Online Career Tools
We provide free, self-guided, online software to support students with each step of their career planning and development. Faculty and staff can create a student account to view the online tools and choose activities for class or advising activities. Some software allows for a faculty account so you can design assignments. Contact [email protected] for more information.
Focus 2 Career is an online, self-guided assessment service that provides valid and reliable assessments, including the Holland code (work interest), MBTI types (personality), values and abilities. Each assessment takes about 5 to 10 minutes to complete.
Students can combine their assessment results to explore career options and academic majors that align with their qualities. The career options provided are limited to the approximately 867 detailed occupations defined by the Standard Occupational Classification system. For help getting started, watch our instructional videos on How to Use the sections of Focus 2 Career.
Students must create a free student account using the access code: EAGLESLA
If you would like to help students explore which jobs relate to their major, the resources below can help them obtain information about the career possibilities. Additional resources are provided in our student resources under Explore Career Paths.
What Can I Do With This Major? helps students see common career areas they can enter with the major, typical employers that hire in this field and strategies to maximize career opportunities. The majors listed are general academic majors named by CIP code designation.
Vault Guide to Jobs includes industry guides, ranking guides and guides to key careers and industries.
Employers by Major lists employers in California who have hired grads within the major.
Candid Career provides video interviews with professionals in their careers. Students can explore career videos by industry, major, career titles and more.
CareerSpots videos provide career advice from industry experts. Channels include career-ready skills, job-search skills and student success stories.
We provide a free online résumé and letter builder called Skills First. This AI-augmented résumé builder helps students create modern, keyword-optimized résumés and employment letters (e.g., cover letters, interview thank-you letters, reference request letters). For help getting started, watch this video on Getting Started with the SkillsFirst Résumé and Letter Builder.
We provide a free online job interview practice system called Big Interview. This AI-feedback interview practice tool mimics a real-life interview, evaluates students' answers and provides feedback for improvement. Students can also participate in the training courses provided to increase their confidence.
Internship & Job Postings
Cal State LA Handshake is the campus job platform that connects students with student jobs on campus, off-campus part-time jobs, internships and entry-level careers. Employers hiring on Handshake are looking to hire Golden Eagles. In addition to employment, students can register for employer information sessions and career fairs. They can share their career profiles and network with peers and employers. For more about Handshake, watch their Campus to Career video and the How to Search for Jobs on Handshake video.
Create your free student account using your Cal State LA email.
Micro-internships are short-term, paid, professional projects that are similar to those given to interns or new employees at companies or emerging start-ups. Students apply for projects that companies post across their departments including technology, marketing and finance to name a few. Projects can include research and strategy, operations and support, IT and cyber, marketing and others.
Unlike traditional internships, micro-internships can be done year-round. Projects typically take 5 to 40 hours to complete and are due between one week and one month after you are offered the project.
We connect students with micro-internships using Parker Dewey. Parker Dewey provides short-term, paid, professional projects for college students and recent graduates. You will not have to negotiate pay, send invoices or create a contract as Parker Dewey manages these for you.
The Career Center provides an online job search tracking software called Huntr. This tool helps students organize their job search by tracking every detail about your job opportunities regardless of where you found them. Track contacts, notes, dates, tasks, documents, job descriptions, salaries, locations, company data and more. Students can add jobs across the internet using the Chrome browser and the Huntr Chrome Extension. For help getting started watch this video on Introducing Huntr Job Search Tracker and review the Huntr Job Seeker Guide.
- What is Career Readiness? (defined by the National Association of Colleges and Employers)
- Why Adopting an Agile Learning Mindset is Crucial for Your Career (Forbes Careers Contributor Heather E. McGowan)
- Context About the Future of Work and Learning (Forbes Careers Contributor Heather E. McGowan)
Education and Labor Market
- The Future of Jobs Report - Section 2.2 Forecasts for Labor Market Evolution in 2020-2025 (World Economic Forum)
- Projected Openings in Occupations that Require a College Degree (U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, Sept 2021)
- Education and Training Assignments by Detailed Occupation (U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, 2020)
- The College Payoff (Georgetown University Center on Education and the Workforce, 2021)
The resources below help students understand how to explore careers while in college in a way that aligns with employer expectations. For more support regarding choosing a major or career pathways, please visit our student resources under Career Exploration and Planning.
Career Planning: Gaining Experience While in College
- Professional Development Plan Timelines (presentation) This presentation introduces what students can do each academic year to gain experience in their major and career to help.
- Exploring My Major at Cal State LA (worksheet)
- Choose Your Own Career Adventure in College (worksheet)
- Professional Development Plan Template (worksheet)
Professional Identity Exploration
Professional identity is shaped by lived experiences, community cultural wealth, world-of-work skills, and profession-specific/major-specific skills. The college experience can give voice to students' professional identity in a future career.
- Cultivate Your Professional Identity in College (presentation) Help students identify how their lived experiences and community cultural wealth align with career readiness skills.
Professional Brand Development
A professional brand is how employers see students in the major and career. Students demonstrate their professional identity in classroom assignments and campus activities. These experiences are included in the college résumé, job applications and job interviews.
Our professional brand template helps students start telling their professional story, including introducing themselves to employers (elevator pitch) and creating résumés and cover letters. The scoring rubric can be used to evaluate how students can continue to develop their brand.
The resources below help students understand how to develop résumés and cover letters that showcase their college experience.
Brainstorming Skills, Experiences and Strengths
- Résumé Brainstorming Introduction (presentation)
- Résumé Brainstorm Worksheet (handout)
- Community Cultural Wealth and Career Readiness - Lived experience is valued by employers, and cultural knowledge and skills can help students discover how they can enhance a workplace. Review our presentation on how to Cultivate Your Professional Identity in College to identify how lived experiences and community cultural wealth align with career readiness strengths.
The College Résumé: Introduction, Samples, Worksheets, Scoring Rubric
- College Résumé Writing Introduction (presentation)
College Résumé Writing Introduction and Samples (handout) - Review this introduction, which includes action verbs and samples of various résumé types.
The College Résumé Annotated Sample (handout) - Use this sample to learn how to approach writing each section.
College Résumé Accomplishment Statement Worksheet (handout) - Use this worksheet to draft how you will talk about experience in the bulleted points.
The Customized College Résumé: Introduction, Checklist
The College Cover Letter: Template, Samples, Scoring Rubric, Customization
- Cover Letter Template (handout) - Review this template to understand the parts of the cover letter.
College Cover Letter Samples (handout) - Review these samples, which include various cover letter types.
- College Cover Letter Scoring Rubric (handout) - Use this to evaluate how to improve your cover letter.
- How to Tailor/Customize a Cover Letter Introduction (presentation) - Review how to customize your cover letter to the job position.
Interview Preparation Guide (presentation)
What should I wear?
If you know a student who is experiencing financial hardship that prevents them from purchasing professional clothing, please help them to apply for our Career Clothing Closet.
General Interview Questions
Situational Interview Questions
Behavioral Interview Questions
Closing the Interview and Following Up
Having effective search strategies will bring better results for students seeking internships, jobs or nontraditional career pathways. The resources below can help students advance their employment search. For more support regarding these employment for college students, please visit our student resources under Employment Search.
Handshake: College Student Job Board
Employers seeking Cal State LA students post jobs on Handshake. Opportunities include student worker jobs on campus, part-time jobs, internships and fellowships, and full-time jobs post-graduation and for career advancement.
- Cal State LA Handshake Career Community (presentation)
- Find Jobs from Employers Seeking Cal State LA students: Handshake (webpage)
- From Campus to Career on Handshake (introductory Handshake video by Handshake)
- How to Search for Jobs Using Handshake (video by Handshake)
LinkedIn is an online social networking site for working professionals and college students. You can view the profiles of working professionals and message them to connect. Use the resources below to get started.
- LinkedIn Profile Checklist of College Students (handout)
- Career Center Photo Booth - The Career Center provides free professional photos; no appointment is needed.
- Networking on LinkedIn (presentation)
- LinkedIn Job Search Checklist (handout by LinkedIn)
- Cal State LA Career Center LinkedIn Group — Our group on LinkedIn helps students meet peers, alumni and employers who are eager to give back.
Employers Recruiting at Cal State LA
We work to make connecting with employers easy and impactful. Here are some of the ways that employers recruit college students.
Employers set up outreach tables in front of the Career Center to provide part-time and internship openings.
Employer present about the organization's mission, values and work culture, which career pathways are available and how to successfully apply. Students can sign up for employer events using Cal State LA Handshake; Get Started: Handshake
On-Campus Interview Program
Employers conduct interviews on campus. Students can apply to positions and be invited to interview for the opportunity. Students can apply for on-campus interviews using Cal State LA Handshake; Get Started: Handshake
Employers attend our campus-wide career fairs offered twice a year, typically in September and March. Students sign up for the career fair using Cal State LA Handshake; Get Started: Handshake
An internship is an off-campus activity that provides real-world exposure to professional development in a business, non-profit or government setting. This opportunity allows students to use and refine the skillsets developed in the classroom. Students also engage firsthand with employers eager to contribute to their career development. For more support regarding these documents, please visit our student resources under Internship.
- How Internships Can Launch Your Future Career (presentation)
- Assessing Internships and Fellowships (presentation)
How to Find Internships
The campus provides a number of services to support your work to enhance student career success in partnership with our office. We invite you to use the resources below.
Free professional headshots with our self-service photo booth.
We accept donations of gently used and in-style professional clothing for students experiencing financial hardship.
We provide a range of presentations and can customize a workshop to fit your goals.
The Center for Effective Teaching and Learning (CETL) provides programs to certify a course as “career engaged."
Partner with Us
We welcome opportunities to collaborate and share our best practices. Email [email protected] to set up an exploratory meeting.