Find career news, views & opportunities at HireDePaul
Author: Hilarie Longnecker
As an assistant director at DePaul University's Career Center, I design and deliver one-on-one and group career development services through coaching, events, and resource development. I enjoy working with students to explore how their interests, skills, personality, and values intersect with the world of work. With over 12 years of experience in career services, I currently advise the students from the university's College of Science and Health, as well as manage the Career Center's Peer Career Advisor Program.
Welcome! Please press play for a message from Karyn McCoy, the university’s Assistant Vice President for the Career Center:
At DePaul, we are focused on empowering you to succeed. Our Career Center helps students like you identify interests, build skills and navigate all things career-related from your very first day as a DePaul student.
We are excited to help you set and reach your goals! As you weigh your options, we invite you to connect with us at the Career Center. We welcome the opportunity to answer your questions or sit down to talk with you.
Remember, your success is our mission. As a Blue Demon, you can count on us as a guide while you Explore, Connect, and Build Experience. Here are just a few of the many ways we do this:
Our Career Communities model is designed to help you explore, make connections and create your success story. By joining one or more of our communities as a DePaul student, you gain direct access to career advisors, industry experts, alumni, faculty and employers who will help you cultivate the skills and knowledge needed to succeed. Career Communities are also a great way to connect with fellow students who share your interests!
At DePaul, we recognize the value of connecting with experienced peers who have successfully navigated the decisions you are faced with now. Our Career Ambassadors are student leaders who are eager to share their insights and help you weigh your options.
Building your network beyond campus is also part of the DePaul experience. The DePaul Alumni Sharing Knowledge (ASK) Network includes over 1500 alumni mentors from all industries who are eager to help our current students. DePaul students can reach out to or meet with these alumni to chat about their work, conduct job shadows, receive insider guidance on landing a position and more.
With the city of Chicago at your fingertips, opportunities to apply what you learn in the classroom through internships are endless for those who choose DePaul.
Last year, DePaul students had access to over 15,000 internships that employers posted through our office. Employers recruit with us because they recognize the value of a DePaul education and the caliber of our students.
Our students are also able to build experience through our robust on-campus student employment program. These paid, student held positions can allow you to develop skills and a professional edge, putting you on the track to success while you study.
Are you planning to attend medical school? If so, it’s probably no surprise that a strong MCAT score—among other attributes and experiences—will be an important part of ensuring that you are a competitive applicant.
Studying for the MCAT though is no easy feat. Many students spend months preparing. Some will engage in self-study; utilizing books, class notes, and flash cards. While others opt for in-person or online courses through test preparation companies like Kaplan, Examkrackers, or Princeton Review. Additionally, Internet-based options range from free sites, such as Khan Academy, to fee-based resources like the official MCAT practice questions and tests.
With all of these options, deciding how to best prepare for such a high-stakes exam can be a difficult decision. Consider this:
The American Association of Medical Colleges (AAMC) reminds students that, “There’s no right or wrong way to prepare for the MCAT exam.”
“There’s no right or wrong way to prepare for the MCAT exam.”
It’s true. The first step in devising your plan should be to reflect on how you best learn and retain information. To read about how successful MCAT examinees prepared, check out the testimonials the AAMC hosts on its website. You might just find the inspiration you need.
And, if you haven’t already, be sure to meet with Lindsey Burdick, the university’s Pre-Health Advisor. Lindsey is an expert in all things medical school, and can help you to navigate the larger preparation and application processes. Remember, the MCAT is just one aspect of your application. From deciding when to take the exam, to thinking through co-curricular activities and course planning, Lindsey is well suited to guide you as you aim to strengthen your profile as an applicant.
To meet with Lindsey, contact the College of Science and Health’s Office of Advising and Student Services at (773) 325-8490.
At the end of almost any interview, you will be asked, “Do you have any questions for me?” How you respond to this can make or break the interviewer’s overall impression of you—so make a plan to respond to this prompt wisely.
Here are a few do’s and don’ts to help you develop a strategy for asking questions after the interview:
Do aim to elicit valuable and relevant information from your interviewer that would help you decide if the opportunity would be a good fit, should you be offered the position.
Don’t feel limited to asking only about the specific position you are interviewing for. Aim to learn about the organization’s culture so that you can assess whether you would both feel comfortable and flourish there.
Do ask questions that demonstrate your knowledge of the field, organization, and position.
Don’t ask questions that could be easily answered through research via the organization’s website or other resources. Instead, use the information that you glean from such pre-interview research to demonstrate your knowledge, as advised in the preceding tip.
Do explore how the position at hand might fit into your larger career path. With that said, however, be careful not to suggest that you see this position as a simple stepping-stone. Instead, you might ask about where the last person in the position has moved on to or what skills you can expect to hone in the role.
Don’t inquire about salary, benefits, or perks—you haven’t yet been offered the position, so now is not the time to request this information.
Do come prepared with multiple possible questions and don’t ask those that have already been addressed throughout the course of the interview!
Looking for more guidance on formulating smart questions to ask an interviewer? Check out this article from Business Insider for inspiration.
Have you ever noticed that Handshake suggests internship and job listings to you when you log into your account? These little boxes included on your home page’s center panel provide you with a few key details and offer you the option to either learn more (click “View Details”) or begin your application (click “Apply”).
Sounds great, right? But if you’re an education major and you’re seeing positions in logistics and supply chain management, it may not be as helpful as you would like. The fix is simple! Take a few moments to personalize your Handshake experience by completing the “Love what you do. Do what you love.” questionnaire.
Finding your perfect opportunity might be as simple as answering six key questions. The survey will walk you through identifying the following:
What you’d like Handshake to help you find such as job listings, information about career events, networking opportunities, etc.
The types of positions you are seeking such as full-time or part-time jobs, internships, volunteer opportunities, graduate programs, etc.
Where you’d like to live post-graduation
The industries that intrigue you
The types of job functions that interest you or what type of work you want to do
And when you expect to graduate
That’s it! Handshake will use that information to populate your home page with relevant opportunities, and the Career Center will use it to help inform you about events, and more.
Think your responses may change over time? No problem! Simply click on “Your Career Interests” on the left-hand navigation panel to edit your responses in the future.
If, on the other hand, you are struggling to select responses to the mostly multiple choice items on the survey, see your career advisor. We’re ready and waiting to help you explore and identify job functions, industries, and geographic markets that will best fit your career goals. Check out our website for more information on connecting with your advisor!
In addition to my role as career advisor to College of Science and Health students, I have the distinct honor of managing the Career Center’s Peer Career Advisor Program (PCAP). Peer career advisors are available on a walk-in basis to help students and recent alumni with basic career-related topics, including:
Resume development and critiques
Cover letter basics and feedback
They’re also experts on the many services the Career Center offers, so they’re well equipped to explain and connect you with advisors, workshops, events, and programs!
This year’s team is exceptional! Learn a little bit about our eight peer career advisors and consider some of their top career-related tips.
“Being a PCAP has taught me the importance of networking…” — Alysa
Hey! I’m Alysa, and this is my second year as a PCAP. I am currently a senior studying international studies and hoping to go into nonprofit management. Being a PCAP has taught me the importance of networking and showed me that being comfortable with myself and the atmosphere in the office contributes to success. The best piece of advice I can give to students is to be confident; be confident in yourself and your position, and during an interview or networking event. That confidence will show through your work, and will be seen by employers.
“My desired career path…is to become a staff writer for a TV show in Hollywood.” — Dontorrie
My name is Dontorrie. I’m a senior majoring in psychology with a concentration in human services, and a minor in screen writing. I became a peer career advisor because I wanted to use my previous experience as a mentor to continue to assist DePaul students on a higher level with their career development. Some of my favorite hobbies are playing video games and making pottery. My desired career path after graduation is to become a staff writer for a television show in Hollywood. The best advice I can give to students curious about Career Center services is to take advantage of any of the services available. Even if you don’t necessarily feel you need to use a specific service, try it out. In the end, you may just learn from the experience.
“…I especially enjoy working with first-year students.” — Heather
I’m a junior studying philosophy and Spanish. I’m also currently a resident advisor in Belden-Racine Hall at DePaul. My decision to become a peer career advisor was motivated by the love I have for working one-on-one with students; I especially enjoy working with first-year students. My one piece of advice for students using the Career Center is that if you’re unsure whom to go to for help, make an appointment with us! We can help direct you.
“…the advisors here helped me choose a major and find a career field…” — Jane
My name is Jane, and I’m a senior majoring in health sciences with a minor in Spanish. I first came into the Career Center during my freshman year, and the advisors here helped me choose a major and find a career field that excited me. I decided to apply for the Peer Career Advisor Program soon after. I would definitely recommend that all students—whether you know what you want to do in the future or not—come in to meet with their career advisor. Our career advisors know a lot and can really help you discover your path!
“…I always recommend making use of the resources DePaul offers so you can make the most of your time here.” — Leyla
I am a senior studying public policy and geography here at DePaul. I am originally from northern New Hampshire, but love the city as much as I love a little farm town. From my start at DePaul I have been deeply invested in student involvement and the student experience and have held positions with DePaul Activities Board, DePaul Housing Services, DePaul Greek life and more. As an old and wizened senior, I always recommend making use of the resources DePaul offers so you can make the most of your time here. Best of luck, Blue Demons!
“…I’m a junior majoring in psychology with a…concentration in law, crime, and criminology. — Maya
Hey all! My name is Maya, and I’m a junior majoring in psychology with a minor in sociology and concentration in law, crime, and criminology. I decided to become a peer career advisor after taking an awesome class with the University Internship Program; I learned a lot about the Career Center and its resources during the class and knew I had to get involved! When I’m not working in the Career Center, I’m teaching as a Chicago Quarter Mentor, acting as vice president of DePaul College Democrats, or exploring the city with my friends in search of pretty buildings and good food. As far as advice goes for using the Career Center—don’t wait until your senior year to visit! The Career Center offers so many valuable resources. The sooner you come in, the more you’ll get out of it.
“…I have decided to pursue a career in social work after I graduate.” — Mackenzie
Hi there! My name is Mackenzie, and I am a senior double majoring in sociology and English and minoring in professional writing. This is my third year acting as a peer career advisor, a position I decided to apply for my freshman year after a number of positive experiences with Career Center staff. Because of my experience working at the Career Center, as well as experiences volunteering at various nonprofits throughout the city, I have decided to pursue a career in social work after I graduate. In my free time I enjoy going to concerts and music festivals, writing, and traveling.
“…I hope that my career path will allow me to explore art and culture through a social science lens.” — Nellie
My name is Nellie and I am a senior studying women and gender studies with a minor in English literature. I am interested in many interdisciplinary issues related to humanities, and I hope that my career path will allow me to explore art and culture through a social science lens. I wanted to become a peer career advisor because I love writing, editing, and working one-on-one with others in order to create successful pieces of work! My advice to students is to not be afraid to reach out to any advisor at the Career Center because they will go above and beyond to help and would love to meet you.
Connect with a peer career advisor today! Peers are available on a walk-in basis during business hours. Connect with this awesome crew by email at firstname.lastname@example.org, or live chat with them on the Career Center website.
Plain and simple: interviews aren’t easy. They are undoubtedly high-stake interactions that can make or break an opportunity for you. You obviously want to make a positive impression with the potential employer, but, more than likely, you’re also battling nervousness. The fact is that interviewing is a skill, and like other skills, you can build your competency through preparation and practice.
Last month, I offered advice for tackling the “What’s your greatest weakness?” question that inevitably finds its way into most interviews. That post took a deep dive into proven strategies for addressing that specific question. This month, I’m excited to share an article I recently wrote for Eye on Psi Chi, a publication for members of the international honor society for psychology students. The piece takes a broader look at interviews in hopes of giving you a more comprehensive guide to preparing for success.