Career Development: Myths vs Facts
MYTH: The Career Development Office can give me a hidden list of jobs that would be perfect for me.
FACT: While we have online job board and work to uncover hidden opportunities for students (which we make public for all STU students), our expertise is working with you to discover, clarify, and prioritize your own values, priorities, interests and skills so that you can develop your own unique vision of what you want for your future. We can then teach you how to identify hidden opportunities that are consistent with that vision.
MYTH: Everyone else knows what they want to do with their lives, and I should too.
FACT: Every person’s career journey is different. Because career development is a lifelong process, it is normal to feel uncertainty and anxiety about career decisions at various points in your life. While uncertainty can be scary and overwhelming for some folks, we’re here to help you work through the ambiguity. We encourage you to be kind to yourself and remember that you’ve already made career decisions successfully in the past (finishing high school, choosing STU) and you will make many more career decisions in the future.
MYTH: The Career Development Office can give me a bunch of tests and then tell me what I’m meant to do.
FACT: While career assessments can help quickly identify traits about yourself, we find that students rarely base career decisions solely from assessment results. Additionally, career development is complex because people are complex. There is no one occupation that each person is destined to fulfill, which we know can be both a disappointment and relief. Humans are much more flexible and adaptable than that, and multiple occupations could make you happy. Lastly, we also don’t “tell” you what you “should” do (as you are the only person qualified to make career decisions for yourself) but we help you explore yourself and your options with the goal of co-creating a plan for your future.
MYTH: I must go to graduate school: you can’t do anything with just a bachelor’s degree.
FACT: While for some occupations graduate school is required, many of our graduates have entered the workforce in the private, public and non-profit sectors right after graduation and have had rewarding careers.
MYTH: I’m a _________ major, so I need to do that exact thing.
FACT: Your major is just one of the many things that shapes the person that you are. Equally important are your values, interests, previous experiences, skills, what you do in your free time, the local labour market and a multitude of other factors. Because you are more than your major, we encourage you to think about yourself as a whole person when facing career decisions and understand how your degree can help open doors that were previously closed to you.
MYTH: I’m going to choose one job and do that for the rest of my life.
FACT: Because career development is a lifelong process, people don’t normally choose one occupation for the rest of their lives. People change occupations, develop new skills, gain additional education, move locations, change or acquire new values, have families, and a variety of other complexities that impact career satisfaction.