Gain real-world experience with Career Coach

The Career Coach app has goals you can work on with activities that grow lifelong skills. This lesson organizes the activities from the app into a series you can follow step-by-step.

In this lesson, your goal is to discover how to gain real-world experience. Complete all the activity steps to grow real-world skills and reach your goal. To focus on a specific skill, you can work on one or more of the activities.

If you're new to Career Coach, visit the quick start guide.

Notes: For this lesson, you'll need:

  • A mobile device or computer

  • Microsoft Teams

  • Career Coach

  • LinkedIn

  • A journal you can customize to track what you discover and learn from the activities below (optional)

With the activities for this goal, you will: 

Learn skills to use in the workplace, Identify your skills. Identify alumni with career paths that interest you. Identify companies that interest you. Learn how to use LinkedIn to search for open opportunities. Update your LinkedIn profile. Identify real-world experiences that align with your skills and interests. Learn how to ask questions in an informational interview.

Get started gaining real-world experience

  1. Learn Watch the LinkedIn Learning courses on developing good workplace habits.

  2. Reflect Which habits from the course do you recognize most in yourself? What habits do you want to change or develop and how can you use what you learned from the course to get started?

    Tip: If you're using a journal, list the habits you want to change or develop. Use the journal to track other ideas for the steps that follow. 

  3. Open Career Coach. Select Profile. Select Skills Explorer. Upload your resume or transcript. Review your skills on the Profile page under My skills. Delete any you don’t want in your profile. 

  4. Go to LinkedIn. Update your skills and experiences. Follow the companies that interest you. Select Jobs. Search for real-world experiences by skills, company, and internship. Save the ones that interest you.

  5. Open Career Coach. Select Dashboard. Find opportunities on campus to gain real-world experience.

  6. Watch the LinkedIn Learning course on building strong workplace relationships.

  7. Reflect How can building strong workplace relationships help you in your career? Which of the skills from the course would benefit you the most and how can you start to build it?

  8. Open Career Coach. Select People. Use Filters to search alumni by company and industry. Send invites to connect on LinkedIn to three alumni who have real-world experience that align with your interests.

  9. Learn Watch the LinkedIn Learning course on using informational interviews to find real-world experiences.

    Note: This course has exercise files you can work on to grow your skills. 

  10. Reflect What questions can you ask about the real-world experiences of people in your network to identify the types of real-world experiences you’d like to have? Are there people in your network who work in industries or for companies that interest you? How can you use what you’ve learned in all the courses when you reach out to your network?

  11. Share Partner with a peer in person or on Teams. Exchange ideas for questions to ask in an informational interview to learn about the career paths of people in your network and find open opportunities. Write down the questions you formulate to use when you need them.

  12. Get advice Have career services or your faculty advisor review any real-world experiences you identified. Ask which ones would help you gain the experience you want  Ask if they know of other open opportunities that align with your interests. Track any applications you submit.

Well done! What's the next step in your career journey?

Goals and activities from Career Coach:

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