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A career paper will account for 15% of your final grade. Below are details for this assignment. Use your textbook to your advantage…chapter 10 (over Information Literacy and Communication) and chapter 15 (Major and Career) will be particularly useful.


  • Early in the semester, each student will conduct at least one career inventory.
  • Based on the results of this inventory, along with student interests and discussion, the student will have a career to research.


  • The student must research the career on their own time.
  • Each source must be from within the past 5 years.
  • Each student must utilize 2 sources that help you identify the questions in the box below. Be careful with some internet sources (are they valid?). Use Chapter 10 of your textbook to help you figure out what a credible/valid source is.
  • Students have picked a career to research.
  • The student must turn in a 3-5 page research paper over the career topic. The paper should address the following…
    • What professional skills are required? What experience is required?
    • Who are the top organizations that offer the job?
    • What chances of advancement/promotion are there in this career? What is the typical career path of the job?
    • Do you know anyone who currently has that job? If so, what advise can/will they share?
  • The paper must be typed (black ink, white paper), 12 pt font, 1 inch margins, and double spaced. It should be left justified with new paragraphs/sections tabbed/indented. The title of the paper should be the career you are researching.
  • The research paper must have a cover page and reference page.
  • The entire paper (cover page, text of paper, and reference page) must be in APA format! Citations MUST be included in APA format (if there are no citations, you have plagiarized)!
  • The paper will be submitted electronically through TurnItIn via Blackboard (“Career Paper” in the Blackboard course menu area).

oExamples of possible sources could be…

§Career Transitions


§The Career Project

§Careers Internet Database

§US Military Careers Research

§SJC’s Career & Employment Center


1stsection – WHAT IS IT?

oWhat is the career? What does this career look like (i.e. what are the job’s duties; what does a typical day entail)?

oHow much is the average income?

oHow prevalent (common) is this career today? What is the present demand for this career? Will there be a strong demand (job growth) for that career in the future? What are the trends that could influence the demand in the future?

oIs this career regional (specific to certain parts of the country/world)? Will there be local jobs in that field, or will you have to relocate?

2ndsection – HOW WILL YOU GET THERE?

oWhat amount of college/university work (degree type) is required? What type of educational degree is most useful?

§How long will this education take? (i.e. will you have to work fulltime/PT/not at all and how many courses can you take in 1 semester)

§How much money $ will this education require? Where will you get the money? (i.e. grants, loans, scholarships, parents, work)

oAre there internships available that will expose you to the job so you can try it out?


oBased on your inventory results and knowledge of yourself, do you have what it takes to be successful in that field? Who will this career serve?

oWhat is the personal value of this career? Will you find satisfaction in that career and will it be fulfilling?

oWill the job pay enough to maintain the kind of lifestyle you want? (marriage, children, house, cars, vacations, retirement, savings)


  • The grading rubric that will be used is provided on Blackboard.


  • For optional bonus points (maximum of 10 points), a student can “shadow” a professional in that career for 1 work day.
  • The student will be required to turn in (via email attachment) documentation of the “shadowing” (documentation can be found on Blackboard).
  • The student will be responsible for finding the professional and gaining permission from the agency/organization/business. The student will have to follow the businesses protocol and rules.
  • The student will have to add a paragraph to their paper describing the career “shadowing” experience.

oSee the following description from about.com…

“What is job shadowing?

Job shadowing is a career exploration activity that offers an opportunity to spend time with a professional currently working in a person’s career field of interest. Job shadowing offers a chance to see what it’s actually like working in a specific job. Not only do job shadowers get to observe the day-to-day activities of someone in the current workforce, they also get a chance to have their questions answered.”


***No late papers are accepted***

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