Explore Career Paths

In your degree studies, you gain advanced skills that can be applied in a wide variety of careers. You gain skills related to your major and career readiness skills that employers value. The resources below can help you explore career pathways and majors.

If you are unsure about what jobs relate to your major, the resources below can help you obtain information about the career possibilities.

  • Search What Can I Do with My Major?
    This website is a great starting point for viewing related fields, job titles, work places and professional organizations related to an academic major.

  • Watch Career Interviews by Major and Industry
    Search by a major to view interviews from working professionals who majored in that discipline. You can also search by an industry that interests you. An industry describes the activity of the company and includes people with different occupations who work for the same type of business.

  • Search Open Jobs by Major: Cal State LA Handshake
    When you sign up for this free college student job site, you can search for current job openings by a major. You can also search job openings by industry, which is the type of business activity a company or organization performs.

You can also explore jobs by the type of work that interests you.

  • Search by Job Family
    A job family is a group of jobs based on work performed, skills, education, training and credentials. Select the type of work that interests you to find related job titles.

  • Search by Industry
    An industry is a broad group of businesses or organizations with similar activities, products or services. Select the type of activity, produce or service that interests you to find related job titles.

  • Explore Guides to Jobs
    These job guides include information about top ranking careers and industries.

You can explore employers and employment options by a wide variety of interests. Use these resources to help your research.

Companies

Government

Freelance or Independent Contract Work

Entrepreneurship

  • Entrepreneurship
    Read the above linked IRS website to learn the basics of setting up a business. Entrepreneurs are business owners rather than employees. Entrepreneurs can provide a product or service in practically any career field imaginable. Learn more with this introductory short course on entrepreneurship.

If you would like to know the starting salary for a job or major, use these resources.

  • CSU Explore Graduate Earnings Data
    The California State University system provides data on the salary earnings of students who graduated. Select Los Angeles to view the salary outcomes by major of graduates from Cal State LA.

  • Job Future Caster
    Choose an occupation category/job family that interests. Then, select a specific occupation/job title of interest. You can also look by state and regional metro area.

  • The College Payoff
    Explore lifetime earnings based on workers with varying degree levels (e.g., bachelors, masters). Filter the data by your area of interest including undergraduate major, occupational field, industry, state, etc.

If you are still unsure what major you should study after exploring career pathways by major, you can assess your work interests, values, skills and personality to identify job options and determine which majors lead to that job.

Focus2Career

(Use access Code: EAGLESLA)

Use this self-guided career assessment software to assess your work interests, values, skills, personality and leisure interests. Then, combine the results to find job options that match all or some of your qualities. Choose which job options interest you to see what majors lead to that job. You can also search job options by job family. A job family is a group of jobs based on the work performed, skills and education required.

These videos can help you interpret each section of Focus2Career.

Career Planning

Now that you have some ideas about your career goals, you are ready to develop an action plan to achieve them. Use these tips to get started.

To learn more about a job and major, it’s helpful to speak with someone who is working in the profession. Professionals are eager to give back and help students explore careers in a career conversation.

What is a career conversation?

It is a meeting between you and a professional where you ask questions to learn more about a job of interest. To better understand what a career conversation is, you can watch videos with professionals as they talk about how they got into their career and what they do in their job; Watch Career Conversation Videos by Major

What should I ask?

Review this handout to brainstorm questions to ask the professionals; Career Conversation Questions

Where can I find professionals in my field of interest?

  • Cal State LA Handshake
    When you sign up for this free college student job-seeking software, you can view employer profiles and message them to connect. You can also attend employer events to build relationships with working professionals in a job title or company of interest.

  • Cal State LA Alumni Mentoring Program
    The Alumni Association provides a career mentoring program where you can connect with alumni who would like to give back by helping you with career exploration, development and goal setting.

  • LinkedIn
    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.

Your professional identity is shaped by your lived experiences, community cultural wealth, world-of-work skills, and profession-specific/major-specific skills. Your experiences in college can give voice to your professional identity in your future career. 

A professional brand is how employers see you in your major and career. It reflects who you are as a professional. You demonstrate your professional identity in your classroom assignments and campus activities. These experiences are included in your college résumé, job applications and job interviews. Use these resources to start exploring your professional identity and building your professional brand.

Who am I as a professional?

Get started with our presentation to Cultivate Your Professional Identity in College to identify how your lived experiences and community cultural wealth align with your career readiness skills. 

What is my professional brand?

Use our Professional Brand Template (handout) to start creating your professional brand in your major. Then, use our Scoring Rubric (handout) to see how you can continue to advance your brand.

What is my plan to build my professional brand?

Review our Professional Development Plan Timelines (presentation) to learn what you can do each academic year to gain experience in your major and build a brand that will help you obtain a good job upon graduation.

Use our Exploring My Major at Cal State LA (worksheet) or our Choose Your Own Career Adventure in College (worksheet) to brainstorm how you can explore your career interests and network while in college.

Use our Professional Development Plan Template (worksheet) to schedule what you will do each semester to explore your major and career.

Once you have explored career pathways and the level of education needed to achieve your career goals, you are ready to make a decision to continue your education. Get started with the website link below to find resources and general guidance for Cal State LA students exploring graduate and professional school pathways.

Students should schedule appointments with faculty mentors or faculty advisors with any discipline-specific questions. Faculty advisors and mentors can help with revising statements for graduate school. Peer tutors in the Center for Academic Success are also available for academic and general writing assistance. You and your writing tutor can brainstorm, organize, and review a personal statement or statement of purpose. The Graduate Resource Center occasionally provides workshops such as choosing the right graduate program and writing a statement of purpose or personal statement. 

Resources for Applying to Graduate School

Additional Support

Career advisors, students and campus mascot Eddie smile while at a booth outside the Career Center

Career advisors are available by individual appointment. We can help you explore your career options and create action plans to help you gain experience.

Schedule an appointment with a career advisor

We offer workshops throughout the year to help you identify your professional brand, connect with professionals to explore career options and create action plan to help you gain experience.

Sign up for workshops on the Career Center calendar

Part of choosing a career path includes knowing about workplace culture and what opportunities are available with your degree. Employers host events where you can learn more about what's possible.

Sign up for employer events using Cal State LA Handshake