The F. David Fowler Career Center concluded the School’s first-ever, required Career Roadmap course for Global MBA students – jump starting their job-search preparation with instruction on writing resumes, crafting LinkedIn profiles and handling interviews.
The course, which was taught to first-year GMBA students and wrapped up earlier this month, was aimed at not only improving students’ knowledge of job-search techniques and strategies, but helping them assess their skills and develop plans for managing their careers early in their MBA training. It was taught by Career Center instructors.
A similar course was offered to undergraduates last year. The MBA version kicked off this summer, before regular classes started.
“This was a very practical course,” said Toni Della-Ratta, the Center’s associate director of graduate career management services. One obvious benefit, she said, is that the course provided a structure within which MBA students were required to write resumes and perform other job-search-related tasks that they might otherwise postpone until later in their course of study.
During the nine-part series, students conducted self-assessments; prepared written documents such as cover letters and resumes; developed plans to market themselves; and attended networking events and career fairs. They used the tool Interview Stream to record themselves during mock interviews and sent the links to their coaches for assessment.
Social media was integrated into the course, with students receiving coaching on tailoring and presenting profiles on LinkedIn, the online professional network.
“Employers are actually hiring off of LinkedIn profiles,” said Della-Ratta.
One overall lesson the instructors tried to impart, she said, is that today’s employers are increasingly looking for very specific skills, as opposed to hiring for general business positions. That means students must carefully target themselves toward a particular industry, company or job that interests them.
“Many persons are coming back to get an MBA to change careers,” she said. “What worked for them in the past might not work for them in their future.”
The Center has surveyed students on what they learned from the course, and their level of satisfaction. Those results are being tabulated.