Career Development Center




Your Career Action Plan is a roadmap that will offer you guidance starting in your Freshman year and taking you on a journey to your Senior year and beyond. The Career Action Plan is a checklist of activities and strategies that will empower you to achieve your career goals. You can use this three-part outline as a guide for managing your own personal life plan. And feel free to adapt it to your unique situation.


1 EXPLORE | Freshman & Sophomore

Discovering your interests, skills and values. Exploring your options. Choosing a career path.


2 ENGAGE | Sophomore & Junior

Getting involved on campus and in the community. Gaining experience in your chosen career.


3 EXECUTE | Junior & Senior

Organizing your tools.  Managing your campaign. Pursuing and obtaining a meaningful career opportunity.



Millennials in the Workplace

Stop Wishing, Start Doing

How Successful People Think

What Should I Do With My Life?

Corporate Nightmare


"First, you have to have a goal. For, if you don't know where you are going, then any road will take you there -- and it won't really matter what you do with your life. In fact, if you don't clearly know where you are going in your life, you probably won't recognize it when you get there."


"Begin with the end in mind. Start with a clear understanding of your destination. Know where you are going so that you better understand where you are now, and so that the steps you take are always in the right direction."



Freshman & Sophomore

This is the exploration or discovery phase in which you assess your personality and explore your options. Your objective during this first stage is to expose yourself to new experiences and meet new people. Try something new. It is time to learn more about yourself and study the world around you. You should engage in tasks that help you identify your talents, passions, and values and begin the process of discovering your purpose in life. It is time to learn more about potential paths. You should engage in tasks that help you gather information and investigate a variety of possible directions. Your goal at the end of this stage is to develop your sense of direction.

--Meet with your academic advisor to discuss your coursework
--Learn about campus services, resources, and activities
--Talk to upperclassmen and gain advice about campus activities
--Meet with your career counselor to discuss your career and life goals
--Take a career test to assess your personality traits
--Explore extracurricular activities that are of interest to you
--Attend various social, cultural, and recreational events
--Participate in a volunteer community service project
--Talk with your resident advisor about your college experience
--Consider taking a course in something new to enrich your academic experience
--Engage in activities that foster self-discovery and allow you to meet new people
--Investigate campus clubs or organizations that are of interest to you
--Engage in activities that expose you to new ideas and unfamiliar territories
--Engage in activities that allow you to explore a wide variety of career options
--Meet with your professors to solicit insight about your college experience


Career Planning Resources

Career Exploration Information

Extracurricular Activities

Your College Experience: Extracurricular Activities

How to Find Your Passion

Careers by Major

Purpose and Passion

What Can I do With This Major?
Career Ship: Mapping Your Future

Occupational Outlook Handbook

Academic Invest: Discover Careers

How to Know Your Life Purpose

Guide to Goal Setting



Sophomore & Junior


This is the engagement or experiential phase in which you begin researching your field of interest and gaining experience. This second stage should be devoted to professional development and career preparation. Your objective during this stage is to increase your sense of focus and solidify your career direction by getting more involved. It is time to expand your knowledge and improve your skills by applying yourself outside the classroom. You should participate in activities that validate and support your career goal and build your credibility. Your goal at the end of this stage is to be prepared.

--Meet with your academic advisor to discuss your major, minor and elective coursework
--Meet with your professors to discuss special projects and activities
--Meet with your career counselor to discuss your options and plans
--Attend career events, info sessions, fairs, and expos to gather information
--Learn about various occupations through publications and websites
--Talk to people who work in fields you are interested in and solicit their insight
--Engage in job shadowing of people and work settings you are interested in
--Learn how to write an effective resume and cover letter
--Learn how to prepare for a job interview


Job Market Tools

Resume Writing Resources

Skills Employers Value

Examples of Good Interview Answers
Job Interview as a Performance

Interview Questions: Tell Me About Yourself

Interview Tips: Tell Me About Yourself

Answering Interview Questions

Interview Preparation

Job Interview Questions and Answers
Tell Me About Yourself
Interview Do's and Don'ts

Interview Tips: How to Impress the Interviewer

Communicate Your Strengths
Special Issues

Graduate School Preparation



Junior & Senior
This is the execution phase in which you organize your resources, apply your strategy, and implement your plan. Your objective during this third stage is to finalize your plan, investigate opportunities, and launch your campaign. It is time to gather the necessary resources and equip yourself for entry into the job market. In this stage you are encouraged to take control and initiate action. You should utilize strategies, techniques, and tools that will allow you to effectively manage your campaign and excel in your career. Your goal at the end of this final stage is to be confident and empowered so that you can pursue and obtain your goal.

--Meet with your academic advisor to discuss how your major relates to your career path
--Meet with your professors to discuss field-specific issues and key contacts
--Meet with your career counselor to organize your plans, tools, and strategies
--Attend career events, workshops, info sessions, fairs and expos to pursue opportunities
--Join a professional organization or group related to your career path
--Attend professional meetings, conferences or conventions
--Attend panels and other events to hear guest speakers discuss critical issues
--Engage in a special research project or practicum/clinical experience
--Obtain an internship to gain experience directly relevant to your career path
--Begin the graduate and professional school application process
--Request referrals, recommendations, and references from your professors
--Conduct detailed job market research to learn about specific employers in your field
--Build a prospect list of the companies and organizations you’d like to work for
--Learn effective networking, prospecting and follow-up techniques
--Learn how to effectively manage a job search campaign
--Learn about professional behavior, professional attire, etiquette, protocol and workplace issues
--Engage in activities that empower you to have more control and choice in the job market
--Participate in a mock interview or interview practice session
--Attend career workshops and training sessions to enhance career preparation
--Get involved in extracurricular activities to build your experience and make contacts
--Join campus clubs or organizations that relate to your career path
--Participate in a volunteer community service project relevant to your interests or skills
--Engage in activities that test your skills and abilities
--Serve in a leadership role or in some capacity as an organizer, coordinator, or facilitator
--Establish mentor relationships with key people in your field of interest
--Obtain an internship to further explore and research your career options
--Conduct general job market research to learn more about your field of interest
--Research your graduate and professional school options
--Engage in activities that enhance your sense of focus and build your experience


Job Market Tools

Resume Writing Resources

Skills Employers Value

Make the Most of Your Career

Zip Recruiter: Job Market Trends

How to Master Your Job Search

Six Ways to Crack the Hidden Job Market

Ten Things Employers Want From a New Hire

Glassdoor: Job Market Trends

Tech Republic: Job Market Trends

Vault: Job Market Trends

US News: Tips for the Hidden Job Market

The Balance: Careers

Graduate School Preparation

The Real World



Career Development Center

University of Montevallo

Station 6262 | Montevallo, Alabama 35115

Farmer Hall, Second Floor

205-665-6262 |


UM Career Dev Center

Mission|Vision Statement

You Belong at Montevallo: Campus Tour

The Montevallo Experience

Career Action Plan: Managing Your Career

Univ of Montevallo: Campus Life

UM Flacon Athletics