Career Services preparing students for changing job market

an employer and student speak at a career fair booth

University of the Pacific’s Career Services is preparing students to navigate a changing job market through extensive skill development, advising and planning that starts as early as a student’s first year.

“The robust services offered by our Career Services team can be life changing,” said Vice President for Student Life Maria Blandizzi. “Some of our students need professional attire, coaching on how to present themselves on social media and LinkedIn and help understanding what their skills are and how that gets translated in an interview.

“You invest in four years at Pacific, and it can boil down to one or two conversations with an employer. We want to make sure Pacific students are putting their best foot forward.” 

A comprehensive series of events this semester will give students the opportunity to sharpen their interview skills, network with some of the region’s top employers and get valuable guidance and advice. 

More than 80 companies will conduct practice interviews with students (in-person and virtually) at the “Meet your future” event Feb. 7-10 from 9 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. on the second floor of the McCaffrey Center. Students will get feedback on their interview skills from employers.

Students interested in pursuing a career in education can attend “District Spotlight” via Zoom Feb. 15 from 5:30 to 7:30 p.m. Representatives from area school districts, private and charter schools and county offices of education will walk students through the application and hiring process.

The School of Engineering and Computer Science holds its annual career fair in the DeRosa University Center ballroom Feb. 23 and virtually Feb. 24. Nearly 40 employers will participate, including Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory, Aruba Networks and Applied Aerospace Structures Corporation, among others. 

Students in all majors can meet with employers at the “Spring Internship and Job Fair.” The event will be held in the DeRosa University Center ballroom March 28 from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. with a virtual option on March 30.

“This is a tremendous opportunity for Pacific students to meet with employers and network for future opportunities, including internships,” said Deb Crane, director of Career Services. “Gaining real-world experience while in school can make all the difference when applying for a job.”

A career fair “prep event” will be held March 22 for students to learn what to expect and get feedback on their resumes. Professional clothing is available to borrow at no cost from the center’s “career closet,” including suits, shirts, blouses, ties and accessories. The clothing is dry cleaned after each use.

Students can register for events through Handshake.

The spring events are in addition to support provided year-round by Career Services, including advisors who work with students individually.  

Pre-health advisor Teresa Martinez recently joined the team to help students interested in the rapidly expanding health care field. 

Martinez works with students from any major, whether they are laser-focused on a specific career or exploring their options. 

She provides customized guidance, such as the types of careers available, best practices for applying to graduate school and where to find internships. She advises students meet with her early and often to stay on track.

“Students at Pacific are very focused on their academics—which is great—but sometimes they need someone to remind them, ‘There's more to your application,” Martinez said. “There are letters of recommendation. There is experience. What does that look like and how do you diversify it?” 

Students can make an appointment for advising by calling (209) 946-2361 or going through Handshake.

Professional headshots, assistance with LinkedIn profiles and private rooms for virtual job interviews are among the many resources offered by Career Services. Take a virtual tour or visit the center on the second floor of the McCaffrey Center