A Campus Wide Approach to Developing a Career Mindset: Dean Career Advantage

  • Career Level: Basic-, intermediate-, and advanced-level career services professionals
  • Competency: Consulting - faculty/campus community
  • Fee: $49 (member); $69 (nonmember);

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  • Summary

    Beginning with the end in mind, learn how a small liberal arts college is transforming students’ career preparation through its Dean Career Advantage (DCA) approach. Panelists representing academic affairs, student affairs, and career services will focus on the why, the what, and the how of this campus-wide holistic approach to preparing students for their careers. Supported by a three-year grant from the Davis Educational Foundation, Dean College designed and implemented a holistic approach to improving students’ career preparation, known as the Dean Career Advantage (DCA). Dean used a full-campus model to design the DCA approach. An advising team was redesigned from a more traditional academic adviser model to a success and career adviser model, incorporating career coaching, mentorship, and career mindset development within the advising relationship with students. Individualized career guides were developed for students to suggest activities as well as clubs and organizations to participate in that would work toward future career goals and leadership development.

    A revised series of career-focused courses beginning in the first year continuing through to graduation was developed and implemented. The career mindset learning goal was also incorporated in designated general education and major-specific courses. In addition, co-curricular programs were redesigned to emphasize the relationship between involvement and career preparation. Through this curricular and co-curricular strategy, students will be better able to connect their skills, what they need to know/do in their desired careers, and how to gain any needed knowledge and skills to be prepared for their "what’s next."

    Following this program, you will be able to:

    • Learn tips on how to gain the knowledge and skills needed to improve students’ career preparation;
    • Prepare helpful strategies to prepare students for their post-graduation life; and
    • Provide effective ways to assess student competencies in the career mindset learning goal at the foundational, mid-, and capstone levels.


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