Engaging with students, especially directly, is paramount for any college or university, which is why you need effective ways to get more college students to visit career services. This goes beyond , which will keep your students at your institution. It goes even farther than as that’s just how to get them in the door. Career services, by contrast, consider students’ lives holistically, over time, even beyond your school.
With that in mind, this article seeks to address your goals, student life and needs, and how to increase student engagement with career services.
Setting Good Goals: Putting Students First
You need a “true north.” Without a destination, you can never arrive. Remember: your students are not just customers or people at your educational institution or career center, but your raison d’être. Therefore, your goals must be student-focused.
Want to learn some helpful tips to guide you in figuring out what you want to do with your career?
What Do Students Value?
Okay, so students are your priority, but where does that lead you? You can’t simply make an empty statement that students are invaluable and leave it at that because that statement doesn’t set your course. You might have a goal but no pathway to get there or achieve the goal.
The next step is to consider what students value. Some people in education give too little thought to what students value, but you can’t afford to ignore this. If you don’t know whether someone is hungry, thirsty, or tired, how can you offer them what they need? Do you give them the bread, the water, or rest?
This speaks to what students are after with higher education – a thorough survey that reveals students’ goals and expectations. The main takeaway that is pertinent to you is that 58% of students gave career opportunities as their main reason for higher education – more than double the next highest answer provided. This main reason is given again and again, by in 2013 and as reported by the in 2015. Those dates are important because you can see that this is consistent over time.
They Want a Future
Above all else, students at an institution of higher learning want a future they can hope for and count on. There are many reasons to attend post-secondary educational institutions, and we will get into some others, but this is the biggest one. What does “a future” mean? It means they are hoping their education will put them in the optimal position to access a great, satisfying, and fulfilling career, which will form one of the cornerstones of their life.
We spend about 90,000 hours working. Shouldn’t that be meaningful? Students want to have a job they can look forward to, which is a main reason they will come to career services. This extends throughout higher education; whether setting immediate career aspirations or , students really value the prospect of a more secure, more fulfilling future.
They Want the Experience
Students don’t just focus on the future exclusively, of course; they also want the college experience. Many might be thinking of parties, but this also includes friendships and long-term relationships that will inform the development of each student and provide them with networking opportunities – another aspect of career building.
Attending college and university is a unique experience students are hoping to have at your institution, and in a post-lockdown world, this is harder than ever to deliver with much of the interaction and event-based experiences available on campuses being replaced by distance learning and virtual encounters.
They Want to Think Better
Education itself is a strong motivator for students as well. Education here means knowing how to think critically, to engage and grapple with different worldviews, and to learn how to both defend their ideas and accept the ideas of others. It also means absorbing material in the coursework and lectures of whichever programs students are enrolled in. How does this connect to career services? First, because critical thinking and being able to quickly appreciate and respond to information will always serve a person well. If a student can grasp the mission statement of a company and research that company’s position in the business world, they will come to their interview with a more thorough and impressive knowledge basis. Education makes students competent, confident, and able to engage with the world in more knowing ways, which will assist their future career prospects. Without being able to demonstrate their skills and abilities, employers will pass them by.
Student Life on Campus
Students exist on your campus in a kind of limbo between home and school. Many actually live on campus, but regardless, the educational institution becomes their entire world for several years. This may be the only time in their lives when they live, learn, and work in the same place.
The unique experience of student life on campus leads to particular needs in students. Campus life is composed of so many competing life factors that it can be overwhelming for them. To assess their needs and serve them properly, you will need highly effective ways to engage with students.
Furthermore, students are all transitioning from one phase of their life to the next, and you need to understand that. Frankly, it’s almost impossible to understand so much: students, education, employment, career trajectories… Not only this, but you must have the staffing to speak to all of this for your entire student body. This is more than most career services offices can handle.
All this adds up to accountability. You want to make sure that you are accountable to your students and their goals.
The university is focused on giving students the best education that they can, but accountability for career services means something slightly different. We cannot think just in terms of lectures and letter grades. Student needs include education, but more than that, experience and a future, which is why career services are important, why BeMo can help, and how we can focus on accountability.
Students' expectations rest in that future. Specifically, what are they looking for?
Accountability Through a Good Career
Students don’t want rudimentary employment – they could get that without assistance – they want meaningful employment and a direction in life. Consider this from several levels of success:
- Are your students employed? This is just surface-level, and will not satisfy students. It isn’t enough to say that they are employed, but it is a start.
- Is your student employed in their field? Jobs are associated with most majors and programs in universities and colleges. Does your student work in their sector? Is your English major editing, writing, or reviewing? Is your Psychology major a therapist or counsellor? Do you produce engineers from your Engineering program? This is extremely important and far more valuable to students.
- Do your students find fulfillment in these careers? The third tier is about making sure that the student looks forward to their job. Not every day, necessarily – there will always be drudgery – but overall. They might start slow, but look forward to their career trajectory.
Students come to you for the gateway to fulfilling careers. This is the main goal of career services, of course, to provide students with the opportunities to acquire the positions they want to develop their careers.
This is all-important, because this will make your student love their work life. That’s 90,000 hours you know will not be thrown away because of your services. Doesn’t that sound better than mere accountability?
What Can You Do? Partnership with BeMo - Expand and Augment
The task of holding yourself accountable to students’ futures is not an easy one. You have a large student body, each of whom will need attention and assistance. There are internships to apply for, job interviews to set up, and preparation to be made. Frankly, expert help to navigate these waters is needed.
Expansion and augmentation of your programs and offerings is necessary to push your career services into the best possible territory they can occupy.
How can BeMo help you? Our services individually coach, tutor, and assist students to seek out, and achieve, their goals and dreams.
Normally we contract with individual clients, but if you partner with us, you can offer our services to your student body, providing them with affordable access to the best ways to fulfill their objectives.
We do this by presenting students with our expertise. This is not to undercut career services but rather to recognize that expansion and augmentation of the existing services will best equip your students for their future lives. We give more than advice; we work directly with clients to coach them through their applications, interviews, and other processes that directly affect the outcomes of their career applications.
Expansion: we have a large staff of professionals and experts. Contracting with BeMo allows your students to avail themselves of a much larger organization connected to your career services. Essentially, you’re getting a lot of labor for your students and your students don’t need to be out of pocket for any of it.
Augmentation: we have different skill sets than your career services have. We specialize in exactly what your students need in terms of coaching, advice, expertise, and opportunities. We know you do a great job guiding your students, and we want to pick up from where you leave off. Again: we have the expert guides and mentors who can cater to students, taking them step-by-step along the process.
How exactly can we help? Here are some important examples:
Winning an internship means the world to a student. This is the first opportunity most of them get to work in their field, gaining invaluable experience, facilitating networking opportunities, and even earning a little money. “Experience” here also means skill building – learning the fundamentals for their future jobs. Multiple internships could make meaningful, permanent relationships in their field – in the industries and areas in which they want to work.
BeMo helps students get into their top-choice internships all the time. Our experts understand how to set up a CV, how to approach internships, and how to find the best internships available for students.
Internships also provide quick results since students don’t need to be fully graduated to embark on these important first steps. We believe in quick results and effective results – again, this is about accountability to student needs and interests.
Life After College - Help Students Find What to Do
We go beyond internships, however. We understand that careers are the ultimate goal, and our coaching services will provide your students with the best transitional knowledge and help to put them on the first steps of a lifelong career.
Why do you need us? Because we have experts in this very area. Our professional expertise will be entirely devoted to helping individual students achieve their best possible results. Career services doesn’t have the same skillset that our experts do, and this is why you need to partner with us. We can pass along our practical knowledge, personal coaching, and connectivity to your student body. Any one of those services would be invaluable, but we can offer you all of it.
Advice and Expertise on All of the Little Things
BeMo works with students in all manner of ways. How do you set up a CV? We do that. How do you act in an interview? BeMo does that, too. Some things – like internships and career paths – are huge and require a lot of thought and commitment – and we help greatly with those. However, there are innumerable small things as well – like CVs, cover letters, and even how to approach a job prospect or conduct yourself on the phone – that we also help students with. Students need to understand so much in so short a time frame – just a few years – and they need all the help they can get. We are that help.
Of course, we have a lot of ways we can help you, and we are happy to expand and augment your career services in whatever ways they need. This is about finding the needs of your students and fulfilling them. We will cater and tailor our services to what your student body needs.
Supply students with opportunity, clear trajectories, and great career opportunities and they will love their education and feel fulfilled. Furthermore, they will feel the informal contract with your institution has been realized. We know you don’t want to let your students down. Hold their needs up as your primary goal.
As we have established, the best way to do this is with careful partnerships that yield fruitful relationships and better accountability to students. The promise of success is a tough promise to offer because it really holds your feet to the fire. But, with the right team of professionals, through invaluable partnerships, and through the kinds of programs and expertise offered by BeMo, you can make that promise with confidence.
1. Does BeMo guarantee results?
We are a results-oriented organization that understands its own accountability. We typically offer services with a satisfaction guarantee, and we always stand by our products and services.
2. Could I partner with another company?
Of course you can, and we would never stop you from doing what is right for your organization. We know we can do a great job for you and only put ourselves forward because of our confidence in BeMo’s ability to deliver.
3. What about students who just want higher education?
Most students want a blend of results from their university or college. Education might be paramount for some of them; for most it is a future and a career. For those who put education at the top of their priorities, you can help them just by having the best educators and mentors.
4. Do you charge students for your services?
We charge clients for services, using competitive rates that are commensurate with the value received. In this particular case, the institution would be the client, so students would receive the service for free.
5. Do you offer trial periods?
We don’t want you to work with us any longer than is valuable for your institution, so of course you don’t have to stay with us longer than that. With that said, keep in mind that it might take a year to see results, since only after graduation will our efficacy be fully appreciable.
6. Do you offer different packages?
We do have different gradations of services, and we can find the best package for your institution.
7. My students don’t complain about career services. Do I still need BeMo?
Your students aren’t complaining because it doesn’t occur to them and because they aren’t engaging, not because your service is perfect. You are the one who decides if you need BeMo or not; we don’t want you to feel forced or coerced.
8. Can’t I just rely on my own career services?
It’s possible, but we firmly believe our experts have exactly the skills and experiences necessary to best coach students. We can expand your facilities and offerings to your students.