Like many other college students throughout the country, I don’t know exactly what I want to do with my life. During my freshman year I was filled with anxiety all the time because I was under the impression that we had to have our whole life figured out by the time freshman year was over. I was in my spring semester and I did not know what to do. Thankfully, UMD has so many great resources and opportunities. I was introduced to the class Career Exploration (CNED 2535), and I knew it could be a great help to me and anyone who is struggling to find a major or decide on a field of study.
My advisor had recommended the class for me and said that the class has helped many people. After doing a little research I saw that this class was perfect for me. This one credit class can be taken in person one time a week, or can be done online. The main focus of the class is to highlight your specific skills and interests, and relate them to careers that would fit you well. Throughout the half semester long course we took every assessment or strengths test imaginable, including Myers-Briggs Type Indicator, Strong Interest Inventory, StrengthsQuest, and many more. By taking all these assessments you learn what your true strengths and weaknesses are, and you learn what personality traits work the best with which career field. In CNED 2535, you have a small amount of homework assignments every week, and they usually involve either displaying your skills and strengths, or researching a field of study you’re interested in. So this class not only tells you what you are good at, but it makes you take those first steps in research to see if you would really be interested in a particular field or not. Another thing that was strongly stressed in this course was all of the resources available on our campus. It talks a lot about how Career & Internship Services and other offices can answer any question you have and can steer you in the right direction. During one class, recent UMD graduates were invited to tell us their stories of choosing their majors, their overall college experience, and what they are doing now. We then got to ask them questions about what they liked or didn’t like about their jobs, and they told us what potential employers are looking for. I learned a lot every single week.
Overall I thought the class was a very good experience and I benefited from it tremendously. After this class I felt confident in my major selection and in my own personal strengths. This class exposes you to so many great resources that any student on campus would benefit from taking it. If you are second guessing your major decision, or you want to learn your own strengths and weaknesses, this class would help you a lot and I highly recommend it.