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Career Planning Tools and Tips

How do university students plan for careers today? The first step is recognizing that employment is no longer about graduates getting one job and staying there until retirement - there’s far more opportunity today.

Instead, graduates today can expect to take on multiple roles in diverse industries - on average 15 jobs across three sectors over the course of your career. Instead of a ‘job for life’, it’s about building your ‘career for life’.

With markets evolving at a faster speed and new sectors developing like never before (AirBnB, Uber anyone?), careers no longer evolve linearly. Throughout your career, you may choose to change jobs to develop new skills, gain further training, receive mentorship, secure a higher salary, or simply to embark on new challenges.

As a student, you’ll be testing out your skillset and preferences through volunteering and work experience gained through part-time jobs, internships or co-op.

As a graduate and new professional, you will continue to grow your network and build what is now called your foundation career (years 10-15 after graduating).

Moving into mid-career, you will be defining your professional self and as you discover what drives you, possibly alter career paths or pursue continuing education to strengthen your skill set.

Rather than retirement, professionals today are building legacy careers and working into their 70s as they explore and adapt their career to suit their lifestyle.

As you embark on building your career for life, staying adaptable is essential. Identify and seize growth opportunities, and remember that your career for life is an exciting and continual learning process, encompassing educational, professional and personal growth.

If you are uncertain about your career direction, or who wish to explore viable options, and want to learn about resources available to help you make appropriate strategic decisions, career advising appointments are available with a Career Education Specialist at the Career & Co-op Centre.

Note: If you are considering switching programs or have other academic related concerns, please contact the Centre for Student Development & Counselling (undergraduate students only) at (416)979-5195.