Making a Career Decision

Now that you have reflected on your interests and skills, given thought to what you want from a career, gathered information about career paths and industries through research online and talking with professionals in the field, and perhaps even tested some hypotheses, what's next? Deciding is not an exact science and can be challenging and stressful. If no one career path seems obvious for you, this likely means you might find satisfaction in several areas, and that any decision you make—particularly after having given it so much thought and research—is likely to be a good and reasonable one. If having done your thorough research and thoughtful analysis, you still aren't sure what paths are right for you, or your priorities among different goals, plan to meet with a Career Services advisor.

You may discover the career decision you've made is the right one for now and decide to pursue a job in one of the fields you've researched. You may decide to take time to do something you've always wanted to do short-term and can't imagine doing long-term. You may decide to attend a graduate program to prepare to enter the field you've chosen. Before you make this investment, however, do your best to be fairly certain of your goals. If you are not yet sure, the best move is often to work now and apply in the future once your goals are clearer.

Whatever you do, there is never a clear "right" or "wrong," and, most importantly, your decision won't be irrevocable. It is possible to change directions at any time in your career. If you continue to be aware of your goals and priorities and how they fit into the world of work, you won't have to worry about what you'll be doing 5 or 25 years from now. You'll have many options and will know how to pursue them.

Next Steps

After reading about various jobs and industries and talking with people who have already pursued those paths, it's time to gain experience doing the work to help you clarify your career goals and a plan to achieve them. Visit our Jobs and Internship page for more information about finding opportunities. 

Other Options

Another available path that students often take is to pursue additional education.  If considering graduate school, click here to get started.