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Issue No. 5—Fall 2012
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Tips on Building a Successful Career


Dear Parents and Families,

Welcome back to Rice and congratulations to our first-year parents on “getting into Rice!” The academic year has kicked off in high gear, and as your students dig into the rigors of course work and the hustle of campus life, I wanted to offer some tips on another important component of their future success — planning their careers. It’s never too early for students to develop and strengthen their career skills.

Our mission at the Center for Career Development (CCD) is to help your student identify his or her career interests and to give him or her the tools and resources to get there, whether it’s going to graduate school, getting summer internships or securing full-time employment after graduation.

 What does the Career Center do? 

  • We provide one-on-one guidance in all steps of the career-search process, starting with creating a strong resume and cover letter, researching jobs and companies, and developing strong networking and interviewing skills.
  • Through job and skills assessments, individual counselor appointments and group workshops, we help students identify their academic and career interests in order to formulate a career plan and find the right opportunities.
  • Throughout the year, we offer many career and professional development workshops with bountiful opportunities to meet directly with employers to explore the many career options.
  • Every fall and spring we host a Career Fair for students of all graduation levels. On Sept. 11, we will have 100 companies on campus who are here to hire our great Rice talent.

What is your role as a parent? 

  • Encourage your child to engage with CCD early on (ideally during the spring of freshman year). Studies show that students who engage with their career center are more likely to secure a higher paying job than those who do not.  
  • Be supportive of their academic and career interests. There is a company or a graduate school that needs and wants your Rice graduate — someone who can communicate, think analytically, problem solve and be a team player. 
  • Be open to introspection and dialogue with your child. You have your own career experiences that you can share, and it’s possible that you didn’t always have a clear picture of what you wanted to do in life. In fact, more than 50 percent of students will change their major at least twice in four years.
  • Teach your child the value of using resources and having and developing relationships. Last year, 64 percent of seniors sought direct employment, and 36 percent went on to graduate school.Fifty-five percent of Rice graduates found their employment through CCD/Rice resources (job postings, career fairs, campus interviews, rice alumni, conferences, faculty, etc.).

Trust that Rice will provide theopportunities, resources, advising and support necessary for your child’s success at the highest level in both curricular and co-curricular education.

If you want to know more about what we do in CCD, visit www.hire.rice.edu or join our Facebook page. We look forward to working with your child and helping him or her develop career skills to use now and going forward.

Nicole Van Den Heuvel ’81Nicole Van Den Heuvel ’81
Director, Center for Career Development