Professional Career Development

(Class Schedule)



What is A Professional Career Development Course?


Professional Career Development (PCD) is a two-credit hour course designed to give you a very early start on the process of career planning and development. The process involves thoughtful self-assessment, career exploration, planning and follow-through with preliminary employment strategies.  The philosophy of the course is that this process is ongoing, systematic, and aimed toward a fulfilling work life, which is part of your overall plan for personal development.  Engaging in this ongoing process should be challenging, interesting, and enjoyable. Taking advantage of the options in this PCD course will aid you in your transition from college student to professional employee and give you a more direct route to your long-term career goals by anticipating and acquiring the requisite skill sets, courses, and experiences for an entry-level job that will be the best starting point on your chosen career path.

Career planning and development in PCD will:

  1. Provide you with many opportunities to explore your own interests, values and skills and to begin developing those skills and qualities that will enable you to be highly successful in the workplace.
  2. Introduce you to a variety of career options and provide you with real-world feedback on what an actual career in a particular area is like on a day-to-day basis through numerous opportunities to listen to and talk to practicing professionals in your profession.
  3. Encourage you to engage in thoughtful academic, extracurricular, career and lifelong planning.


Course Faculty


The course is taught by faculty and staff in your academic discipline.  The instruction is supplemented by inviting guests from the professional community, usually in panels, who will give you a realistic view of the work life in your profession after you graduate.  The career center staff also participates in the instruction because they have an immediate role of assisting you in finding an internships, part-time employment, and career opportunities after graduation. This team approach to instruction, supplemented by follow-up projects and assigned readings, is designed to facilitate your achieving your short-term and long-term career goals. 




This career planning and development course was designed following a very simple model of assessment, exploration, goal setting and follow-through.


  • The first step involves personal self-assessment – an honest, self-reflective appraisal of your interests, skills, personality, and values.
  • With the second step, you begin to explore the various professional career options open to someone with your credentials.
  • The third step joins dreams and reality by setting goals and defining strategies for achieving them. You will be asked to consider basic career planning questions such as:
    • What do I want to do with my life?
    • What careers interest me?
    • What skills do I have?
    • What skills do I need?
    • What new skills would I like to acquire?
    • How do I best prepare for my career?
    • Which courses, and supplemental education, would be best for me?
    • How do I get practical experience while in school?
    • Should I take an internship? Should I study abroad? Where? When?
    • How can I develop leadership and other skills?


Each week you will have the opportunity to attend a two hour lecture class.  These class sessions are taught by those who can best serve as experts, including many faculty members, business guests, staff, and graduate students.  The first part of the class will be taught by your instructor/career Counselor and the second part will be short talks or panels from career professionals and the Career Center staff.


Relationship of Professional Development Course to the Career Center


PDC works closely with the Career Center.  In fact, staff personnel from the Career Center are instrumental in bringing professional guests to our class, as well as providing other invaluable support services. We hope to engage you in a growth process that will utilize many of their services beginning this semester. We encourage all students to familiarize themselves with the student services offered through this very professional office and to take full advantage of many career services over the next couple of years.  Those desiring to explore job opportunities and conduct of a professional career search using some of the Career Center services later will be offered an opportunity to enroll in a course titled Career Search Strategies later in their academic studies. This advanced course will assist you further in mapping long-term career strategies and in addressing the process of acquiring your internship and first full-time position.


Career Center Registration:

Because we want you to start forming a relationship with the Career Center now, and because you are required to load your resume (one of your required projects) onto their system, you must properly “register” with their service before you can upload your resume. You do this by completing an online Registration Information form and then uploading a copy of your Word Resume (submitted as a Project: Employer Resume due early in the class) through the special programs available on their website, 


You will complete and submit the Registration Information form online from many workstations on or off-campus that can be connected to the Internet.  Complete information regarding how to construct a Word Resume is available on-line as well.


Once you have completed the registration, you can use the office system to find summer jobs, part-time jobs, and internships. Full details can be found online in the Resume Writing Guide and the Career Center Manual. To avoid difficulties later in the semester, we suggest you complete the registration process the first week of class.  This must be completed before you can receive credit for the required Project: Employer Resume.


Course Materials


Materials used throughout the semester include the PCD Syllabus (which is really an advanced workbook) and the other resources located on the Career Center website. Here you will find the Resume/Cover Letter Guide, the Career Center manual, job listings various self-assessment tests, links to materials on the Internet, and many career publications links which you will find extremely valuable as you prepare materials for researching your class projects.



Your syllabus is actually an extended Workbook that covers the learning events and projects. Course details are presented as thoroughly as possible. The first several pages of the syllabus present the course introduction and overview and the grading chart. In the remaining chapters, the course content is organized week by week so that you can clearly see you're reading assignments, what project are due/available each week, and the subjects addressed in the projects. 


Many of the grading and project details will not be covered in the lectures or panels. Please carefully read the entirety of this syllabus and ask specific questions of your instructor in person or through email.  Your Career Center staff is also available to help you with your career projects although they are in no way responsible for the grading.



The suggested course textbook is Career Planning Strategies by Dr. C. Randall Powell. There are suggested reading assignments in your syllabus pertaining to every presentations and much helpful career development information.  The most current edition is the fifth edition.


Course Requirements


PCD has several course requirements. You will be expected to participate by Q&A discussion in all class sessions you attend. Attending classes, submitting all required projects and documents, and achieving point totals for the desired grade are all required. All of this information is outlined in the Grade Ranges chart and it is your responsibility to see that you complete these requirements.




We are obliged to follow up on all reported cases of academic misconduct and do so in accordance with University guidelines for due process. Students whose behaviors are determined to be unethical are assigned an academic sanction comprised of a minimum of one full letter grade reduction from the grade they would otherwise receive, and a report is filed with the University.  We expect full adherence to that code from all students in this course.


While we will follow up on all reported cases of a number of possible kinds of infractions, all students should be aware of the two common problem areas in this particular class:


  1. Submission of written work

Submitting project work that is not your own will result in initiation of the academic misconduct procedures.  No work done for another class may be submitted in whole or in part. We ask that you not repeat work in one Project that you have completed in another earlier project.

  1. Attendance Slips  

Attendance slips with an evaluation are used to confirm your class attendance. Submitting a slip for an event you did not attend, or submitting a slip for another student who did not attend or who left a session early, will result in initiation of the academic misconduct procedure. Likewise, submitting an attendance slip that represents credit toward your grade when you in fact did not attend a session will result in initiation of the academic misconduct procedures. You MUST print AND sign your name on all attendance and evaluation slips to ensure proper identification.


Understanding ethical standards now and learning how to behave in an ethically responsible way is part of your professional training.  This issue is complex, but holding yourself to a high ethical standard now is a professional behavior that will only benefit you in the long run.


Class Etiquette


Think of PCD as professional training and behave in all class sessions as though you are “on the job.” Treat the guests, each of your instructors, all course-related personnel, and your colleagues with the courtesy and respect that you expect to receive in return.


Students exhibiting any inappropriate behaviors in any sessions will not receive attendance credit and may be asked to leave the room. “Inappropriate behaviors” include talking, sleeping, doing other work in class, arriving late or leaving early, and use of electronic devices. Beyond the inherent bad taste of such behaviors, appropriate behaviors are part of the curriculum of this course. Please turn off all cell phones prior to class.


There is an additional very practical reason for insisting on adherence to proper classroom etiquette. We invite many guests to participate in this class.  We have guest speakers, faculty members, business guests and alumni (many of whom are also employers).  All guests are generously contributing their valuable time, and many of them have traveled great distances and given much personal time to share their knowledge and experiences with students. It is unthinkable for students to not treat guests with respect.



Class sessions are often comprised of panels; faculty, career professionals, career center staff, and/or alumni. Faculty will provide information to give you an opportunity to compare and contrast career opportunities in your profession. The panels discuss careers in the participants' functional fields. Some of the questions that guests will address include the following:


What are your entry-level positions like?

How many hours per week do you work?

What kinds of qualities and skills should successful graduating students have when applying for these jobs?

Do you work in teams or alone?

What University courses would help prepare me for a successful career in that area?

What is the work environment like?

What functions do you perform?

What do you like and dislike about your job?

How does involvement in outside activities factor in to the overall assessment of potential candidates?

What kinds of personality traits are assets in your type of work?

What type of background do you have?

What are you looking for in students when you recruit here?


Class Topics


  • Introduction to Professional Career Development
  • Introduction to Career Planning: Self-Assessment
  • Identifying Your Professional Talents
  • Introduction to Career Planning: Career Exploration
  • Developing Your Professional Resume
  • Enhancing Your Professional Resume
  • Preparing Your Career and Internship Cover Letters
  • Professional Communications
  • Preparing for Your Employment an Internship Interviews
  • Conducting Your Employment and Internship Interviews
  • Introduction to the Career Fair Search Process
  • Exploring Internship Options within Your Profession
  • Networking Search Strategies
  • Developing Your Professional Career Portfolio
  • Influencing Your Networking Partners


Professional Guests:

Your instructor and your career center staff will regularly invite practicing career professionals to participate in this class.  The career center staff will occasionally come to class and advise you of opportunities within your profession that is available to you.  They will discuss web site services, job listings, internship opportunities, part-time jobs, informational sessions, career fairs, resume referrals, search agents, and many other employment related services. You are expected to arrive on time and be prepared to participate in each professional panel. Time will be allocated for questions and answers.


Lectures: Select Career Opportunities Orientation Program:

(Guest Lecturers)


Each semester many guest lecturers are invited to participate in the course. Professional practitioners teach many different topics especially the portion of the class devoted to Career Exploration. These are held during regularly scheduled lecture times. This segment of the course is known as the “Select Career Opportunities Orientation Program” (SCOOP). These sessions are an extremely popular part of the course. They start immediately and continue during your regularly scheduled lecture class time.


The “Select Career Opportunities Orientation Program” is designed to provide an opportunity for you to explore a variety of possible occupations, industry groups, and training programs prior to your graduation from college. We will also discuss topics relative to your job search activities. It is realistic orientation to the world of work from the point of view of practitioners rather than just textbooks, academic empathy, and personal fantasies. We do not purport to cover all career opportunities—only select options which typically are in career fields in which large numbers of graduates are hired upon degree completion within your discipline.



The career opportunities described are designed to orient you to the initial job prospects after college that may later lead to a long-range professional career.  These initial jobs in your profession will eventually lead to opportunities with growing responsibilities.  This is a strategic career planning course, not just a “how to get a job” course.  You need to invest in long-term look at your career options and career management tools.


As a broadening experience, it is not unusual for many graduates to try more than one entry-level alternative as part of a professional career management strategy. You are likely to discover after graduation that the ideal job was not what you expected. Keep your options open. Learn as much as you can about several job possibilities. The job market can be very fluid at the post-college stage of your early career.


The SCOOP programs, and your regular preceding lectures, have a variety of purposes:


Explore Career Alternatives

·        Evaluate job functions: What is the right fit for you?

·        Consider various industry groups and employers: Stay focused.

·        Learn about typical career paths and how to get into the path you desire: Keep your options open and clear.

·        Evaluate training programs: Learn as you earn.

·        Investigate specific employers: Compare your options.

Assist in Career Decision Making

·        Establish broad career objectives: What can you do?

·        Set specific, achievable goals: What do you really want to do?

·        Focus on a specific job: Who employs graduates like me?

·        Prepare for interviews: Put your best foot forward.

·        Select employers to interview: Get a jump on your competition.

             Aid in Your internship Search Activities

·        Provide Networking Contacts

·        Share Your Resume


Your lectures and SCOOP sessions are part of the regular lecture classes during the semester. Guests are invited to make a short presentation on a specific professional career field or career topic. These guests, sometimes alumni and/or senior-level managers, often come with high-impact, hard-hitting presentations. Your Career Center staff will also participate in the SCOOP sessions occasionally.  Sales pitches for their firms are frowned upon although they are invited to use their firms as examples of job and internship, possibilities and discuss the hiring process for most firms in their industry.


These sessions are packed with career content that is very useful in your career decision-making process. Your future interview presentation will show a close match to what you learn about the employer job specifications and employment procedures in these sessions.


Student Participation

In essence, the SCOOP lectures fill the role of an internship career fair. Obviously, those who hear the presentation stand a better chance of having a good interview with the employer for an internship at a later date. You should take maximum advantage of this networking opportunity. Over time, networking, as a search strategy, is one of the most useful job search techniques.


Employer Participation

Many different employers participate in the SCOOP lectures. Most employers consider it an honor to have been chosen to make a presentation in this class. We rotate our selection each year and try to vary the size of the employers and the type of career fields and topics that they discuss.  Some are alumni. Use this component of the course wisely!


The program is designed to give you a broad, well-rounded exposure to different occupations, industry groups, career search techniques and training programs. The goal is to keep you from locking yourself into a narrow career niche at this early point in your life. You should keep an open mind until the entire exploration process is complete.


Career research suggests that an individual who assembles a broad base of career information makes the wisest career decisions later. Not having to change a career direction or job frequently allows you to enjoy a higher level of job satisfaction and higher earnings.


Educational Content

The SCOOP lecture concept is obviously important to both the employer and the University. Major advantages accrue to employers invited to participate:


  • It gives employers a better feel for the true attitude of current students in contrast to what they read in the newspaper, observe in a day of grueling interviews, and see at superficial job fairs.
  • It gives students a needed perspective on the employer and career fields. Most employers appreciate this type of exposure before their recruiting visits. It creates focus for your interview strategy.
  • This is also excellent public relations for the University. The results occasionally translate into increased corporate financial and political support for your university.
  • Employers who feel they have participated in the educational role of your University may be more inclined to hire a greater number of its graduates.


We have seen significant evidence of increased hiring as a result of employer participation. We know from hard evidence that you will perform significantly better in the interview process than comparable students at other universities. This class and the SCOOP lectures are often cited by employers as the reason.


We urge you to participate for longer-term networking purposes as well as educational purposes.


Resume Distribution

After listening to the presentation, you may wish to provide the employer with a copy of your resume. Indicate at the top of your resume the position in which you are interested or attach a cover letter.  Leaving your resume informs the firm of your interest so if they have later needs, they may contact you directly.


Many firms will email you after they receive your resume and ask that you contact them for an interview. This signals that they might have further interest in you.  In many situations, these SCOOP sessions serve as a continuous Career Fair for your university.


Network, circulate, and promote yourself!



Attendance Points

You must attend each class to receive credit for attending. Your instructor will be taking attendance which will influence your class grade.  There are no make-ups.


 Counseling Career Sessions:

You are encouraged to meet with career center staff regularly but you are not required to do so.

You will discover that the career Center offers many professional informational sessions as well as many workshops related to employment considerations.  In addition, the career center offers individual career counseling sessions.  Some of the sessions are with recent alumni, student volunteers as well as professional staff.  They can provide you valuable guidance on resume preparation, cover letter design, researching employment options on the Internet, using the career Center web site, and many other valuable services. It may be necessary to establish an appointment if you wish some specific individual services.  Please go to the career center to access these services.  More will be discussed in class about the details.


If I take my class projects to a Career Center Counselor, how will my presentation the evaluated?

Your Counselor will be looking at the form, style, and substance of the presentation that you make to them regarding what you have written for the project. Some of the more common considerations that your Counselor may address in your presentations:


Have you thoughtfully considered what was asked of you in the project and carefully selected, organized and presented key points for your presentation?

Do you have gestures or habits (tapping pencil, playing with keys or change in your pocket, tearing paper) that may prove distracting to listeners?

What about form and style? Is your presentation nicely paced, or do you speak too quickly or too slowly? 

How is your posture?

Is your pronunciation clear?

Are there other aspects of non-verbal communication you could improve?

Are there habits of speech (“you know,” “um,” “like”) that you should seek to eliminate?

Do you make appropriate eye contact?

Are your gestures appropriate for the points you are making?

Are you an enthusiastic speaker?


Once a career staff member meets with you a couple of times, he/she may make references to improvement in certain areas you had discussed or suggest areas that still need attention in both your writing and presentation skills. In all probability, your instructor in the career center staff will concur on your project content and efforts.  However, in no way will your career center take any responsibility for grading your project or suggesting that you will get a certain grade if you as we suggest.  Only the class instructor can assume responsibility for your grade.



(See “Grading Scale”)


Grading for PCD is based on achieving minimums established for each grade category and by achieving an overall point accumulation minimum established for each grade. You accumulate points in different ways: attending class sessions; attending professional panels (called SCOOPS); submitting passing projects. The following text describes the grading system in more detail.


Your grade will be based on a point accumulation scheme.  You will receive 10 points for each of the lectures that you attend.  You will also receive 10 points for each of the guest lectures that you attend.  You will receive 30 points for each of the projects that you submit that receive a passing grade.


To earn a grade of 9.0 or higher you must complete at least seven projects with a grade of passing.  You must complete at least six projects to get a grade of 8.0 or higher and have at least a 7.0, or a pass, on the project. You must complete at least five projects to get a grade of 7.0 or higher and have at least a 7.0 on the project to be counted as a passing project.


The grading scheme is structured in such a way that you cannot gain all of your points to pass this class solely by classroom participation.  You will need to do at least five projects from a list of over 10 projects.  We recommend that you submit a project every other week after the project topic is discussed in class.  A recommended set of projects that correspond with topics covered in previous weeks is given in the SCHEDULE which is printed at the end of this syllabus/workbook introduction.


Class Attendance:

As this is a highly experiential course with many guests coming into class regularly, class attendance is absolutely critical.. We encourage you to not miss any sessions. When selecting a career and researching career options, it is most desirable to explore the complete range of options available to you. 


The assumption made in all sessions you attend is that you are always fully prepared to participate. Additionally, all students are expected to behave in all course sessions in ways that reflect proper class etiquette – no talking, no sleeping, no using electronic devices, no doing other work, etc. Keep in mind that some attendance events are required.  No attendance credit will be given for any event, required or not, for those not prepared or for those displaying inappropriate class behaviors.


Class attendance is one of the ways to collect points. Each time you attend a class, you will be required to complete a short evaluation and return it as you leave.  You will receive attendance points for participating in the opening lecture as well as additional points for attending the closing panel discussion. The mechanics on doing this will be discussed in class.


Projects, Required and Optional:

Submitting passing projects is another way to accumulate points. There are several projects that all students are required to submit if we expect to earn a passing grade. The required projects are your "resume" and the final "professional career development" projects.  During certain weeks, you have many options from which to choose.  The projects are a main focus of the course:

  • Self-Assessment Projects involve completing a self-assessment instrument and responding to your results.
  • Career Exploration Projects challenge you to research a professional career that interests you in order to determine your fit with that career. Your professional career choice hopefully will be supported by your current academic area of study.
  • Career Building Projects give you the opportunity to assess your standing in relation to specific job-related skills and to develop a plan to improve your skills as you complete your education.  Although the focus of the class is on identifying and building an academic plan, some emphasis will be placed on an introduction to implementing your career plans for the development of tools such as resumes, cover letters, interviewing presentations, and other career search strategies.


The variety of projects from which you can choose allows you to personalize the PCD curriculum to suit your needs and interests. Full project descriptions can be found described later in the syllabus. 


Project Documents: A document has been designed and discussed for each project using Microsoft Word. In order to complete a project, you must follow directions given in each project description carefully and complete the written work using Microsoft Word, save the document, and then email to the instructor as well as bring a hardcopy to the appropriate class. 


Incomplete, as well as incorrect, projects will not pass.  Attention to detail is as critical in this course as it will be in any internship or full-time job you take.


Project Grading: Projects are graded PASS or FAIL. You must complete each section of a project and do quality work (judged as “A” or “B”) throughout the project in order to receive a passing grade on that project.


Common problems that prevent projects from passing include failure to submit a project on time or to verify that a project was successfully submitted, failure to follow directions and complete all parts of a project, and submitting written work that fails to meet the specifications of the project or that contains too many surface-level grammatical and other errors. Most of these problems can be avoided by taking time to proofread your work before submitting it and by asking questions of your instructor when you find that you do not understand part of the instructions for a project.


Failed and late Projects: Your instructor has complete control over deciding whether or not to accept late projects or allow you to redo a failed project. 


Project Make-Ups: There are no make-up opportunities for projects aside from excused absences. Even with excused absences, other than medical, the due date for work submission will be the same.  No late projects will ever qualify for full credit without an excused absence.


 (EXCUSED ABSENCES: All religious holiday conflicts are excused absences. It is the student’s responsibility to complete the paperwork for these excused absences. 


Make-ups for Missed Requirements:

Failure to meet any of the class requirements results in failing the course. All projects must be received by your appointment time to be considered.  Late papers will not be accepted, and failure to submit the make-up paper on time, or failure to submit a satisfactory paper, will result in the final letter grade being lowered by one full letter. No projects will be accepted past the end of the semester.


Project Instructions:

All project instructions are accessed through the syllabus.  It will be asked to prepare each project using a Word document with the title of the project been listed as your main heading.


IMPORTANT:  All projects must be submitted by e-mail prior to the due date and also delivered via hardcopy in class on the due date.


Five projects MUST be completed, each with very high quality work, in order to receive credits for other requirements in the course. Each project should be emailed as an attachment to your instructor. And, you must bring a printed copy with you to any appointments.


All projects must be submitted to your instructor in order to receive credit. Your instructor will mark your printed copy with the points you earn –30 for Satisfactory, 0 for Unsatisfactory, or 40 for outstanding work – and sign and date it. KEEP these copies in a file since they will be your proof of grade in the event of a computer crash or other problems. Only signed copies will be used in grade disputes.


Each potential project is thoroughly described in this syllabus and refers to specific assignments in the textbook.  Two projects required of everyone in order to pass the course are the EMPLOYER RESUME and the final professional development project called CAREER PORTFOLIO.  These can be combined with any two other projects to earn a passing grade of D. Here is the total breakout of project requirements by grade:




8 passing projects + attendance points or more



7 passing projects + attendance points



6 passing projects + attendance points



5 passing projects + attendance points


Required Projects


The Employer Resume project, involves preparing a resume and submitting it to the Career Center via the Career Center website. A Resume/Cover Letter Guide is provided on the Career Center website to help you through this process. A Networking Resume Guide is also included in the web site. These resumes differ in purpose and length. You are likely to need two different types of resumes, depending on the planned use: job interviewing resume (Employer Resume) or networking resume (Recommender Resume).


Your networking resume is used when you feel the reviewer will take the time to read it thoroughly versus a recruiter who just wants to quickly scan and screen your background.  Your recommender resume provides more information to a potential employer.  The more information that you provide can assist an employer in seeing how your talents match their job descriptions. 


You must also submit a printed copy of the Employer Resume to your instructor.


The purpose of the Employer Resume is to urge you to pull together information from a variety of sources into a single document. Nearly every professional, whether seeking employment or not, maintains some type of personal resume. The resume is fundamental as a starting point in career planning that it is absolutely required of all class participants. Every time you change jobs or get a promotion, an updated resume is in order.


Most hiring managers want a one-page-only resume. You must try to meet this requirement. Hit the high points that detail your most relevant competencies. Your networking resume (recommender resume) can be longer because you are fairly sure that your networking partner will take the time to read it.


Career Portfolio, the final career development project, must be turned in to your instructor after all other desired projects have been presented.  Your Career Portfolio, which is due in your last week, will serve as your final exam.


The selection of the remaining projects is entirely optional, but you must submit at least five written projects or you will fail the course. Each has a deadline by which it must be completed; special instructions for projects are given in the syllabus. Most students pick and choose from these, depending upon the course grade desired, time pressures, and personal needs. Some students prefer to focus on career exploration, some on search tool development, and others on interviewing-related topics.  Which projects you elect to submit depends upon your opinion of which projects from the suggested list best meets your personal and professional needs.  Most students in this course focus on an evaluation of their current and potential credentials and work on identifying specific career options that are available within their chosen academic profession.  The goal is to investigate the types of career opportunities that are available to you after graduation, given the talents that you develop while in your academic program.


Many use the course to enhance their written communication and leadership abilities by completing projects that demand more attention to these skills.


Project Instructions


There are some rules for preparing and submitting projects of which you should be aware. All projects must be emailed as an attachment to your instructor. And you must bring a copy to your class. Your instructor will grade all written projects. Minimum page length refers to substantive text.  You may elect to upload many of these projects on to the career center web site.


Most projects indicate page length, but not all do. When you write reports in the professional work world, you will not usually be told how many pages to produce. You will write however much is necessary to convey your point. When page length is not indicated in these projects, aim for a total of 3-5 pages of substantive text, being sure to thoroughly cover all necessary points.


You are encouraged to discuss your project outline in advance with your Career Center Counselor. Your career needs are unique. If you want to tweak your work to fit your special needs, your instructor will almost always allow some adjustment to the project. But any modifications must be agreed upon IN ADVANCE.


Your advance outline, if modified from the original assignment, should be submitted and discussed the week before it is due. Your instructor will allow you some flexibility provided that it is consistent with the goals of the project and approved prior to being submitted.


You will see the projects listed in the grading section of the syllabus.  You can click on the grade title which will link you to a more complete description of the project.


Project Grading


Each project is worth 30 points. You have a choice of options.  There are 10 or more projects from which you can choose.  You want to make your choice wisely.  It is your option as to which projects to complete but we recommend that you select projects that will tend to be most beneficial to you at this point in your career.  Your Resume Project and your final Career Portfolio, your final professional development project, are the two projects that are absolutely required for you to receive a passing grade in this course (along with three other projects).


Projects are graded on a Satisfactory/Unsatisfactory basis. To earn a “Satisfactory” grade, your work must be of high quality standards indicative of your past grade performance and the standards of this university.


You will have all of your individual projects graded by your designated instructor. If your submitted project is lower than his or her acceptable quality, at the sole discretion of your instructor, you may rework the project. If your project is of outstanding quality (compared to 90% of the others) the first time it is presented, your instructor may choose to award you additional points. It is rare for additional points to be awarded. See the chart for the point system. Only 10% of all projects are graded as “Outstanding” by your instructor.


Written projects will be graded every week. You will probably know your grade as soon as possible, usually via e-mail notification.  In order to receive full credit for a written project, it must be submitted prior to your assigned class.


If you receive a failing grade for a project, consult with your instructor so that you understand why the project failed. When writing your projects, please be aware of all the stated requirements listed. Failure to include a key part of the assignment could result in a failing grade for the project, even if the rest of the work was excellent.




You will notice that there are many references to the textbook, Career Planning Strategies: Hire Me! (5th Edition), in the syllabus. Do not attempt to do any project without first reading the assigned chapters. The entire textbook is located on the Career Center web site as well as selected excerpts located within the syllabus or available by a web site link. Reading the assignments thoroughly will give you the necessary depth and background to complete the project in a satisfactory manner. Sometimes the instructions refer you to a specific chart or exhibit in the textbook.


The syllabus will spell out minimum page requirements as well as format and layout requirements. Sometimes you will be directed to cut and paste a form into your project. Follow the syllabus directions EXACTLY when submitting each project.


Within each project, there may be additional suggested readings recommended before you complete the project.


Project Delivery Instructions


IMPORTANT: All projects submitted MUST be received by your instructor at the time of your class. Students who wait until the last minute to turn in their work run the risk that technological difficulty will prevent a successful e-mail delivery. We strongly encourage all students to write and send in their in advance of the within the specific time. 


You are asked to e-mail your projects to your instructor and upload several of the projects into your career center web site under “other documents” if relevant.  This section of the Career Center web site is an excellent storage facility for your MS Word projects, especially considering that several of them will potentially be used by you for employment purposes at a later date.


All projects must be submitted in Microsoft Word document format (the Employer Resume must also be submitted into the Career Center website).


To turn in a project, email it as an attachment to your instructor so that it can be saved by you, your instructor, and your career center staff.


You must also always bring a copy of your project with you to class.


If time permits, your instructor prefers to read your project immediately after your scheduled class so feedback, if any, can be shared with you before you proceed to complete another subsequent project.


Grade Notification:

You are responsible for reviewing your grades on a regular basis.  Contact your instructor in person or by e-mail concerning any discrepancies between your expectations and what the instructor has recorded for you.


If your grade points fail to appear in your instructor’s grade book as you expected, you should appeal immediately through your instructor. The instructor will research the problem and respond quickly.


Ultimately, it is your responsibility to see that your grade is properly maintained.



No quizzes or exams are administered in this class.


 Grade Reporting

All grade reporting is returned in a timely way. It is very important to have your name (last name first) and your instructor’s name clearly and legibly marked on all your forms and projects.


Grade Ranges


This syllabus lists all the requirements needed to achieve each of the letter grades for this course. You are in control of the grade you receive. These minimums must be met:


Ø      You must achieve a certain number of total course points for a specific grade.

Ø      You must complete a minimum number of passing projects, including the required Employer Resume and Career Portfolio.


For example, if you have enough points for a 9.0 but have not completed the requisite number of passing projects, your grade will be calculated based on minimum projects and minimum points. See the grading scale for exact requirements.


You must decide which events you wish to attend, be on time, meet deadlines, submit quality work, and participate actively in attendance events.


We strongly urge that you build more points than indicated in the requirements

to avoid unpleasant surprises with your grade at the end of the course.



Grade Activity-Topics

Possible Points

Points Earned


L1: Professional Career Development








L3: Career Planning: Self-Assessment








L5: Identifying Your Professional Talents








L7: Career Planning: Professional Career Exploration








L9: Developing Your Professional Resume








L11: Enhancing Your Professional Resume








L13: Preparing Your Career and Internship Cover Letters








L15: Professional Communications








L17: Preparing for Your Professional And Internship Interviews








L19: Conducting Your Professional And Internship Interviews








L21: The Career Fair Search Process




L22: L10: SCOOPS




L23: Exploring Internship Options Within Your Profession








L25: Networking Search Strategies Within Your Profession








L27: Developing Your Professional Career Portfolio








L29: Influencing Your Networking Partners








Projects as needed






APPENDIX – Quick Links


Projects – alphabetical listing

Lectures – alphabetical listing

Grading Scale