Are you looking to fast-track your career, but feel like first you need a degree? Or are you worried about the seemingly endless cycle of needing experience to get a job but needing a job to get experience? Are you looking to gain the skills and academic requirements needed to land an entry-level position or graduate scheme?
Why not consider a university with an integrated professional development process? The College of Science at Oregon State University (OSU) does just that, instilling science students with excellent critical thinking and problem-solving skills that allow them to be ‘job ready’.
The College’s Integrated Professional Development (IPD) and Industry Programs are innovative and effective for career preparation, based on a one-of-a-kind platform that helps students develop professional development skills with content embedded in first-year science courses.
This program is paramount to success beyond the classroom, providing the experiential learning that helps graduates stand out as they enter the employment market. The program builds bridges between students and working professionals, meeting market demand for employees with the requisite skillset needed for career and life success in the 21st century.
The integration of professional development skills into the curriculum starts with freshman first-year experience courses. Students are invited to special networking events with industry and coached on how to secure internships that transform their classroom learning.
Adopting a holistic approach ensures that students explore different career options and life goals early in their studies, honing job-seeking skills such as résumé writing and interviewing, all while building highly valuable interpersonal ‘soft’ skills. The college has integrated IPD into Biology and Zoology classes, with plans to expand across all science majors.
On top of the IPD in first year, career development programs span all four years, helping students every step of the way.
The Career Development Center is always available to provide resources, guidance and professional training that will compliment your academic life while you explore internships in your field of interest and pave the way to a fulfilling career upon graduation.
From freshman to senior year, Oregon State is well prepared to provide you with the resources to develop professional skills to ease your transition from college to the workplace or to postgraduate and professional degree programs.
The center actively assists students with career planning and preparation, giving them competence in networking, professionalism and leadership – essential skills for success in a competitive, global workforce.
The center often holds networking events, career workshops and professional training bootcamps to prepare you to write effective résumés and polish your interview skills, also connecting you with employers in premier modern industries.
You can even make a one-on-one appointment with the Assistant Director of Career Education, Claire Wu, who coaches and guides College of Science majors on their journey to launch a successful career.
The College of Science also offers a specific program to help you get the skills you need to land an internship or research experience. The Science Professional Pursuits Program (SP3) is a three-term, three-credit program to help you identify, assess and compete for an internship or lab research position that can accelerate your academic and professional goals.
“SP3 is a goldmine of knowledge. We are a step above everyone else our age at this campus, because we know how to effectively employ our skills.”
Such an integrated approach to career planning and skills development has proven to be highly successful for OSU science graduates. The expansive OSU Alumni Network provides another excellent resource for networking and skills development.
Graduates from OSU College of Science have gone on to distinguished, sometimes even surprising careers. For example, Suzanne McGrath, after graduating with a degree in mathematics, charted an ambitious career path that led to her becoming President of Vision Capital Management, Inc., an investment advisory firm she founded 18 years ago with her daughter.
At the start of this month the College of Science announced its 2018 Alumni Award recipients. This year the recipient of the Young Alumni Award was Justin Hall, who jump started his career with Oregon State’s Ph.D. program in biochemistry and biophysics.
This choice was crucial in Hall landing a role at Pfizer Pharmaceuticals, one of the world’s most prominent biopharmaceutical companies. Since then he has gone on to become a Principal Scientist at Pfizer and is currently the biophysics lead for multiple drug development projects.
Both Justin and his wife, Andrea (a biochemistry Ph.D. alumna), distinguished themselves as exceptional students in the biochemistry graduate program and won awards for academic achievement. His advice for current students would be:
“To be able to not just do your science, but to be able to communicate your science. Find ways that you can cultivate your ability to talk or write about what you do, so the rest of the world can understand it.”
You, like Justin, can learn to communicate your science, develop crucial interpersonal skills and reach a vast network of esteemed alumni through the Careers Development and Integrated Professional Development programs at OSU College of Science.