Develop Your Job Search Skills
The University Career Center is dedicated to supporting your career development by providing you with resources you can access online at any time. Our staff has researched, collected, and developed resources to support you as you navigate the job search process and graduate school application process.
Professional Document Writing| LinkedIn | Using AI | Interviewing & Salary Negotiation | Professional Dress & Etiquette | Internship Search Process | Graduate & Professional School Application Process | Faculty Job Search Process | Veteran Students | Additional Resources
- Our Resume Guide for Students can help you get in-depth information on creating a resume.
Candid Career Professional Document Videos
Watch these videos from Candid Career to gain insights from career experts and industry professionals as they give their best resume and cover letter tips!
Because your resume is perhaps the most important document in your job search efforts,
there are some points to be considered in making this tool as effective as possible.
Be prepared to invest the time required to polish and update your resume.
All information on your resume must be accurate and up to date. By sending or posting your resume, you are agreeing that all information disclosed is accurate and true.
THE FOLLOWING SUGGESTIONS WILL HOPEFULLY ASSIST YOU IN PREPARING YOUR RESUME:
Why have a resume?: Your resume is your greatest tool in acquiring an interview. Everyone needs a powerful resume to serve 2 main purposes:
- To present a snapshot of your skills, abilities, experience, and knowledge.
- To help you get an interview.
The three styles of resumes are chronological, functional and a combination of the two. The chronological resume lists jobs and duties sequentially beginning with the current or most recent position. This style focuses on your growth in a specific profession. The functional resume emphasizes professional skills. The combination of the two styles incorporates the strengths of both the chronological and the functional. Your resume should be short, easy to read, and use words that are familiar to the reader. The goal is to show off your achievements and minimize any weaknesses.
You are encouraged to limit your resume to one page. While you can have a primary copy of your resume that's longer, limiting your content to one page help you highlight the most relevant information. Certainly, there are exceptions. A Career Center staff member will be happy to review your resume and help you in this process.
There is no need to put the word "resume" or words "resume of" at the top of the page. This document has become recognizable and will speak for itself. Your name, phone number and e-mail address should be placed at the top of the page. If you choose to list your address and have a school address in addition to another address (family home, etc.), it is advisable to list those addresses where you might be reached. in most cases, listing only the city and state is all that's necessary; a street address is not recommended, especially for resumes that will be posted online. Be sure to update the address or phone number if changes occur.
Ideally, a resume will be specifically prepared for each employer. Because of this, use care in how you word your "career objective." If you are applying for positions in several different areas, the objective may be omitted from your resume. Education majors should replace "career objective" with "teaching field" because this is what they are certified for and it is not likely to change. To target a particular employer or career field, you may want to prepare individual resumes for the actual interview. Remember, cover letters can be used to serve the purpose of establishing why you are sending a resume and you will be the communicator of this information in the interview itself.
Included in this section are undergraduate and graduate degrees earned. Most recent degrees are listed first (reverse chronological order). Include your major and minor if applicable. You may promote your marketable skills by putting other areas of academic emphasis; "15 hours computer science," "8 hours technical writing," etc. If space allows, you might even list some course titles. Grade point averages may be given in this section. Some students give their cumulative GPA or choose major GPA or junior/senior GPA, depending on which represents them most favorably. If you are not using the cumulative GPA, then label the GPA to explain it.
This section may include part-time or full-time work. It may also include internships and volunteer experiences. Name, city and state location of the organization, your title or position, and dates worked should be included. Describe your experiences in active, marketable skill-related terms and emphasize accomplishments.
This section may be titled many different ways. What you want to emphasize is the name of the organization, leadership roles, accomplishments and dates. Involvement in activities can and should be presented in such a way to show that you can interact with others, motivate, problem-solve, and achieve goals.
State your foreign language skills and accurately indicate your fluency. Foreign studies and/or travel might be appropriately placed here.
Study abroad can be listed in its own section or in the Education section.
A skills summary can be a strong section to add at the beginning of your resume, particularly for a generalist or for someone with varied work experience. Focus on objective marketable skills for the field you are targeting.
State your language knowledge and level of ability. For example: basic knowledge, intermediate, or expert.
The addition of a section on personal hobbies can provide the interviewer with helpful information. However, you should rarely delete other, more useful information to allow space for this section.
Personal data such as age, sex, weight, place of birth, and pictures were, at one time, a standard listing on the resume. Since the passing of equal employment legislation, this material is usually omitted. Unless you believe this is truly beneficial to the job you are seeking, this information is now considered to have little impact on hiring decisions and is generally omitted. Because relocation and willingness to travel are often a requirement for some career opportunities, the University Career Center suggests that phrases such as "willing to travel," "willing to relocate" or "seek position in Southwest or Texas" be placed in the near the top of your resume, either in the job objective or profile section or in your cover letter.
At some point during the hiring procedure you will be asked to furnish references. With few exceptions, your references will be contacted regarding your employability.
Though you may have written references in your application, we encourage you to list your references on a separate document. Include each reference's name, title, address, phone number and e-mail address. Only list those persons who have given you permission to do so. For those students who will be certified to teach, student teaching evaluations will automatically be included in your credentialing file at University Career Center.
Curriculum Vitae (CV) Tips
Because your CV lists all of your educational and professional history, it is important that it is well organized and highlights your major academic and professional achievements.
All information on your CV must be accurate and up to date. By sending or posting your CV, you are agreeing that all information disclosed is accurate and true.
THE FOLLOWING SUGGESTIONS WILL HOPEFULLY ASSIST YOU IN PREPARING YOUR CV:
Unlike a resume, your CV should consist of as many pages as is necessary to include all of your educational and professional experiences. Your CV is your greatest tool to highlight your achievements and provide information about your research, presentations, teaching, service, and relevant work experience. Everyone needs a powerful CV to serve 2 main purposes:
- To present a snapshot of you when not present
- To help you get an interview.
Style. Each field has different styles of writing a CV. Because your field may have specific expectations of your CV, you should ask a professor in your field for more information about how CVs in your field are frequently presented. The goal is to show off your achievements and minimize any weaknesses.
Length. There are no limits to the length of your CV. A career center staff member will be happy to review your CV and help you in this process.
Identifying Information. Your name, address, phone number and e-mail address should be placed at the top of the page. If you have a school address and another address (parents, etc.), it is advisable to list those addresses where you might be reached. Be sure to update the address or phone number if changes occur.
Education + Dissertation or Thesis Topic. Included in this section are undergraduate and graduate degrees earned. Most recent degrees are listed first (reverse chronological order). Include your major and minor if applicable. Under your Dissertation or Thesis Topic, you should include your committee chair. You may promote your marketability by putting other areas of academic emphasis; i.e., "15 hours computer science," "8 hours technical writing," etc. If space allows, you might even list some course titles. Grade point averages may be given in this section. Some students give their cumulative GPA or choose major GPA or junior/senior GPA, depending on which represents them most favorably.
Research Interests/Research Profile. This section should include information about your current and prospective areas of research.
Research Experience. Within this section, describe any research positions or experience.
Experience. This section may include part-time or full-time work. It may also include internships as well as volunteer experiences. Name, city and state where the organization is located, your title or position, and dates worked should be included. Describe your experiences in active, skill-related terms and emphasize accomplishments.
Areas of Teaching Experience. Within this section, include a summary of your teaching experiences.
Teaching Experience. Include a more detailed list of the course and subjects you taught or co-taught.Your position title and institution in which you gained this experience should also be listed.
Honors and Awards. List awards in this section. You may include academic achievements as well as scholarships. Grants could be included here or highlighted in a separate Grants section.
Professional Memberships/Organizations. List any professional organizations for which you served on committees or held officer position.
Community/Administrative Service. List any community or administrative involvement in which you engaged.
Publications/Presentations This section may also be divided into two separate sections. It should include all professional publications and presentations written in the format required by your discipline (e.g., APA, MLA, Chicago).
References. Include each reference's name, title, address, phone number and e-mail address. Only list those persons who have given you permission to do so.
Cover Letter Tips
The letter of application, or cover letter, should accompany every resume you send to prospective employers. A good letter introduces you to the employer, briefly states the purpose of communication, highlights pertinent information from your resume, and suggests a meeting or interview. It should not reiterate everything in the resume, but should complement and expand upon the resume. A good cover letter will provide solid reasons as to why the applicant should be considered further. Remember that the main purpose of a cover letter is to get the reader interested enough in you to want to read your resume.
In the cover letter, remember to do the following
- Type it neatly on 8 1/2" x 11" bond paper to match your resume. It should be kept clean and free of errors.
- Keep it brief (no more than four paragraphs). Cut to the chase - don't ramble.
- Never send a form letter. Each letter should be individually composed. Send an original letter and not a carbon copy; however, once a good letter has been developed, it may be used as a model many times with slight revisions.
- When possible address your letter to a specific person, and with their appropriate title.
- Talk about what you can do for the organization, and then take the initiative when closing by asking for an interview.
- Use your own style of writing.
- Use correct sentence structure and grammar.
- Avoid excessive use of I, me, my by using introductory phrases so the personal pronoun is buried within the sentence. Example: "In addition to interning, I..."
- Keep a copy of all correspondence sent for your own records. You'll be amazed how helpful this can be when interviews and meetings arise.
- When you complete a rough draft of your letter, show it to a career counselor, professor, experienced professional, or a friend for some helpful feedback.
Thank You Note Tips
The thank you letter is a short note showing appreciation to the interviewers for their time and the opportunity to interview. In the letter, make a connection with the prospective employer by mentioning something specific or some topic of discussion during the interview.
Write separate notes to each interviewer with different content – they will compare notes!
Send a short email thank you the same day or no later than the next day to each interviewer. A more in-depth, handwritten or typed note should be mailed to arrive within 3 to 7 days of the interview.
In the longer thank you letter, expand on what you will contribute to the company. You may also revisit a question from the interview that you feel you did not answer well. Do NOT state that you answered the question incorrectly. Instead, write that you want to add information to your previous answer.
Ask permission to take notes during the interview – a couple of words only – to help you remember the interviewers and their interests to reference in the thank you letters.
Thank you letters can be sent after meeting with an employer at a job fair, a job interview, an informational interview, and a networking event. Everyone likes to be remembered and appreciated!
LinkedIn is an excellent way to enhance your career and expand your job search. This networking platform is designed for the professional and will not include the same type of information that social media accounts contain. LinkedIn can help you make contacts within companies that interest you for a more focused job search; it is not the only job search tool, so do not rely on it exclusively.
Your LinkedIn account should serve as an extension of your resume. Add more information that will present your skills and experience in a more detailed way. You may wish to add your LinkedIn URL to the header of your resume. The following are some suggestions that will help you get started in creating a LinkedIn account:
- Don't know where to begin in creating your LinkedIn account? View this LinkedIn Guide for how to's and best practices.
- Choose a clear, friendly, and professional picture to add to your profile. Utilize the University Career Center's headshot photo booth for a perfect LinkedIn profile picture.
- Grab your connections' attention by writing a great About section.
- The About section is your opportunity to expand on your experience, explain the career you have chosen, and clarify why you are a fit for these roles.
- Check out our Writing your LinkedIn About Section guide for more information on what to include.
- Add your experience and skills. Showcase your professional experience and utilize this space as an extension of your resume.
- Begin making those connections. Once your profile is ready, send connection invitations to people you know. A general recommendation is to have at least 50 connections.
For additional tips on utilizing LinkedIn, download our LinkedIn Professional Networking handout.
If you are in need of a professional headshot, visit the headshot photo booth at the University Career Center Monday through Friday, 8 am - 4:30 pm. While no appointment is needed, times can be reserved in Hire Red Raiders. If you have questions, call our front desk at (806) 742-2210.
Ethics and Responsibility
In today's digital age, the power of AI has revolutionized education and career preparation, bringing with it endless possibilities. ChatGPT, Google Bard, Microsoft Bing, and other AI platforms can be incredibly useful resources and tools if handled responsibly and appropriately.
In considering the potential use of ChatGPT and other generative AI tools to amplify your academic brilliance and career preparation, remember to use ethics and responsibility as your guiding stars. These virtues will steer you through your journey in higher education and launch you onto the path of career success with integrity and honor.
Pledge to use AI's assistance honorably. While these platforms have the intelligence to create documents such as your resume, cover letter, and personal statements from scratch, let your voice and personality show through with your personal vocabulary to showcase your unique perspective. Remember, employers want to get to know you, not AI. Check out these suggestions to use ChatGPT ethically in your job and internship search process.
It is important to be aware of your ABCs - accuracy, bias, and confidentiality, along with the limitations of generative AI. For instance, as of August 2023, ChatGPT only has access to information up to September 2021 which means it might occasionally generate outdated or misleading information. It may also generate incorrect, or irrelevant output and produce offensive or biased content. Lastly, refrain from sharing any sensitive or personally identifiable information as generative AI relies heavily on data input. It is essential to be cautious about sharing such data, as you cannot be too sure about how it might be stored or used.
These platforms can aid in your career preparation but remember that human insights are equally valuable. Engage with the University Career Center and other on-campus resources to use these tools ethically and responsibly.
This article was created with the assistance of AI.
Tailor Job Search Documents
AI has been used in the hiring process in various ways on the hiring side for over a decade. The use of generative AI to help individuals navigate the job search is a new opportunity. Appropriate caution and context should be used when using generative AI.
We have compiled some sample prompts to help you get started.
Resume & Cover Letter
- Review my resume content and provide recommendations on how to adjust my bullets to emphasize marketable skills.
- Analyze my resume content and provide recommendations on how to adjust my bullets to align with [INSERT INDUSTRY] internship/full-time position.
- Are there specific buzzwords I should include in my resume to enhance my resume for applicant tracking systems (ATS) for this job? [insert job description]
- Draft a three paragraph cover letter, emphasizing the key skills related to this job description. [insert job description]
Assist with Interviewing & Networking
- Generate 10 specific interview questions based on this job description. [insert job description]
- I am interested in a company that supports the professional development of its staff. What are three questions I could ask to help assess this quality in a potential employer? This prompt should be adjusted to align with your values and priorities in a potential employer.
- Write a LinkedIn Connection request for alumni from Texas Tech working at [insert company name].
Exploring Career Options
Generative AI such as ChatGPT, Bard, and Bing can be great tools for Career Exploration. There are many ways you can use it to help you get started on your journey to discover a suitable career path and help you make an informed decision. Consider trying some of these sample prompts as you start exploring career possibilities with AI:
1. Explore options for your academic major
- Provide a diverse list of 10 internship opportunities for a student specializing in Agricultural Communications.
2. Incorporate assessment results, interests, and/or personal values to identify opportunities.
- What career options would be well-suited for an Arts major student, who is realistic, enterprising, and social according to the Holland code?
- What Engineering career paths would be well-suited for an individual who identifies as an extrovert and empath, occasionally struggles with procrastination, and tends to be nervous about new experiences?
- Which Texas based companies have family-friendly policies, foster diversity, promote environmental consciousness, and inspire community engagement?
- I like to work in a company with a collaborative work-culture and flexible work schedule in the Oil, Gas, and Energy industry. What companies align with these preferences?
3. Incorporate assessment results, interests, and/or personal values to identify opportunities.
- Based on my educational background and work experience, what 5 career options match my background and skill level? [Insert resume details without name and contact information]
- Based on my resume, what skills can I develop to help open doors to more career opportunities in the Automotive Sales industry? [Insert resume details without name and contact information]
Remember, generative AI is a practical tool you can use, but all tools have their quirks.
At the end of the day, AI and human collaboration are key. It is essential to remember that while generative AI can be valuable in career exploration, it should be used with a healthy dose of caution and checked by human guidance. Meet with staff at the University Career Center who are always eager and ready to discuss your career options to help you make well-informed decisions!
If you have submitted an application online, you have encountered an applicant tracking system (ATS). While they are designed to make a hiring manager's job easier, they can filter out candidates who don't build their resume for the online application process.
Quinncia, an AI system, will scan your resume and give you feedback to help maximize the impact your resume makes through an ATS. This knowledge can help you strategically design and build your resume for future internship and job applications. Additionally, you can conduct a mock interview with Quinncia and receive highly individualized feedback. Current students can access this resource at quinncia.io.
Networking & Interviewing Guide | Virtual Job Fair Resource
Candid Career Interviewing & Salary Negotiation Videos
Watch these videos from Candid Career to gain insights from career experts and industry professionals as they give their best advice on interviewing and negotiating!
The interview is the single most important aspect in job hunting. Good grades, an excellent degree, lengthy experience, and a sharp-looking resume won't compensate for a poor impression made during an interview. You must be able to sell yourself effectively. More often than not, it is the small details such as appearance, handshake, etc., that spell the difference between being selected or rejected for a job. Be thorough in your preparation! Since each interview is unique, the more you interview the more confident and skillful you will become.
Conduct a Self-Assessment
(Take an honest look at yourself focusing on such factors as:)
- Personality - What kind of person are you? Strengths? Weaknesses?
- Interests - What do you enjoy doing?
- Abilities/Skills - What do you do well?
- Values - Why do you want to work?
- Goals - Where would you like to be in five years?
- Experience - What have you accomplished?
Study the Organization
- Review company literature.
- Prepare important and relevant questions for the interview sessions.
- Ask others about the organization.
- Develop a clear understanding as to why you have selected them.
- Try and discover problems the organization may have and reflect on how you might be able to help them.
- If possible visit the organization. If not, review the staff bio page.
- Notice how employees are dressed.
- Pay attention to grooming, styles, etc.
THE INITIAL INTERVIEW
Your attitude is going to influence the interviewer's evaluation. Don't try to be someone you aren't. Emphasize your strong points and remember that the recruiter is looking for inherent personal energy and enthusiasm. The interview is your opportunity to sell a product and that product is you.
Dwell on the Positive. Try always to dwell on the positive. While past failures and shortcomings need not be volunteered, don't try to cover them up or sidestep them. Should the recruiter ask about them, try to explain the circumstances rather than give excuses or blame others. Remember, the recruiter is human and probably has made a few mistakes. You'll create a better impression by being honest and candid.
Ask Questions. When Indicated. If appropriate, ask meaningful questions at the end of the interview, particularly if you're not clear about the details of the job, the training program, or other job-related concerns. Don't ask questions just because you think that's what is expected, or to try to show off your intellect. Ask questions that will help you decide whether you want to work for this organization and/or to set yourself up for success in the role.
SOME DO'S AND DON'TS IN SUCCESSFUL INTERVIEWING
- Act natural
- Be prompt, neat, and courteous
- Bring copies of your resume
- Carry out promises
- Ask relevant questions
- Allow employer to express themselves
- Read company literature
- Examine company ratings
- Evaluate objectively
- Follow procedures
- Make yourself understood
- Listen to the other person
- Present informative credentials
- Keep an interview file with all the stuff you need in it. Take notes if you feel like you need to remember important info from the interview
- Follow up with personalized thank you letters
- Criticize yourself
- Be late for your interview
- Freeze or become tense
- Present an extremist appearance
- Become impatient
- Become emotional
- Talk too much or too little
- Oversell your case
- Draw out interview
- Make elaborate promises
- Come unprepared
- Try to be funny
- Unduly emphasize starting salary
- Linger over fringe benefits
Stages of an Interview
STAGE 1: FIRST IMPRESSIONS
- Introduction: light conversation about sports, weather, traffic, etc.
- Interviewer Expectations: Good, firm handshake; eye contact; proper interview attire/grooming.
STAGE 2: YOUR QUALIFICATIONS
- Education: grades, choice of school and major, special interests, and achievements.
- Work: Types of jobs held, level of responsibility experienced, tasks enjoyed most and least, what was gained.
- Which of your experiences has been most rewarding to you?
- What type of work environment appeals to you?
- What skills have you developed?
- Activities and Interests: Role in campus organizations, fraternities, sororities, extracurricular activities, hobbies, sports, cultural interests.
- Are you active in any organizations or clubs?
- What do you enjoy doing in your spare time?
- What led you to choose your field of study?
- What subjects did you like best? Why?
- Do your grades accurately reflect your capabilities?
- Willingness to work
- Ability to handle responsibility
STAGE 3: CAREER GOALS
- Immediate and long-term objectives, interest in the company, geographical preferences.
- Immediate and long-term objectives, interest in the company, geographical preferences.
- What are your long-range and short-range goals and objectives?
- When and why did you establish these goals?
- How are you preparing yourself to achieve them?
- What do you see yourself doing five years from now?
- How would you describe yourself?
- What motivates you to put forth your greatest effort
- What qualifications do you have that make you think that you will be successful?
- In what ways do you think you can make a contribution to our company?
- Realistic knowledge of strengths and weaknesses
- Knowledge of opportunities
- Interest in the company
- Serious interest in career
STAGE 4: THE COMPANY
- Company opportunities, training programs, corporate structure, benefits and educational opportunities, chances for promotion.
- Why did you decide to seek a position with this company?
- What do you know about our company?
- What are your geographical preferences?
- Will you relocate?
- Willing to travel?
- Informed and relevant questions
- Sincere interest in the company
- Appropriate but not undue interest in salary and benefits
STAGE 5: CONCLUSION
- What you should do next (fill out applications, send transcripts, forward references), further steps the company will take, when you will be notified of interview results, cordial farewell.
- Candidate's attention to information as a sign of continued interest.
Sample Interview Questions
Job Interview Questions is a free site used by more than a hundred universities and colleges across the country. Find interview questions specific to the position you are interviewing for based on the skills and qualities needed to do the job.
Questions to ask the INTERVIEWER
- What personality traits do you consider critical to success in this job?
- Describe typical first year assignments on the job?
- What is the best part about working for XYZ?
- What is the timetable for filling this position?
- What parts of your job are most challenging?
- What recent changes have forced your company to re-focus its efforts?
- What has the impact of these efforts been?
- What are the most important personal satisfactions connected with your job?
Example Graduate and Professional School Interview Questions:
Salary negotiation takes tact, skill, and research. Don't forget that salary isn't the only factor in taking an offer. Benefits, cost-of-living, geographic location, work environment, and corporate culture also need to be considered. Make sure you look at the whole picture. While doing your research, you need to also figure out what you're worth before you start to negotiate.In addition to negotiating the salary you want, there are many non-salary perks you can consider.
- Comp time (time off for overtime worked)
- Participation in the company's 401(k) plan
- Immediate vesting in the company's savings plan
- Stock or equity in the company
- Paid life insurance
- Continuing education or tuition reimbursement
- Flexible work schedule
- Child care benefits
- Elder care benefits
- An expense account
- Parking reimbursement
- Personal use of frequent flyer miles
- Subscriptions to professional publications
- Dues for professional organizations
- A better office
Virtual Interview Practice with Quinncia
In addition to mock interviews with career center staff, Quinncia's interviewing feature offers tailored mock interviews and individualized feedback using artificial intelligence that helps you practice telling your story based on experiences on your resume. Different from video interviewing, many employers are moving first-round interviews to AI-assisted interviews, where there isn't a human on the other end, and instead questions are presented on the screen or audio. Using this mock interview system can also help you prepare your interview presence for eventual video interviews as well.
To learn how to access Quinncia for mock interviews, call the University Career Center at (806) 742-2210 or by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org.
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Internship Search Toolkit
- Check out our Internship Search Toolkit for in-depth information on starting the internship search process.
Candid Career Internship Videos
Watch these videos from Candid Career to gain insights from career experts and industry professionals as they give their best advice on internships!
What is an Internship? An internship is an opportunity for students to work in an industry which matches their career interests to balance schoolwork with practical experience. An internship can be done during a summer, a semester or even a year to provide "real work" experience with a short term commitment. It may be a paid or volunteer position with part-time or full time hours. It can be done for course credit (depending on your college department's requirements) or simply for the experience.
Searching for an Internship
Brainstorm. What company would you like to work for someday? Begin with companies that you are interested in for future employment. Start researching companies early in your college career so you know which ones to target for your internship.
Remember to Use All Your Networks. What contacts do you already have through way of your family, friends, alumni, professors, previous teachers, coaches, etc.? Use these contacts to your advantage.
Use the Online Job Boards. You can research companies and discover if they have an internship program by checking out their website.
Think Outside the Box. Not all accountants work for a major firm. What other companies need accountants? Teaching also occurs outside the traditional classroom setting. Where could you use your teaching skills in a different environment? Nurses are found in more areas than just doctors' offices and hospitals. Explore all your options. You never know what will be the best fit for you until you think creatively about your skills and where they could best be used.
Consider an Informational Interview. Try conducting informational interviews. Set up a time to talk with several people who are working in your field of interest. This can be done either on the phone or in person.
Use the University Career Center. Texas Tech University Career Center is located at the southeast corner of the Wiggins Complex. Make an appointment by calling (806) 742-2210 to meet with a career counselor to discuss the internship search process. Through the University Career Center, you have access to Hire Red Raiders, an online listing of jobs and internships, over 150 company links, the capacity to preview companies which are coming to campus for job fairs and the ability to upload your resume for potential employers to review
Plan ahead. Internships are usually done after the sophomore or junior year. They can be done during the summer or during the school year. Plan ahead so you can incorporate an internship into your schedule at a time that is appropriate for you.
Wherever...Internships can be done in Lubbock, Dallas, New York, or Tokyo. You can choose the
location that is best for you. Investigate your possibilities in advance so if relocation
is an option, you will be prepared.
Again, remember to use your contacts. Do you have relatives in another city who are willing to house you for a summer or a semester? Do you have a friend you could live with while doing your internship in another city? Are there some options of living with a classmate who is also doing an internship in another city or even another country? Investigate your options. You never know where the best internship for you may be until you explore the possibilities.
Experience. An increasing number of students are doing internships to balance their classroom
learning with real life experience. An internship provides a springboard from college
life to career life, strengthens your background in your field of choice, creates
the potential for future work with the company, provides potential work-related references
and creates an opportunity for networking.
Why not? Experience is never a waste of time. You will either learn that you will enjoy the field that you have decided to explore through an internship or that this field is definitely not something you would like to pursue. Either way you have learned some valuable things about career-life and have defined or redefined which direction you would like to head.
You will need to check with your specific academic program to see what the requirements are to receive course credit for an internship. It is your responsibility to communicate the criteria and requirements set by your academic program to your intended employer. Some programs may not offer course credit for an internship, however the experience you gain will be worth your time even if you do not receive course credit.
International Student Interns
To learn more about the requirements for Curricular Practical Training (CPT), please consult with your International Student Counselor at the Office of International Affair. For additional information, please see the link below:
Preparing for the Interview
Before the Interview
- Select two or three sites you think would meet your needs for a successful internship experience.
- Research the companies in advance.
- Prepare your resume and cover letter by having them critiqued by a career counselor at the University Career Center.
- Consider setting up a LinkedIn profile to highlight your skills and experiences.
- Practice your interviewing skills with a career counselor at the University Career Center.
- If the internship will be for course credit, be prepared to provide the employer information about the requirements set by your academic program.
- Drive by the location of the interview. Even if you know the company's location, it still would be wise to drive to the site in advance. You never know if there will be road construction, detours, or what the parking situation may be like.
Day of the Interview
- Arrive early. In the rare event that you may run into a delay, be sure to have the phone number of the person who will be conducting the interview. It is better to contact the person early to inform him/her of the delay instead of explaining your tardiness when you arrive.
- Take a copy of your resume, cover letter and list of professional references for quick access if these items are requested by the interviewer or in case your materials were not received in advance.
- Ask when you may expect to know a definitive answer about the internship.
After the Interview
- Remember to send a thank you letter. This is an important part of the process that many people do not take the time to do. A thank you letter shows you are courteous, that you are appreciative of the interviewer's time and that you take care of details.
- If you have not heard from the company in the agreed upon time, call to check on your status.
- Select the internship that will best serve your needs.
- Contact the sites you did not select to decline their offers. Speak to the specific person who interviewed you. Do not just leave a message. You never know when you are dealing with a future employer.
- Make a list of priorities for your graduate program. Rankings and program accreditation are common factors. Additional factors might be faculty advisors, program modality, and available assistantships and funding.
- Research which schools offer the program that interests you. One popular resource to find a comprehensive list of available programs is Peterson's Graduate & Professional Programs.
- Learn which exam is required for admissions.
- Take the exam early in case you would like to retest.
- Visit TTU Academic Testing Services website for the examination dates and locations.
- Articles Related to Entrance Exams
- Be aware of each school's requirements and application deadlines (some schools will require you to apply with their university in general as well as with the specific college department).
- Use your resources and get multiple perspectives on your admission documents. The University Career Center and University Writing Centers provide reviews on essays and personal statements.
- If an interview is required, do a mock interview with a career counselor at University Career Center. Call (806) 742-2210 or log in to Hire Red Raiders to set up an appointment.
- If you have any questions about the university, the individual program and/or application process, call the specific university department for the program of your choice.
- If possible, visit the school and talk to faculty and current students in the program.
The personal statement distinguishes you from other candidates and gives the panel information on "who you are." This is your opportunity to “sell yourself” to the school. It is all about you, them, and where you both can go.
- Formal writing is expected. Be sure to always use proper grammar.
- Be creative and grab attention with your opening paragraph.
- Narrow the focus – not too many ideas.
- Make yourself stand out by being honest and stating your truth.
- Answer the questions exactly and carefully. Take some time for serious reflection.
- Be sure to include personality factors, history, successes, failure, and academics.
- Simple is sometimes best.
- Provide passion, but more importantly, provide persuasiveness.
- Proofread, proofread, proofread!
- Meet with someone from the UCC to have your statement reviewed.
Personal Statement Guides
Faculty Job Search Guide
- Check out our Faculty Job Search Packet to get in-depth information on creating a resume.
Job Search Process in Academia
The process of completing a dissertation and simultaneously applying for faculty positions
can feel overwhelming due to the extensive amount of information required for faculty
position applications. The following information as well as Career Center staff are
available to assist you with this difficult job search process in academia!
Applications for faculty positions often include the following:
- Cover Letter
- Research Statement
- Teaching Philosophy Statement
- Letters of Recommendation
Your research statement should not only provide information about your previous research, current research and future research ideas, but also it should demonstrate the significance of your research and how this research will benefit each specific institution for which you are applying. Some of the potential areas that might demonstrate your ability to contribute could include things like obtaining outside funding for research (through grant writing), collaborating with other faculty, enhancing student involvement in research, or developing new courses or programs. While your CV may provide detailed information about your research history, a research statement should address the following:
- Your motivation or passion to conduct your research.
- Reasons that others are interested in your research.
- An emphasis on the significance of your research.
- Challenges concerning your research and how you overcame them.
- Information about the contribution of your research to the problem you identified.
- The potential application of your research to your field.
- Significance of areas that your future research will address. Include both short-term research projects and long-term research goals.
Your research statement should specifically identify the publications (or manuscripts
in progress) in which you depicted your findings. It is important to keep your research
statement descriptive and detailed and yet remain concise. Pay careful attention to
the terminology used in your research and make sure that it will be easily understandable
by academic professionals in your field. Because this is your research statement,
it is essential that it illustrates your future research goals rather than those of
your dissertation committee members or advisors. Remember that your goal of this research
statement is to highlight the significance of your research and demonstrate the positive
impact that your research and future research will have on the institution to which
you are applying.
In addition to receiving feedback from a faculty member in your field, please schedule an appointment with a career advisor to obtain feedback on your research statement. Call 806-742-2210 to schedule an appointment.
Teaching Philosophy Statement
Teaching philosophy statements are generally 1-2 pages in length and utilize first person present tense. In addition to communicating your teaching beliefs, values, and goals, your teaching philosophy statement should present evidence of your effective teaching style. Your teaching philosophy statement should address the following concerns:
- Your teaching objectives
- Information about your teaching practices--how do you teach?
- Evaluation of your teaching methods that justifies the way you teach
Teaching Objectives. Your teaching objectives should not only demonstrate that you are teaching content areas of your courses, but also it should illustrate that you contribute to students professional and potentially even personal growth. It should depict your ability to assist students with necessary skills to establish successful careers such as critical thinking, reinforce their desire to develop habits of life-long learning, foster independence as well as teamwork, experiential learning, self-evaluation, and more!
Your Teaching Practices. Include specifics (assignments, class discussions, teaching strategies, etc.) about your teaching practices to help the reader visualize your teaching methods/style. In order to capture the reader's attention, make sure that you describe unique, memorable teaching techniques.
Evaluate Your Teaching. Through describing your evaluation process of your teaching methods you will convey your ability to engage in self-reflection and adapt to changes.
Marketable Skills Campaign
Military & Veteran Student Resources
The University Career Center provides individualized support to our student veterans. More information can be found here.
International Student Resources
Student Credential Files
Texas Career Development Association Resources
The Texas Career Development Association in coordination with the Texas Tech University Career Center has created a list of resources for those seeking employment during and post COVID-19. View the list!
Current students, log in to Raider Success Hub to schedule an appointment online.
Alumni, call our front desk (806-742-2210) to schedule your appointment.
The University Career Center encourages persons with disabilities to participate in our programs and activities. If you anticipate needing any type of accommodation or have questions about accessibility, please call 806-742-2210 in advance of your participation or visit.
Are you starting a full-time job? Have you been accepted into graduate school? Are you still deciding? The University Career Center (UCC) wants to know your post-grad plans! Report your Outcome!
Raider Success Hub
Hire Red Raiders
Get connected on Hire Red Raiders!
- Register for events and career fairs
- Search for jobs and internships
- View our resource library
- Find on-campus employment opportunities
UCC Contact Info
Phone: (806) 742-2210