Are you the first in your family to attend college?
While no two students will face the exact same obstacles, this page lists some common challenges that you may experience as you navigate your career development. Whether you encounter these, or have other career-related concerns, remember that Career and Employment Services (CES) is here for you.
Peruse the page below, check out the Thrival Guide, and if you’d like to chat about career topics, we invite you to schedule an appointment! We can also help you connect to alumni who share the same identity.
Common Career Development Challenges:
Have a career-related concern?
There are likely resources to help you address it. And CES career advisors are more than happy to guide you! Don’t worry about not knowing the answers or asking “dumb” questions – there aren’t any dumb questions when pondering your future.
Our career advisors take a personalized approach with each student. They can help you discover resources and develop a search strategy that meets your particular needs.
And they can relate. CES career advisor Sara Winland was a first-generation college student! Sara is happy to share personal experience and to offer insight as you begin your career development journey. Use Handshake to schedule an appointment..
Here are a few resources to get you started:
- Puget Sound’s office of Intercultural Engagement
- Center for First-Generation Student Success
- America Needs You
- US News article: A Career Road Map for First-Generation Professionals
- First-Gen Fellows
- Building a Personal Board of Directors
Considering Graduate School?
Graduate school can be a gateway for academic and professional opportunities.
If you’re considering graduate school options, keep in mind that applying will be a detail-oriented process. And know that Puget Sound is here to support you!
- Academic Advising and the Registrar’s Office have created a guide to take you from researching programs to accepting an offer.
- The Center for Writing, Learning, and Teaching can review your personal statements.
- CES can provide feedback on your resume or curriculum vitae for your applications.
CES provides resources and career advising for students at every point in their journey. It’s never too early or too late, although the earlier you contact us, the better! Even if you’re not looking for a job or internship right now, our advisors can help you identify your strengths, grow your network, or connect with a mentor. The best part? You can continue to access our career services after you’ve graduated!
There’s truth to the saying “you don’t know what you don’t know.” Many students aren’t aware of the career opportunities beyond traditional fields (law, medicine, etc.). You may not know about professions that fit your interests, or you may find a calling in a job that didn’t exist when you entered college! It’s important to remain open-minded.
Gather a support network to help you explore your ideas. Consider including faculty advisors, professors, supervisors, staff, and alumni in your personal board of directors.
Logger alumni are a good choice as you begin to expand your network. You have a Puget Sound experience in common, which smooths the way for connection. Here are ways to find and meet alumni:
- Join Logger Link, Puget Sound’s networking and mentorship platform. This community is filled with alumni who’ve chosen to participate because they are eager to support students who are exploring options and seeking advice about career paths, postgraduate studies, and transitioning to life after Puget Sound. Take advantage of this Loggers-helping-Loggers community! P.S. A new group has been formed specifically for First-Gen Loggers!
- Search LinkedIn for Logger alumni. While alums that you find here may not be expecting contact in the same way that Logger Link alums are, this can still be a very useful tool.
- Attend campus events that feature alumni, like CES’ Click to Connect, and Dinner with Strangers.
- Consider meeting with a CES advisor to brainstorm about potential networking contacts and to get tips for your outreach.
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