Career Development Process

Career Development Process

As a university community, we support students engaging in diverse career development-related activities to help them discover potential career paths that capitalize on their unique passions, talents, and interests.   Career development should be an exciting journey for each student. We view your student’s career development journey as a progression composed of experiences both inside and outside of the classroom, which enable them to decide who they are, who they want to be, and what careers might best suits their personal needs.

While each student is unique, here is a general process we encourage students to engage in to help them discover potential career paths that might be viable for them once they graduate.  Depending on the needs students present, career advisors in both the school-based career centers and the USC Career Center are prepared to share student-friendly resources to support them every step of the way.

Step 1: Self-Assessment

Self-assessment is the first step in the process. This involves students identifying their values, interests, skills, and personality.

Step 2:  Exploration

Exploration is the second step and involves conducting research, such as using career library resources, to discover potential careers of interest. Informational interviews are a great way to start building a network of people in jobs and industries they are considering.

Step 3: Reality Testing

Reality testing is the third step and provides an opportunity for students to job shadow, find an internship, or volunteer to “test the waters.” It is also an opportunity to conduct more informational interviews with professionals at work.  During this very important stage, students should start understanding how their preferences adn skills relate to certain career paths, work environments, etc,  and begin making realistic decisions on next potential steps in their career journeys.

Step 4: Implementation

Implementation is the last step in the process. This can include preparation for a job interview or completing applications to graduate school. This process involves practicing interviewing, networking, revising resumes, and writing cover letters.

It is not uncommon to feel uncertain about any or all of the steps described above.  Please be assured we are here to support students every step of the way.

The Career Center is open for both virtual and in-person advising Monday through Friday from 8:30 am – 5:00 pm.  Students may schedule a one-on-one appointment with their school-based career centers  or connect with an advisor from the USC Career Center by using the scheduling tool in connectSC located under the “Advising Appointment” tab.

In addition to pre-scheduled appointments, drop-in advising services are available both virtually and in-person between 12:00 p.m. to 3:00 p.m. Monday through Friday.   Virtual drop-in advising services are provided through our Brazen platform.  Our in-person drop-in advising is conducted in the Student Union, Suite 110 (University Park Campus).

Note: All virtual drop-ins will be conducted privately on-line through our Brazen platform, and all in-person drop-ins will be conducted in the Career Center Lobby in accordance with social distancing guidelines.