We hear from many alumni when they are contemplating a career change.  A few things often precipitate career change: you weren’t sure what you wanted to do in the first place when you were choosing a college major, the field you chose is not what you expected or your career interests have changed, to name a few. With so many individuals having been laid off from their jobs recently, many are using this time as an opportunity to look in another direction with the hopes of greater career satisfaction.  We also hear from those who think they want to change but upon further discussion, it is the work environment or supervisor and a job change in the same field is actually what is needed.  If changing careers is something you decide to do, here are some tips to help you make the change:

  • Reach out to someone in the field you are considering to learn more about it- known as an informational interview.  Prepare some questions such as what skills are needed, what a typical day is like and  recommendations for making the change. Don’t know anyone yourself? The Office of Alumni Affairs or the Career Center may be able to help.
  • Once you have this information, develop an action plan.  If you need to develop additional skills, look into training.  So much is on-line today, and is short term, so it may be easier than you think. A word of caution: don’t go back to school to get a whole new degree unless absolutely necessary.  Often a bachelor’s degree you already have and some additional training is all that is needed.  You may also have more skills for the new field then you realize!  An informational interview will help to learn this, and once you know, you will want to talk up these skills in an interview. 
  • Your resume will need to reflect this new direction.  It will need to be restructured to demonstrate skills relevant to the new career so as to get past computer screening software and then entice a recruiter to look past the previous, unrelated jobs. A resume writer is highly suggested as formatting is just as important as content.  Good news- the Career Center at the Mount is free to alumni and can offer you resume assistance as good as you would pay for, upwards of $500 just for a resume.  We can also help with all the aforementioned suggestions.  Contact us at and we’d be happy to help.