learn how to target and develop your resume by attending a Resume workshop conducted in the Career Center throughout Fall, Spring, and Winter semesters. Develop effective interview skills to convince the employer of your qualifications for the position. Familiarize yourself with the latest interviewing techniques by attending an Interview workshop. Ask Program staff for suggestions about additional resume writing and interview-preparedness resources available in the Career Center.
- Improve or strengthen your network system by initiating personal or professional contacts. The GCC Job Placement Center provides current job listings and acts as a liaison between job seekers and employers.
- Send a follow up letter after each interview. Thank the interviewer for the time and consideration and reiterate your interest in the position and in the employer.
- Stay organized and disciplined, keep accurate records, maintain a positive attitude - success can be achieved.
The Career Center is dedicated to assisting you in all your career development and job search needs. Take advantage of the services offered and allow us to give you guidance, support and encouragement in your job search.
How will economic trends affect
Plan ahead before investing time, energy and money into your education -- investigate future economic trends, job outlook, and labor market forecasts.
THE OCCUPATIONAL OUTLOOK HANDBOOK is an excellent source of forecast in economic and social trends for industries and occupations. Developed by the U.S. Department of Labor, it offers the job outlook over a projected 10-year period for the national job market.
Similar information may be found in the “Industries & Occupational Data” and “Interesting Facts” sections on the Career Center web site.
EUREKA database, which may be accessed in the Career Center, is another valuable source of information on fastest growing and declining occupations.
The BUREAU OF LABOR STATISTICS and CAREERJOURNAL.COM are among the web sites which address trends, issues and challenges in the workplace of the 21st Century.
EUREKA database provides detailed, step-by-step information on starting a small business. It covers issues dealing with market analysis, developing a business plan, financing your business, operating procedures, etc.
The best source of business ownership information may be found on the U.S. Small Business Administration web site at www.sba.gov.
THE U.S. DEPARTMENT OF LABOR has several links designed to assist small businesses in complying with rules, regulations, and laws.
Consider and review GCC DEGREES AND CERTIFICATES in order to develop business skills and knowledge about opportunities for future business ventures.
What is the value
Career assessment inventories evaluate your skills, interest, and values based upon information you provide about yourself. The objective of these surveys is to help students find rewarding and productive careers. The inventories serve as an excellent tool designed to assist individuals in identifying personal career guidelines and specific occupations to explore. Interpretation of the results and how they relate to one’s career plans is performed by a career counselor to offer support to the process of a career decision.