Career Preparation
(for CS Majors)

Preamble

Description

Career Preparation helps students explore the most common career and graduate school options for cs/cse/mwd majors. Job seekers learn how to locate the most appropriate entry-level jobs in the tech sector, while students wishing to pursue graduate studies understand how to find the best fit at the research, academics, faculty, and scholarship levels. Students also learn to prepare a polished résumé or cv, establish a professional online presence, and develop best interviewing practices — for the tech sector and academic institutions. Additionally, students learn — with the support of Career Services — how to use job-searching tools, such as LinkedIn, Glassdoor, and Indeed. We’ll also discuss how to network with others, how to obtain internships, and how to perform a personal “gap analysis.”

Learning Outcomes

Upon successful completion of this course, students will understand...

Schedule

Important Notes

The University treats absences related to covid-19 as excused absences. Consequently, you’ll need to get notes from someone in class, as mentioned in the section of this syllabus marked Advice on Succeeding in Class. There will not be a streaming video option for anyone missing class.

In addition to attending class, Career Studio publishes a list of events in their calendar that are crucial to your success in this class. These events are marked as ⎨career studio⎬ below. You can register by finding the events on their calendar and clicking the event’s title.

Important Dates

Résumé: Get started (Explore) ⎨career studio⎬: Friday, 21 January, 1:00 – 1:30 pm; held virtually.

Résumé: Refined (Prepare) ⎨career studio⎬: Wednesday, 2 February, 10:30 – 11:00 am; held virtually.

UHart Career Summit (Career Fair) ⎨career studio⎬: Thursday, 3 March, 9:00 am – 2:00 pm; held virtually.

No class (spring recess): Monday, 14 March, and Wednesday, 16 March.

Career Readiness Academy ⎨career studio⎬: Tuesday, 12 April, 5:30 – 6:45 pm; held virtually and required of all students enrolled in the various sections of Career Preparation.

Last class: Monday, 2 May 2022.

Week Topics Homework
One We do not meet this week, but you do have an assignment. Attend Résumé: Get started (Explore) ⎨career studio⎬.
Two
  • Course breakdown.
  • Individual introductions.
  • GitHub intro.
  • Open a GitHub account.
  • Reply to the Microsoft Group thread requesting your GitHub username.
  • Create a private GitHub repo called career-prep and add me (code-warrior) as a collaborator.
Three
  • Self-assessment (“Am I studying what I want to study, or what someone else wants? Shall I pivot towards a different career path than my major? What job will make me happy?”).
  • Skills assessment (“What amd I good at? Do my grades reflect this?”).
  • Past work experience (“Have my last jobs been simply rote-type jobs about which I don’t care? Is there anything about my past jobs that really excite me?”).
  • Attend Résumé: Refined (Prepare) ⎨career studio⎬
  • In a basic text file, compile all the items that will be required for your résumé/cv, such as name, contact info, your willingness to relocate, school info, GPA (if it’s above 3.0), etc.
  • Name the file resume-content if you’re a job seeker, cv-content if you’re looking to go to grad school.
  • Add the file to your career-prep GitHub repo.
Four
  • Getting organized
    • Have unofficial transcripts at the ready.
    • Have at least two official transcripts mailed to you, but don’t open them.
    • Create a digital calendar that syncs with your computer.
  • Take the 60-question interest profiler at O*Net (Occupational Information Network) Interest Profiler.
  • Visit O*Net and do an “Occupational Search” for the work you’d like to do.
  • Also visit The US Bureau of Labor Statistics’ Occupational Outlook Handbook and search for your occupation.
  • Create the first draft of your résumé/cv, formatted for 8 ½" × 11" paper, and upload it to your private repo. Prepare to share with us all during next week’s class.
Five
  • First round of résumé/cv critiques, or crits.
  • Letters of recommendation
    • Requesting letters of recommendation; ask for strong letters of recommendations; ensure you know your recommender(s) well.
    • Secure at least 2 recommenders for a job search, 3 for graduate school.
Six
  • Second round of résumé crits.
  • Put your résumé under Git control.
  • Using Microsoft Word, prepare a list of all past jobs.
  • Gauge the technical skills you’ve acquired at school or learned on your own, then, also using Microsoft Word, prepare a separate list of those skills.
Seven
  • Preparing cover letters as sections.
  • Preparing personal statements as sections.
  • Putting cover letters/personal statements under Git control.
  • UHart Career Summit (Career Fair) ⎨career studio⎬
  • Have second draft of résumé/cv ready to share for next week’s class.
  • Preparing content for job-related media profiles.
Eight
  • Preparing LinkedIn profiles and networking with classmates.
  • Using pictures that observe a high face-ism ratio.
  • Take a set of pictures for your LinkedIn/Glassdoor/Indeed/GitHub profiles. Consider having a friend take the pictures.
Polish up your GitHub profile and the code hosted there.
Nine
  • Spring recess.
Ten
  • Understanding salaries.
  • Mapping your salary to your gpa.
Have third draft of résumé/cv ready to share for next week’s class.
Eleven Calculating salaries for working in the private sector as a full-time employee or a contractor. Prepare deliverables for next week: Update résumé/cv, per feedback; create a cover letter/personal statement; and, finish LinkedIn profile, complete with a profile picture.
Twelve
  • Polish LinkedIn, Glassdoor, and Indeed accounts.
  • In-class mock interviews.
Research backup/redundancy options, like Time Machine, File History, and Backblaze, to ensure your data, including all the deliverables for this course, are never lost.
Thirteen The importance of backing up your work and keeping detailed notes about your job search. Attend Career Readiness Academy ⎨career studio⎬
Fourteen Job searching advice. Have last draft of résumé/cv ready to share for next week’s class.
Fifteen Final crit of deliverables; Q&A. Put finishing touches on all deliverables for our last class.
Sixteen Evaluations and closing notes. Submit deliverables: a final résumé/cv, cover letter/personal statement, LinkedIn profile, GitHub profile, and a post-graduation action plan.

Class Policies

Advice on Succeeding in Class

Read over the following to understand procedures for maximizing your chance of succeeding in class.

Grading

There is no grade for this course; it’s pass/fail. In order to pass, students must meet all three of the following criteria:

  1. Participate in the course. This means attending every lecture.
  2. Attend the virtual Career Readiness Academy event on 12 April.
  3. Complete a résumé (for employment) or cv (for graduate school); a cover letter (for employment) or personal statement (for graduate school); and, establish a post-graduation action plan.

Students with Disabilities

Read about how The University of Hartford supports students with disabilities: https://www.hartford.edu/academics/academic-support/accessibility-services/default.aspx

Contact

Nowadays, I only use email for emergency situations, such as a pet emergencies, personal tragedies, etc. For matters related to our course, you’re advised to see me before or after class, during my office hours, or by appointment. My contact info is listed in the Preamble.

Office Hours

If neither of the aforementioned times agrees with your schedule, we can make alternate arrangements to meet.